Westfield

1902 Westfield 13HP Model G Four-Seat Tonneau

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | November 3, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

Founded in Westfield, Massachusetts, in 1901 by Charles Moore, Westfield did not produce cars for very long and, in fact, never really sold any gas powered cars at all, even though this car is actually gas powered. Their first cars were steam powered but he also sold cars with a chassis and body, but no engine.

Giving owners the ability to choose their own engines for their cars would lead to some pretty outlandish automobiles today, but in 1902 pickings were slim and this car features a 2.5-liter two-cylinder engine making 13 horsepower – enough power to get this thing up to around 50 mph. It was built by a small engine building company called Remington.

Westfield folded in 1903, having lasted just three short years. Restored in the 1990s, the car spent most of its life in the U.S., with much of the late 1990s and early 2000s touring the show circuit there. It came to the U.K. in 2006 where it has continued to be shown (and toured). You’re unlikely to find another car from this marque and this one, which is quite usable, should bring between $260,000-$330,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Clement-Panhard

1900 Clement-Panhard 4½HP Type VCP Voiture Légère Vis-a-Vis

Offered by Bonhams | Los Angeles, California | November 11, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

There have been so many great pre-1905 cars for sale lately! This car is from the mini-empire of marques featuring Adolphe Clément’s name. Clement was on the board at Panhard et Levassor and when the company’s factory was found to not be adequate enough to build a run of a 4.5hp “dog carts” that were designed by Arthur Krebs, Clement set up his own concern to build them.

Clement-Panhards were available between 1898 and about 1900. They featured a rear-mounted single-cylinder engine that made 4.5 horsepower and drove the rear wheels through an exposed-gear transmission. The three headlights and center-pivot steering give it an unusual face that only its mother could love.

In the U.K., these were called Clement-Stirlings or Stirling-Panhards. Only about 500 were built and body styles differed wildly from chassis to chassis. This car has two bench seats that face each other, which was a weird fad among early cars. This one hasn’t been used in a while but it was well kept for the last many decades. It should sell for between $40,000-$50,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Abarth Monomille

1963 Fiat-Abarth Monomille GT Coupe

Offered by Bonhams | Padua, Italy | October 28, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

The Fiat-Abarth 750 was a tiny sports car manufactured by Abarth beginning in the late 1950s. The famous Zagato “Double Bubble” variant is highly sought after today. Thanks to that car’s success, in late 1960, Abarth shoved a larger engine in their Fiat 600-based car and the Monomille was born.

Early Scorpione cars carried bodies by Beccaris and this, a later GT version, sports a fastback body by Sibona & Basano. The engine is a 1.0-liter straight-four that was tuned in the 1990s to 80-ish horsepower (up from the original 60). These cars were expensive when new, costing nearly a third more than a Porsche 356.

This pricing model might explain why the Monomille is so rare today. This car, whose restoration was completed three years ago, is one of four GT models that still exist. It should bring between $110,000-$140,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

The Oldest British Car

1894 Santler 3½HP Dogcart

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | November 3, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

And now on to the most interesting sale of the year, Bonhams’ London-to-Brighton sale. It never disappoints, this year especially. What you’re looking at here is believed to be the oldest surviving car built in Britain. The Santler brothers, Charles and Walter, were building bicycles in the 1880s in Worcestershire. They completed their first vehicle, a steam car, in 1889.

Unfortunately there were some weird laws on the books in 1889 and two-seat self-propelled cars were illegal. So they parked their experimental vehicle and only came back to it a few years later when they took the chassis (this one) and installed a two-cylinder gasoline engine. It was used briefly and wasn’t rescued until the 1930s. A fan of old cars bought it in the 1950s and restored it, using a period-correct 3.5 horsepower single-cylinder Benz engine, which it still carries today.

The Santlers built a few one-off cars up through 1922 which included a brief run of cars they actually offered for sale. This may be the only surviving example from Santler and with its chassis dating to 1889, it’s one of the oldest cars in the world. It has been prepped and is ready to take part in this year’s London-to-Brighton run. As a piece of history, it should bring between $260,000-$330,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

1907 Friswell

1907 Friswell 6HP Two-Seater

Offered by Brightwells | Bicester, U.K. | October 25, 2017

Photo – Brightwells

Louis Delage was a Frenchman who ended up founding one of France’s snazziest automobile manufacturers in 1905. Around that same time, a company called Friswell popped up in London and they sold the Peugeot Bebe.

Those single-cylinder cars were replaced for 1906 with a car that they sold under the Friswell marque. The design utilized an 885ccc single-cylinder engine that makes 6.5 horsepower. It features a three-speed transmission and shaft drive. Oh, and it was likely designed (at least in part) by Louis Delage.

Friswell disappeared after 1907. This car is one of what has to be only a few survivors (if that number is greater than one) from a two-year-only marque. The pre-sale estimate is between $23,250-$28,500. Click here for more from this sale.

Evante Mk II

1999 Evante Mk II

Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | October 19, 2017

Photo – Brightwells

There was an engine tuning company in the U.K. called Vegantune and they specialized in restoring Lotus Elans. After a while, they figured out a few tweaks that could be done to improve the cars and set up a separate company – Evante Cars Ltd – to build their own car, which was heavily influenced on the Elan. Introduced in 1987, the first Evante could be had as a kit or complete car.

The first Evante only lasted through 1991, but then the company was purchased by Fleur de Lys Automobile Manufacturing and they introduced this, the Mk II. Based around a 1.8-liter Ford Zetec straight-four, the Mk II made 130 horsepower. The body is fiberglass.

Only nine Mk IIs were built, with this probably among the last. Having covered only 11,000 miles since new, it looks like an attractive modern take on the classic Lotus Elan. Consider it a quirky Miata alternative if you will. It should bring between $14,750-$17,500. Click here for more from this sale.

Zimmer Quicksilver

1987 Zimmer Quicksilver

Offered by Motostalgia | Waxahachie, Texas | October 14, 2017

Photo – Motostalgia

Looking at this car from a distance (or in pictures), you’d think it’s some kind of customized Cadillac Eldorado. Wrong! It’s actually mid-engined. But it is still GM-based. That base? The Pontiac Fiero.

Zimmer Motorcars Corporation was founded in 1978 by Paul Zimmer in Syracuse, New York. They’re primarily remembered for the Golden Spirit, the most neo-classic of all the neo-classics (which, I think you can still buy). The Quicksilver was a rogue moment for Zimmer when they decided to build a mid-engined luxury coupe.

It’s powered by the Fiero’s 2.8-liter V-6 making 140 horsepower. The front of the car was actually extended over a foot, which is why it looks so long. That added some luggage space – perfect for weekend getaways. This 19,000 mile example is one of only 150 built. It cost $50,000 when new but should bring between $10,000-$20,000 today. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Motostalgia’s lineup.

Peugeot L45 Grand Prix

1914 Peugeot L45 Grand Prix

Offered by Bonhams | Los Angeles, California | November 11, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

Over the past year I’ve done some (super nerdy) analytical statistician-type stuff around the Indy 500. During the course of that research, I found some interesting things and this car features prominently among them. We’ll get to that in a minute, but first let’s say that yes, this is the coolest Peugeot you’re likely to ever see up for sale.

As one of the oldest car companies in the world, Peugeot has been involved in racing longer than most companies have existed. The L45 was one in a series of purpose-built racing cars that started with the L76 shortly after 1910. It became the L56 for 1913 and those were raced around Europe. For 1914, the car was updated again, this time to the L45 specification you see here. Peugeot built four of them for the 1914 French Grand Prix (three competed and this was the spare).

It features four-wheel brakes, shaft-drive, and a 112 horsepower, 4.5-liter straight-four. While racing in Europe was big business for Peugeot, there was this little race on the other side of the Atlantic that was getting a lot of attention. They sent one of their premier drivers, Jules Goux, there in 1913 and he was the first to take the checkered flag at the third Indianapolis 500. Keeping in mind there were no Indy 500s in 1917 or 1918, the race history for the chassis you see here includes:

  • 1916 Indianapolis 500 – 3rd (with Ralph Mulford)
  • 1919 Indianapolis 500 – 19th, DNF (with Art Klein)
  • 1919 Sheepshead Bay board track race – 4th (with Klein)
  • 1919 Cincinnati board track race – 2nd (with Klein)
  • 1923 AAA dirt championship – 2nd (with Joe Boyer)
  • 1949 Indianapolis 500 – DNQ (with Lindley Bothwell)

Wait, what was that last one? This car was owned by Peugeot and passed to a few owners including Lutcher Brown, Frank Book, Ralph Mulford, Art Klein, and finally to Lindley Bothwell. Bothwell’s legendary collection of early racing cars featured this among others. Feeling sporty, he took the car to the 1949 Indy 500 and bested the qualifying speed that the Peugeots posted in 1916. Unfortunately, it was far too slow to make the race. But it makes for a pretty interesting, if not bizarre story. Imagine someone showing up at the 2019 Indy 500 trying to qualify in Bobby Rahal’s race-winning car from 1986.

Not many of these Peugeot racing cars survive and this is supposedly the only one with Grand Prix history (even if it was a spare car). It is largely original, though the engine has been rebuilt since 2000 – but it is still capable of 100 mph. It’s one of the most interesting cars to come up for sale in some time. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

MB 600 Pullman

1968 Mercedes-Benz 600 Pullman Limousine

Offered by Artcurial | Rueil-Malmaison, France | October 15, 2017

Photo – Artcurial

The 600 (which sported the internal Mercedes code name of W100) was the replacement for the Mercedes-Benz 300 Adenauer. Introduced in 1963, the 600 was offered through 1981, which is quite a long time as the cars sold in the 80s still sported late-60s Mercedes styling. Mercedes didn’t build a true replacement for this car until the 2015 Mercedes-Maybach S-Class (though I guess the Maybachs of the 2000s kind of count).

All 600s were powered by a 250 horsepower, 6.3-liter V-8. It pushed a lot of mass around – especially on this long-wheelbase version (the “short” wheelbase sedan was the standard model). The much-sought-after long-wheelbase Pullman Limousine that you see here seats eight and has six doors (three on each side). An even more extravagant Landaulet (which sported a convertible top for the rear passengers) was also available.

This particular car was one of three purchased by the government of the Congo. Two were sent to Africa while this one remained in Germany to be used by embassy staff. Many governments bought 600 Pullmans – in fact, it was the car to have if you were a dictator. These were the favored cars of such beloved dignitaries as Saddam Hussein, Robert Mugabe, Fidel Castro, Idi Amin, Pol Pot, Kim Jong-il, and even Pablo Escobar. Oh, the Pope had one too, I guess. Intensely restored, this car – one of just 428 LWB examples built – should bring between $475,000-$595,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

DB AR1

2003 Aston Martin DB AR1 Roadster by Zagato

Offered by Bonhams | Knokke-Heist, Belgium | October 6, 2017

Photo – Bonhams

The Aston Martin DB7 went on sale in 1994 with a straight-six engine. The V-12 arrived in 1999. By 2003, when the variant you see above was introduced, the DB7 was pretty long-in-the-tooth. Before this, there was a DB7 Zagato Coupe built from 2002 and 2003 that helped spice up the range. This is essentially the roadster version of that car.

And it’s a true roadster – there is no top. And I guess, technically, it’s not even a DB7 at all, since that “7” doesn’t appear in the car’s name. “AR1” stands for “American Roadster 1” and just 99 examples were produced. This is #23.

The DB AR1 is powered by a slightly tweaked version of the DB7 Vantage’s 6.0-liter V-12 that, in this car, makes 435 horsepower. All that power helped set a record of sorts – this is the world’s fastest true roadster, with a top speed of 186 mph.

The first owner of this car was American. Then it made it’s way to it’s third owner in Luxembourg by way of its second owner in Switzerland. It’s a 2,000 mile car and a gorgeous one at that. Aston and Zagato go hand in hand and this car is drivable proof. It is expected to sell for between $300,000-$420,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.