Two Buckboards

1907 Waltham Orient Buckboard Surrey

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Charles Metz’s Waltham Manufacturing Company of Waltham, Massachusetts began producing bicycles in 1893. Their first automobile was built in 1899 and it was electric. Different cars followed for 1900-1902, and their most famous product, the Buckboard, debuted in 1903. They used “Orient” as a brand name through 1905 when it shifted to Waltham-Orient or just Waltham.

This 1907 model was from the final year of Orient Buckboard production and is quite different from most of their products. Called the Surrey, it features two-rows of bench seating and a surrey top that made it look downright luxurious compared to other two-passenger buckboard cars. Power is from a four horsepower two-stroke single-cylinder engine.

Only 1,020 examples were built. This one should bring between $10,000-$15,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.


1919 Briggs & Stratton Flyer

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

When A.O. Smith stopped producing his “Smith Flyer,” he sold the rights to Briggs & Stratton, they of more recent lawn mower-engine fame. The company has been around since 1908 building small engines. When they acquired the rights to the Flyer in 1919, they improved upon it a little and continued production with their motors through 1923.

After that, the design was sold to a different company that produced it as the Red Bug. This five-wheeled car has a top speed of 25 mph and a single-cylinder engine. It should sell for between $10,000-$15,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Vignale Aurelia B52 Spider

1953 Lancia Aurelia B52 Spider by Vignale

For sale by Girardo & Co.

Photo – Girardo & Co.

The Aurelia is a very historic nameplate in Lancia’s past, yet it was produced in fairly limited numbers between 1950 and 1958. Only 18,201 were built in total across all body styles. They revised the chassis over the years during the various series of Aurelias built.

The B50 was the less-pedestrian version, and they make up a very small percentage of Aurelia production. Offered as a bare chassis to coachbuilders, B50s would turn up with some fantastic coachwork. In 1952, Lancia updated the chassis to B52 specification, and they built 98 examples through 1953.

Power is provided by a 1.8-liter V6 – the Aurelia was the first mass-produced car with a V6. This example was bodied by Vignale and debuted at the Brussels Motor Show, where it may have caught the eye of the Belgian royal family…

It remained in Belgium through 2007 and was later restored to its motor show stand-livery. It was shown at Villa d’Este in 2016 where let’s be honest, a car like this absolutely belongs. This right-hand drive example is one of 12 B52s built in 1953. You can read more about it here.

Kearns Roadster

1910 Kearns Model G Roadster

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Kearns Motor Buggy Company was founded by Maxwell Kearns in Beavertown, Pennsylvania in 1909 after he purchased the former Eureka plant. High-wheelers were still in fashion so that’s what they started building. It was also almost the same car Eureka had been building.

Kearns advertised the cars as different than your standard high-wheeler, which they were with their more conventional setup. They eventually moved into four-cylinder cars and cyclecars. Ultimately, the company stopped passenger car production in 1916 to focus on commercial vehicles, which lasted through 1928.

The Model G as one of six models offered in 1910 and one of two powered by a 20 horsepower, three-cylinder two-stroke engine. It has dual-chain drive, a right-hand steering wheel, and other features not found on many of its contemporaries. This former Henry Austin Clark Jr. car is one of about 100 examples of the Model G produced, and it should sell for between $20,000-$30,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

A.B.F. Prototype

1923 A.B.F. Boattail Prototype

Offered by Bonhams | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania | October 7, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

If you were to say “there are zero automakers that can claim a 100% survivability rate among their cars (one-offs notwithstanding),” I think it would be easy to agree. And then A.B.F. comes along. Albert Ford was born in Canada but resided in England when he tried to get a company called All-British Ford off the ground in the 1920s.

It didn’t go great, but he did manage to complete two cars. Both of which still survive. This was the first of the two examples, and it is powered by a 1.2-liter V4. The body was actually purchased by Ford from the owner of a racing Alvis who was looking for something different. A.B.F. closed down shortly after, as the owner changed course to hospital furniture manufacturing.

Both cars were rescued from Mr. Ford’s garage after WWII. This one was restored in the 1950s and again in the late 1970s. It’s a pretty cool little car with great period bodywork. It is expected to bring between $75,000-$125,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Two Cars in Hershey

1914 Jeffrey Six Model 96 Five-Passenger Touring

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Jeffrey was kind of an important marque. It was founded by Thomas B. Jeffrey and his son Charles. They started by building the Rambler, but after Thomas died, Charles changed the name to Jeffrey. In 1917, the company was sold to Charles Nash (after Charles survived the Lusitania sinking), and the name changed again. Nash eventually merged into AMC, which is now part of Chrysler… which is now part of Fiat. So this is just like an old Fiat.

Jeffrey cars were only sold between 1914 and 1917. Three models were offered in 1914 and the Six was the largest. It is powered by a 48 horsepower inline-six. Over 10,000 Jeffreys were sold in 1914, and this one should bring between $30,000-$50,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.


1909 Enger Model B High-Wheel Runabout

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Frank J. Enger set up shop in Cincinnati in 1909 to build high-wheelers. More traditional touring cars followed in 1910, but the company folded in 1917 after Frank’s suicide in his office. This high-wheeler is from the first year of production.

The Enger high-wheeler was actually a normal car but with big wheels. It’s pretty much the original donk. Three models were offered that year, and the Model B was the least expensive at $1,600. It’s powered by a 14 horsepower flat-twin. This one should bring between $15,000-$25,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale. Also, I really want this car.

Gwynne Eight

1923 Gwynne Eight

Offered by Bonhams | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania | October 7, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

October in Pennsylvania is a great place to buy an old American car. But it should take no more than a quick glance to notice that this car is from the other side of the pond. It looks like an Austin or Morris of the same period but was built by Gwynnes Limited, an engineering company that dated back to 1856. They built a few thousand cars between 1920 and 1929.

The Eight was powered by an 850cc inline-four capable of 24 horsepower. About 2,250 examples were built, and it is said that this is the only example wearing this body. It is currently not in running order but is complete.

It’s been in the U.S. since 1975 and should bring between $15,000-$25,000 in 2019. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Grout Steam Car

1902 Grout Model H Steam Runabout

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Grout was built in Orange, Massachusetts between 1899 and 1912. The company was founded by brothers C.B., Fred, and Carl Grout, along with their father William who happened to own a sewing machine business. The company history was full of family drama, and the brothers left town after trying to force their dad out (and failing).

Steam cars came first, and gasoline vehicles followed. The Model H was likely built in 1903 and was the cheapest car they offered that year at $775. This steam-powered runabout is London-to-Brighton eligible and has spent quite a few years in museums.

It should sell for between $30,000-$50,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

September 2019 Auction Highlights

We start in September with Worldwide Auctioneers’ Auburn sales results, which somehow were posted before their Pacific Grove sale. We’ll get to those later. But to start, the top seller here was a 1948 Tucker for $990,000.

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

The Epperly-Offy we featured sold for $385,000, and the Surlesmobile went for $30,800. The Gray-Dort was a steal at $6,600, and, not surprisingly, the 1904 Carter brought only $1,925. Full results can be found here.

Across town (or on the other side of the highway), was RM’s Auburn Fall sale. The top seller here was this 2005 Ford GT for $302,500.

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Duesenberg concept car failed to sell, but the Harroun brought $33,000, the Auto Union $23,650, and a previously-featured Kissel $49,500. Click here for all of the results.

Next up, Brightwells Leominster Classic & Vintage sale. The Bristol 412 we featured sold for $17,258. The top sale was $259,565 paid for this 1960 Aston Martin DB4 project. More results can be found here.

Photo – Brightwells

Following up on Worldwide’s Pacific Grove sale, the Riker electric car and the Simplex failed to sell. The Stevens-Duryea brought $115,500. The top sale was a 1958 Porsche 356 1600 Speedster for $264,000, but they’ve taken the photos off of their website. 🙁

You can still read through the results here.

Finally, Bonhams at Beaulieu, where a previously-featured Trumbull cyclecar failed to sell for a second time. The top sale was this 1929 Bugatti Type 44 Tourer by Harrington. It brought $365,225.

Photo – Bonhams

Our other two feature cars both sold. The Miniature Velox brought $64,451, and the Healey Tickford sold for $21,483. Click here for complete results.

Ruger Prototype

1970 Ruger Sports Tourer Prototype

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

This is the second of two prototypes built by William B. Ruger that bore his name. Powered by a 7.0-liter Ford V8, the cars are built in the style of old Bentleys, etc., and this one very much has some Bugatti looks to it.

According to the auction catalog, the development of the prototypes cost $800,000 in 1969. They were too expensive to ever put into production, but the Ruger family really didn’t need a car company as they were making a killing selling guns.

You’d be hard-pressed to notice that this car was built in 1970 and not 1929. The details are great, and it’s covered almost 15,000 miles since it was built. It’s like if someone tried to build the best 1970-model-year car today with all of the new engine and chassis technology available (oh wait, that’s what Dodge has been doing for the last decade #burn). This isn’t a replica or a neo-classic. It’s a brand-new 1930 Bentley-style tourer. It just happened to be built in 1970.

This car was featured in Motor Trend in 1970. It’s the first time either of the Ruger-branded cars has ever been offered for sale, as the family has retained them since new. It’s being sold without reserve. You can read more about it here and see more from this sale here.

Five Cars from Indiana

1905 De Tamble-Miller High-Wheel Runabout Prototype

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Edward De Tamble‘s earliest cars were highwheelers. Series production didn’t start until 1908 in Indianapolis (and later, Anderson, Indiana), and this car predates that time. It carries a stamp calling it a De Tamble & Miller, but not much is really known about it.

Mostly original, it is thought that this was the prototype De Tamble, and it uses parts from the era, including the gearbox from a Ford Model F. It’s a one-off piece of early automotive history, and you can read more about it here.


1907 Kiblinger Model D High-Wheel Runabout

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

If you’re noticing a trend, yes, Indiana liked their highwheelers before 1910. The Kiblinger was a product of Auburn, Indiana, where they were built between 1907 and 1909. There are a few of them on display at the Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg museum. And this car was once on display there too.

The Model D was one of six models produced by the company, and it’s powered by a 10 horsepower, two-cylinder engine that is shared with similar cars from Sears. Speaking of similar cars, company president W.H. McIntyre shut down and re-branded the company as the McIntyre after they were sued for patent infringement by Success. You can read more about this car here.


1908 Mier Model A Runabout

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The short-lived Mier was built by the Mier Carriage and Buggy Company of Ligonier, Indiana in 1908 and 1909. Solomon Mier, and his son A.B., built about 100 cars during that time before returning to the horse-drawn buggy industry, where they managed to stay in business into the 1920s.

This Model A Runabout was one of two models offered in 1908. Power is from a 10 horsepower inline-twin. Of the 100 built, only two remain, making this a great chance to get your hands on a truly rare car. Click here for more info.


1917 Elcar Model E Cloverleaf Roadster

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Elcar actually traces its roots back to Pratt-Elkhart, which was one of Indiana’s highest-quality early cars. That company later became Pratt, which was quickly reformed as the Elkhart Carriage and Motor Car Company in 1915. They built the Elcar through 1931.

This was the only model available in 1917, and it is one of four body styles offered. The Cloverleaf Roadster retailed for $845 and is powered by a 34 horsepower, Lycoming inline-four. Prediction: this car sells for what would appear to be a great deal. Click here for more info.


1931 Auburn Model 8-98A Sedan

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Somehow we’ve only featured one Auburn car prior to this. Indiana was a force in the early days of the automobile industry, and Auburn was one of its star products, which were offered between 1900 and 1937. They built some pretty fantastic cars in the mid-1930s, but everyone seems to forget that they built “normal”-looking cars like this alongside those wild boattail speedsters.

The 8-98 and the 8-98A were the only models offered in 1931. They were powered by a 98 horsepower straight-eight. Various body styles were available, and this sedan would’ve cost its new owner $1,195. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.