Divco Milk Truck

1949 Divco Model 49N

Offered by Mecum Auctions | Kansas City, Missouri | March 31, 2012

Divco, which is an acronym for Detroit Industrial Vehicles Company began producing delivery vehicles in 1926 and continued doing so under a variety of different corporate umbrellas until the brand finally wound up production in 1986. Back when milk was delivered door to door, these trucks were a common sight in cities and suburbia. They are a symbol of a different time. Can’t you just picture a milkman in a white uniform hopping out of this, all smiles, walking some glass jars of milk to your door with a friendly wave? Ah, sweet Americana.

This particular truck received a mind-blowing $100,000 restoration in 1999. If the seller gets half of that out of it he should consider it a good day. That said, there is a solid market for these trucks. They remind many collectors of their childhood, of a simpler time. In that case, perhaps the “Borden’s” script on the side of the truck should be replaced with “Rosebud.”

For the complete catalog description, click here. For more from Mecum in Kansas City, click here.

Update: Sold $52,000.

Henney Kilowatt

1960 Henney Kilowatt

Offered by Mecum Auctions, Houston, Texas, April 13-14, 2012

If you saw this and thought “that looks like a Renault,” well you’d be correct because in the mid-1950s the National Union Electric Company and the Henney Motor Company decided to retool a Renault Dauphine as an electric car for the U.S. market. Henney was primarily a coachbuilder (which makes it somewhat ironic that they outsourced the styling of this car).

According to the catalog description, this is a 1957. However, from what I know/have read elsewhere (thank you, Hemmings), the Kilowatt was produced in 1959 and 1960 only (although there may have been a few sold as 1961 models). Only 47 cars were ever sold and most of those went to electric companies. Very few made it into the hands of the general public (they cost about $3,600 at the time while the average new car price was $2,600) and only a handful are known to exist today.

The car is capable of 60 mph and could go 60 miles on a charge. If you’re an electric car enthusiast or collector, this is a must have. It is considered by some as the first “modern” electric car. Sure, there were many electric car manufacturers back in the 1910s and 1920s but they were severely limited in range and performance and livability. This kind of changed that. Yes, we’ve moved forward – but not by too terribly much, unfortunately.

No pre-sale estimate was given but I’d guesstimate it somewhere around $50,000. Click here for the catalog description and here for more from Mecum in Houston.

Update: Sold, $35,000.

Berkeley SE492

1959 Berkeley SE492 “Twosome”

Offered by Auctions America, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, March 16-18, 2012

If you’re into numerology, watch out. Berkeley produced about 666 SE492s between 1957 and 1959. Just hope that yours doesn’t have the final serial number. For the first year of production, the car was called the Sports SE492. When the Berkeley Foursome (four-seater) was introduced in 1958, the name “Sports” was replaced by “Twosome” to differentiate between the two models. This is a “Twosome.”

All Berkeleys were front-wheel drive and this one used a 30 horsepower 492cc three-cylinder two-stroke engine. Berkeley cars were small and 30 horsepower is adequate. They are referred to as “microcars” but the term “microcar” has a somewhat negative connotation in my mind – and I’m probably not alone. I think small and cramped with smart-car-esque proportions. But these open-top cars are just little British sports cars. Sure, it might be smaller than an MG (which are fairly small). How many microcars could hit 80 mph? Plus, these had competition success, with Lorenzo Bandini finishing first in class with one in the 12 Hours of Monza.

A car eerily similar to this (I think it’s the same one) was recently for sale for $15,000. And that sounds like a reasonable price for this car. To read the complete description, click here and here for more on Auctions America’s current sale.

Update: Sold $16,500.

Milhous Collection Results

RM Auctions’ “recent” sale in Boca Raton, Florida of the eccentric Milhous Collection of cars – and many other assorted expensive things – was a big success, with every lot selling. The auction brought in a total of $38.3 million. Top sale was the 1912 Oldsmobile Limited Five-Passenger Touring we featured a while back. The estimate on the car was $1.4-1.6 million but the car ended up selling for $3,300,000 including fees.

The second-highest sale at the auction was not a car. It was this 1903 Ruth Style 38-B Fair Organ:

It’s gigantic and sold for $1,265,000. Of the top ten sales, six were automobiles and four were organs or orchestrations. All four of these musical pieces sold for over $1 million.

Our other feature cars included the stunning 1913 Alco Six Model H Touring Car that sold for $506,000. The Duesenberg Model J Murphy Convertible Sedan sold for $990,000. The 1932 Marmon Sixteen brought $552,500. Our other feature car, the one-of-a-kind Rounds Rocket Indy roadster sold for $275,000.

Other highlights were this 1933 Chrysler Custom Imperial Five-Passenger Phaeton.

It’s a former Otis Chandler car with impressive styling and a 135 horsepower. It sold for $1,210,000.

In addition to the Rounds Rocket Indy roadster, there were a few other race cars that sold too. First was this 1949 Snowberger-Offy built by former driver Russ Snowberger and driven by George Lynch who failed to qualify it for both the 1950 and 1951 Indy 500.

It sold for $192,500. There was also a 1962 Lesovsky-Offy (aka the Sarkes Tarzian Special) driven by Elmer George (father of IRL founder Tony George) in the 1962 and 1963 race.

It bettered it’s estimate by about $50,000, selling for $330,000. From a slightly more recent era, this 1984 March 84C Cosworth driven by Teo Fabi – in awesome Skoal Bandit livery – sold for $110,000.

The most “affordable” car sold at this sale, that was not a motorcycle or tractor, was a 1962 Corvette Convertible that sold for $66,000 – it was the only car not to break into the six figures.

The other interesting “vehicle” sold was a 1941 Ryan PT-22 Recruit airplane. These planes were very popular in general aviation after WWII because they could be bought as surplus for a few hundred dollars. There used to be a handful of them based at a local airport back in the late 1940s and 1950s. At least one ended up in a creek (no one was hurt). This example sold for $241,500, slightly higher than what was paid for it after the war.

For complete results, click here.

Shelby Durango

1999 Dodge Durango Shelby SP360

Offered by Auctions America, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, March 16-18, 2012

I’m going to be honest: those are some ugly wheels. Everything Carroll Shelby attached his name to – and he seems willing to attach it to just about anything (there was a Shelby Omni, after all) – becomes collectible. You don’t see many of these next to the GT350s and GT500s and Cobras at auctions. Maybe because it’s a late model SUV with a big engine and some giveaway Viper paint.

Only 300 Shelby SP360s were built between 1999 and 2000.  The 360 stands for the number of ponies under the hood, coming from the supercharged 5.9 liter Magnum V8. It could hit 60 mph in 7.1 seconds on its way to 142 mph (which was seriously fast for a 2+ ton SUV). I’ve heard a standard Durango from this era and it sounded great. I bet this sounds awesome.

These will never reach a level anywhere close to the Shelbys of yore. This is a well-equiped 4WD model and I’m unaware of the mileage (it could have been a daily driver, although this does not appear to be the case as it looks fairly clean). I think a $20,000 hammer price should elate the seller. I wouldn’t pay that much. For more info click here and more from AA in Ft. Lauderdale, click here.

Update: Sold $13,750.

Clément-Bayard Torpedo

1912 Clément-Bayard 4M2 Torpedo

Offered by Auctions America, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, March 16-18, 2012

Adolphe Clément-Bayard was a big name in the early days of the automotive industry – especially in France. There were no less than seven different marques that bore his name and the model seen here was built by SA des Ets Clément-Bayard, a company that built automobiles from 1903 until 1922.

This car has a four-cylinder engine making eight horsepower and a body that we’ll call “petite.” It looks to be in fantastic condition and one thing that struck me while viewing the photos of this car is the fact that early cars were so well badged. The badging on cars from this era all feature intricate brass plating stamped with production dates and company names and locations. Some of them border on art. Here’s some examples from this car:

No lame, mass-produced VIN plates on this car. These things are solid metal that were stamped. It comes from a time when things were built with an eye for how they looked. No detail overlooked. It’s an age we are not likely to ever see again: the end of the industrial era before things were mass-produced.

The middle photo comes from one of the many light fixtures that adorn this car. If you plan to drive it at night, no need to worry. You’ll look like a Christmas tree driving down the road. For the complete catalog description, click here and to see the rest of what Auctions America has to offer in Ft. Lauderdale, click here.

Update: Lot Withdrawn.

Rovin D4

1951 Rovin D4

Offered by RM Auctions, Amelia Island, Florida, March 10, 2012

Between 1946 and 1953, French manufacturer Rovin produced four models, although only three sold in any number of note. The D4 was the final model, introduced in 1950 and it sold in larger numbers than any other Rovin with 1,203 produced by the time production wrapped up in 1953.

The car features a 462cc two-cylinder engine making 13 horsepower. The tiny car can reach speeds up to 53 mph, which, with tires roughly the size of a pumpkin, I’m sure is quite thrilling.

It’s not exactly something you’ll want to autocross, but if you’re a microcar collector or a collector of unusual and rare vehicles, then this is for you. While trying to think of the last time I saw a Rovin for sale, I fail. This car is in great condition and its estimate reflects that: $40,000-$50,000. That might seem like a steep price per pound, but who knows when you’ll get another chance to buy one.

For the complete auction listing, click here and for the rest of RM at Amelia Island, click here.

Update: Sold $27,500.

Porsche 911 GT1 Evo

1997 Porsche 911 GT1 Evolution

Offered by Gooding & Company | Amelia Island, Florida | March 9, 2012

Photo – Gooding & Company

The Drendel Family Collection of Porsches that Gooding & Company are offering at Amelia Island this year is pretty amazing. The number of competition cars alone is staggering. But of all of them – yes, including the 917/30 we featured last week – this is the one that I want most, granted the street version (yes, they built a GT1 road car) would be even more incredible.

The McLaren F1 won overall at the 1995 24 Hours of LeMans. When Porsche saw this, they said, “Why not us?” Thus they built a prototype race car, seen here, and then added a few road car variants (supposedly 25) to make it legal as a GT1 car. In 1996 they won their class, finishing 2nd and 3rd overall.

1997 was even more competitive with new entries from Mercedes-Benz and Panoz. The 911 GT1 was slightly reworked and dubbed the GT1 Evolution. The car being offered here (chassis #993-GT1-004) was entered with drivers Bob Wolleck, Hans Stuck, and Thierry Bousten. A few hours past halfway, Wolleck spun and crashed and the car was out of the race. The sister car later retired with three hours to go. While this car never won an outright race during its competition history, it was still a serious competitor, placing 3rd at Laguna Seca in its final factory-backed race.

Underneath the rear body work sits a 3.2 liter twin-turbo Flat-6 making around 600 horsepower. On the Mulsanne Straight at Le Mans it was capable of about 205 mph.

There were some great sports-prototype race cars campaigned in the late 1990s. This is one of them. And while I wait for a “Straßenversion” to come up for sale, I guess I will have to settle for this race version with a pre-sale estimate of $900,000-$1,200,000.

Photo – Gooding & Company

For the complete catalog description, click here and for the rest of the Gooding lineup for tomorrow’s auction, click here.

Update: Sold $1,265,000.

Ferrari 212 Inter

1951 Ferrari 212 Inter Coupe by Touring

Offered by Gooding & Company | Amelia Island, Florida | March 9, 2012

Photo – Gooding & Company

Before I get into describing this car, I would like to say that I would really like the following picture in high-resolution so I can use it as desktop wallpaper on my computer:

Photo – Gooding & Company

I don’t know, but it looks pretty awesome. Anyway, the Ferrari 212 Inter was produced only in 1951 and 1952 and only 82 were built in various body styles with coachwork from Touring, Ghia, Vignale, and Pinin Farina. The car seen here is by Carrozzeria Touring.

There was also a rarer 212 Export built, the difference being that the Inter rides on a four-inch longer wheelbase. The Export was intended for the track (only 28 were built) and the Inter was for cruising on the Autostrada. They both used the 2.6 liter “Colombo” V12 making 154 horsepower and were capable of over 100 mph.

The three-year restoration on this car ended in 2003 and it has been well-maintained since. I mean, look at that paint! Rarely does anyone buy a blue Ferrari. Well thankfully, whoever bought this originally, did.

Photo – Gooding & Company

The selling price of this car is estimated between $1,300,000-$1,600,000. To read the complete description (and ownership history), click here (interestingly, the URL for this car says “212 Export”). For the complete Gooding catalog, click here.

Update: Sold $1,375,000.

Porsche 550 Spyder

1955 Porsche 550/1500 RS Spyder

Offered by Gooding & Company | Amelia Island, Florida | March 9, 2012

Photo – Gooding & Company

Shelby Cobras, Ford GT40s, Lotus Sevens and the Porsche 550. These are cars of which replicas far outnumber the real thing. But this is a real Porsche 550 Spyder. Only about 90 550s were built and this one retains everything it originally came with.

The Porsche 550 was a great track-day car back in the mid-1950s (it still is, but they don’t come quite as cheap as they used to). Many of them were used and abused on weekend jaunts to the nearest road course or former air base. The most famous of these cars was James Dean’s “Little Bastard” that he was tragically killed in on his way to a race.

To have an original, unrestored engine in one of these cars is amazing. Nor does it have any replacement bodywork. It was a street car for most of its life, serving as daily transportation at one point (sunny days only, I presume).

And what fun that would be. The 1.5 liter flat-4 makes 125 horsepower, which may not sound like much but consider how much a tiny car like this weighs with all aluminum bodywork. Aluminum bodywork and a lack of interior.

Luxurious comfort is a small thing to sacrifice for a car this amazing. They do not come up for sale often and by “not often” I mean “almost never.” There are few Porsche models that are more collectible, desirable or iconic than this. The price reflects that, estimated between $2,200,000 and $2,600,000. The buyer may adopt the name of James Dean’s infamous car for themselves, but only if they add “lucky” to the beginning of it.

For the complete catalog description, click here and to see the entire lot list, click here.

Update: Sold $3,685,000.

Here’s video of a similar car: