Aston Martin DP215

1963 Aston Martin DP215 Grand Touring Competition Prototype

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monterey, California | August 24-25, 2018

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

How do you make an Aston Martin DB4GT look downright pedestrian? Well the DB4GT is one of the most sought-after competition Astons… so you’ll have to show up with something pretty intense. Well how about this DP215? It’s the only one the factory made and they built it exclusively for Le Mans.

Aston returned to works sports car racing in 1962 with the DP212, or Design Project 212. It had some aerodynamic issues (like you know, wanting to take off at high speed) and they evolved the car from there. A pair of DP214s raced the 1963 sports car season and the DP215 was the ultimate evolution. It’s a one-off car built to show what Aston’s engineers were capable of. Aerodynamic and with a Kamm tail, this car was extremely fast, hitting just a tick over 198 mph on the Mulsanne Straight.

It’s powered by a 4.0-liter straight-six with aluminium heads that’s good for 323 horsepower. Driven by Phil Hill and Lucien Bianchi at the 1963 24 Hours of Le Mans, this car was 12 seconds a lap faster than a 250 GTO. It ultimately retired due to gearbox failure.

Aston held on to the car until the 1970s, even after selling all of the other DP cars. The engine was separated and wasn’t reunited with the car until about 15 years ago. It’s been expertly restored and it’s been used. As a one-of-one Aston works racer, it’ll bring big money. The proof is that you need to be pre-approved by RM Sotheby’s to even bid on this car. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $21,455,000.

Falcon Competition

1963 Falcon Competition Mk III

Offered by Russo & Steele | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 18-22, 2017

Photo - Russo & Steele

Photo – Russo & Steele

Peter Pellandine’s Falcon Shells (later, Falcon Cars) built kit cars and body shells for cars in England between 1956 and 1964. The first two models they offered were called the Mark 1 and Mark 2. The third car was called the Competition and the fourth car was introduced as the Mark III but sold as the Caribbean. What we have here is a Competition model, sometimes referred to as a Mark III because it was the third model the company built.

This sports racer was originally fitted with running gear from an MG A which has since been swapped out for a Ford Cortina’s 1.3-liter straight-four. The kit cost £560 when new and both a Ford engine and a chassis were included in that price. Or you could just buy the body shell.

This particular example has been active off and on in historic racing since 1994. It’s been recently prepped and is ready to run. It is described as the “last known” Falcon Competition “known to exist.” Either that means it is the only one left or it was the last one built… I’d lean toward the last one left. Either way, you can read more about it here and see more from Russo & Steele here.

Update: Not sold.

Jaguar E-Type Competition

1961 Jaguar E-Type 3.8 Competition Roadster

Offered by H&H Classics | Duxford, U.K. | April 20, 2016

Photo - H&H Classics

Photo – H&H Classics

Jaguar offered two special race car versions of the E-Type: the Low Drag Coupe and the Lightweight. This is neither of those things, even if it is a factory race car. By the time the E-Type arrived in 1961, Jaguar had ceased their factory racing program and, because they still understood the marketing value of one, they offered seven of the first eight (not the very first car, but the next seven) E-Types as race cars.

What that meant was that select people would be sold these cars to take racing as privateers. This car is one of two that went to John Coombs. It was on the track by March of 1961. The engine is the Series I 3.8-liter straight-six which made 265 horsepower in road car form, but these seven racers had a higher compression ratio and competition gearbox, among other special items.

This car has a couple of huge things going for it: first, it’s a fantastically early example of the E-Type (it carries chassis #850007). It’s one of the first eight E-Types built. Additionally it has period race history as a factory-built (but not campaigned) racer – a thing not many E-Types can say. And: it’s one of only seven such E-Types built – and some of those (including the sister John Coombs car) were later reworked into Lightweights. And some of these first seven cars are now just road cars. It’s amazing! And it should be no lightweight at auction, with a pre-sale estimate between $1,000,000-$1,300,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,227,250.

DB HBR5

1959 DB Panhard HBR5 Coupe

Offered by Artcurial | Le Mans, France | July 5, 2014

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

Charles Deutsch and Rene Bonnet began building cars together in 1938. Based near Paris, the 24 Hours of Le Mans became their goal, and in the 1950s, their cars competed there numerous times. This very car raced there three different years.

Their HBR series of cars were produced between 1954 and 1959 and they built several hundred of them with different engines available. This car has a very unique – almost aircraft-like – two-panel windscreen. It had a few engines over the years (depending on which class it was competing in at Le Mans) and was last raced with an 848cc flat-twin. It’s competition history includes:

  • 1959 24 Hours of Le Mans – 31st, DNF (with Alejandro de Tomaso and Colin Davis)
  • 1960 24 Hours of Le Mans – 19th (with Robert Bourharde and Jean-Francois Jaeger)
  • 1961 24 Hours of Le Mans – 21st (with Edgar Rollin and Rene Bartholoni)

This is a three-time factory entry at the 24 Hours. It was active in hillclimbs until 1970 and has been restored to its distinctive “Vitrine” two-windshield configuration. It should sell for between $165,000-$215,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $160,860.

Koenig Evolution Testarossa

1987 Ferrari Testarossa Koenig Competition Evolution II

Offered by Artcurial | Le Mans, France | July 5, 2014

Photo - Artcurial

Photo – Artcurial

The Ferrari Testarossa sort of defines 1980s exotic sports cars (along with the box-ified Countach). But what happens when you need more than just a Testarossa? Well Koenig happens, that’s what.

We’ve featured another Koenig-tuned Ferrari in the past, but this one is decidedly cooler and more extreme. It started life as a Testarossa but within a year of its manufacture, it was in the hands of Koenig Specials in Munich. They applied their Competition Evolution package to it (and later, re-worked it to look more like a 512 M at the front). There’s a little F40 look to it at the back too, no?

The engine is the standard 4.9-liter Flat-12 but it has been tuned to make 800 horsepower. A lot has been revised here and more than you can see. Technical bits have been bettered so that this thing drives a little less wild than it looks. Koenig only modified 21 Testarossas with this (or a similar) package. It should sell for between $110,000-$165,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $160,860.

Aston Martin Ulster

1935 Aston Martin Ulster

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | June 27, 2014

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The Ulster is one of Aston Martin’s most sought-after and glorious models. It’s also quite manly, isn’t it? It just looks like to takes serious brawn to slide over that big exhaust and into the car. What’s even better is that this car competed in some of the biggest races of its day as an Aston factory racer.

The Ulster was built between 1934 and 1936 and only 21 were constructed, making it extremely rare. It was essentially a lightened version of the Aston Mk II and uses a 1.5-liter straight-four making 80 horsepower (although a one-time owner and specialist said that number is more like 120). It could do 100 mph.

This one has some pretty serious race history, including:

  • 1935 Mille Miglia – DNF (with Eddie Hall and “Marsden”)
  • 1935 24 Hours of Le Mans – 8th (with Maurice Faulkner and Tom Clarke)
  • 1935 Targa Abruzzo – 5th, 1st in class (with Count Giovanni Lurani and Ermengildo Strazza)

The first actual owner of this car was an Aston factory driver, Ian Porter-Hargreaves. Marque specialist Derrick Edwards bought it in 1963. It’s been restored to its former glory. Bonhams says that this might be the “most revered” Ulster there is. That’s a big statement. And it carries a big price: $2,400,000-$2,700,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Delahaye Torpedo Roadster

1937 Delahaye 135 Competition Court Torpedo Roadster by Figoni et Falaschi

Offered by RM Auctions | Amelia Island, Florida | March 8, 2014

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

There are cars that serious collectors must have. This is one of those cars. Figoni et Falaschi-bodied cars are some of the most desirable coachbuilt cars in the world. And the Delahaye Torpedo Roadster is one of their most iconic designs. It’s the teardrop bodystyle combined with open air motoring. It is Paris in the 1930s.

The Delahaye 135 was introduced in 1935 and it uses a 3.6-liter straight-six making 95 horsepower. The Competition Court version of the 135 was the top-of-the-line model and this chassis was shipped to Figoni et Falaschi to receive this body for Delahaye, who showed the car at least once before selling it.

This car arrived in New York in 1939 and has been in American ownership since. The engine was actually replaced in 1939 and painted red at some point. In 1970 it was freshened and repainted its original colors – the ones you see here. It’s been with the same owner for 50 years so this is the first time this car has come up for public sale in a long time.

Only 13 streamlined Figoni et Falaschi bodies like this would be built and this is one of only two short-chassis Torpedo Roadsters that still exist. This is a multi-million dollar car with an “estimate available upon request.” Click here for more info and here for more from RM at Amelia Island. And look at these lines – tell me it isn’t worth it:

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

Update: Sold $6,600,000.

Figoni & Falaschi Teardrop Delahaye

1936 Delahaye Type 135 Competition Court Teardrop Coupe by Figoni et Falaschi

Offered by RM Auctions | New York, New York | November 21, 2013

1936 Delahaye Type 135 Competition Court Teardrop Coupe by Figoni et Falaschi

This car is gorgeous. Elegant, French, swoopy lines wrapped around what was then a sporty chassis and engine combination. This car was the 1936 equivalent of – there is no modern equivalent to compare it to. Today’s car companies don’t wrap art around their race cars. It’s all about function. Style like this is, unfortunately, a thing of the past.

The Type 135 was introduced by Delahaye in 1935. There were other models in the line including the 135M and 135MS. This is the base model, which used a 3.2-liter straight-six making up to 110 horsepower. The Type 135 stayed in production until 1940 and did not go back into production after the war like the other two models.

This Competition model (which features bits and pieces from Delahayes race cars, like a shorter chassis and a very rare four-speed manual transmission) was bodied by Figoni & Falaschi by special order. It was the last of six Type 135 Coupes built by the coachbuilder and it is different from the other five: the headlights, for example, are fared into the fenders. This car was also a Delahaye factory demonstrator before being hidden during WWII.

Ownership history is known from the early-1950s (it was likely owned by Delahaye up to that point). It sat parked in Italy for 40 years until being uncovered in the late-90s and restored by its new American owner. It has been displayed here and there, winning awards wherever it goes. Coachbuilt French Teardrops have been popular for a long time and because they are art-in-motion (just like Joseph Figoni intended) they will likely remain so.

This is one of three short-chassis Figoni coupes that still survives. It is estimated to bring between $3,000,000-$4,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from RM in New York.

Update: $2,420,000.

Ferrari 250 GT Speciale

1959 Ferrari 250 GT SWB “Competition” Berlinetta Speciale by Bertone

Offered by RM Auctions | New York, New York | November 21, 2013

1959 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Competition Berlinetta Speciale by Bertone

So many custom-bodied cars in this sale! This one is a Ferrari 250 GT SWB Competition that looks like no other 250 GT SWB Competition. In 1959, Ferrari introduced the model and built 176 examples. It was a GT race car for use in sports car racing all over the world. After racing it, you could then drive the car home on the road. Racing was more interesting when your daily driver could be competitive on track, don’t ya think?

Only six of the 176 received non-Ferrari coachwork. This is one of two by Bertone and the only one with a design that looks like it came from 10+ years from the future. Imagine taking a race car today, sending it to a coachbuilder, and taking home a very friendly-looking road car with race car mechanicals. The engine is a 3.0-liter V-12 making in the neighborhood of 276 horsepower.

This car was shown at the 1960 Geneva Auto Salon and at the Turin Motor Show later that same year. It has been restored twice in its life and has won awards at Pebble Beach twice (that’s how long this thing has been on the circuit). It’s absolutely stellar. It should sell for between $6,500,000-$8,500,000. Check out more here and click here for more from RM in New York City.

Update: Sold $7,040,000.