Trumbull Cyclecar

1915 Trumbull 15B Cyclecar

Offered by Bonhams | Chichester, U.K. | April 7, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

The Trumbull Motor Car Company of Bridgeport, Connecticut, was founded by brothers Alexander and Isaac Trumbull. They bought the rights to a cyclecar designed by Harry J. Stoops and put it into production in Connecticut in 1914.

Power is from an inline-four engine making 14/18 horsepower. Cyclecars gained a bad reputation in the US, so Trumbull found success overseas, selling 3/4 of their cars in Europe and Australia.

Sadly, Isaac Trumbull was aboard the Lusitania when it was torpedoed in 1915 – along with 20 Trumbull cars. After his death, the company was closed. This rare example should bring between $26,000-$33,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Four More from Artcurial

Four More from Artcurial

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 9, 2018


1931 Villard Type 31A

Photo – Artcurial

Sté de Automobiles Villard existed in France between 1925 and 1935. They were primarily known for building a three-wheeled cyclecar. They sold some four-wheeled cars in 1927 and in 1931 introduced this as their “export” model. The intent for this particular model was to be sold in the United States, but it seems unlikely Villard ever moved many of them there.

It’s powered by a 500cc V-4. It’s said that this is the only such Villard known to exist, which might mean that it is the original prototype (which was known to have survived after successfully finding its way to the U.S.). In all, only 20 Villard automobiles of any type are known to exist. This one, in relatively good shape, should bring between $9,500-$15,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $21,903.


1922 EHP Type B3

Photo – Artcurial

EHP, which stands for Établissememts Henri Precloux, after the man who founded it, built cars out of La Garenne-Colombes, Paris, between 1921 and 1929. EHP cars are notable for being shaft-driven and also for their competition outings, something many cyclecar manufacturers did not do.

This Type B3 is powered by a 893cc SCAP straight-four. A tiny, two-seat coupe, this car is in need of a full restoration. EHP cars aren’t seen often and this one should bring between $7,000-$12,000. Interesting note… there were all these guys who founded car companies before 1930 and when they failed, no one really knows what happened to them. Well it turns out that, in the 1960s, Henri Precloux was working as a welder in Paris. Fun fact. Click here for more about this car.

Update: Sold $26,284.


1925 Monet & Goyon Type VM2 Cyclecar

Photo – Artcurial

Here is a cyclecar from a cycle manufacturer. Monet-Goyon was founded in 1917 by Joseph Monet and Adrien Goyon in France. As a motorcycle manufacturer, the company existed until 1959 – which is a fairly long time and their post-war bikes are fairly common. But few remember that for a few years in the 1920s they experimented with light automobiles.

The Type VM2 is powered by a 350cc single-cylinder Villiers engine making six horsepower. It has chain-drive and is apparently very light. Not many examples of Monet & Goyon’s four-wheeled vehicles still exist and few are as complete (if not as original) as this. It should bring between $7,000-$15,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $7,301.


1911 Renault CB Surbaisse

Photo – Artcurial

We’ve done a couple of these posts the last few weeks featuring really obscure marques of cars. While this may be a Renault, it is too bizarre to pass up. The Type CB was introduced in 1911 and was Renault’s mid-range model, featuring a 12 horsepower straight-four.

The body is a Victoria-type with an uncomfortable front bench for the chauffeur (featuring no seat back… good posture required). The rear has a convertible top, which only does you any good if the sun is behind you. Otherwise you’re A) still getting burned by the sun; B) still getting wet and; C) still getting hit with bugs. This honestly just looks like a horse-drawn carriage you’d find in Central Park but with a big air-cooled motor up front. It’s unusual and should bring between $42,500-$67,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $36,505.

G.A.R. Cyclecar

1925 G.A.R. Type B1 Bi-place Sport

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | November 5, 2017

Photo – Artcurial

Cyclecars G.A.R. was founded in 1922 to take advantage of a light car craze that took off during the 1920s. Not everyone could afford a Bugatti, but Mr. Gardahaut thought he could do well selling a Bugatti look-a-like that featured a small engine without much weight. Cyclecars qualified for certain tax breaks in France as well, bolstering their popularity.

This car is powered by a Chapuis-Dornier 1.0-liter straight-four. The cars had to weigh under 350kg to qualify for cyclecar status, which this one does. This sporty car was a fairly typical example of such a car.

The current owner acquired this car from a museum a decade ago and the restoration is older, so it will require a re-commissioning before use. The body is wood wrapped in canvas, which really helps on the weight front. If you notice, there aren’t any headlights, so night trips are not recommended! G.A.R. disappeared after 1931 and this rarity should bring between $17,750-$23,500. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Artcurial’s lineup.

Update: Sold $20,750.

Spacke Cyclecar

1913 Spacke Cyclecar Prototype

Offered by RM Auctions | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 9, 2014

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

Indianapolis, Indiana’s Spacke Machine Company was responsible for a great many of the small, one-and-two-cylinder cyclecar engines that putt-putted around America and Europe during the 1910s.

One thing they did not do, however, was build their own production automobile. Fred W. Spacke died in January of 1915 and his sons soon sold the business. In 1919, the new company built a car and offered it for sale. No takers. They tried it again in 1920. Nothing doing. There are only three known cars carrying the Spacke name. And this one is unique.

It was built either in 1912 or 1913 and is a cyclecar, unlike the later examples. It uses one of Spacke’s own 13 horsepower, 1.2-liter engines. It’s the only Spacke automobile built prior to WWI and it never entered production. The car has been recently restored and looks beautiful. It should sell for between $30,000-$50,000. Click here for more info and here for the rest of RM’s Hershey lineup.

Update: Sold $38,500.

G.N. Cyclecar

1914 G.N. Cyclecar

Offered by RM Auctions | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 9, 2014

Photo - RM Auctions

Photo – RM Auctions

The G.N. company was founded by two men who would later produce sports cars independently of each other: H.R. Godfrey and Archibald Frazer-Nash (later of H.R.G. and Frazer-Nash, respectively). G.N. operated out of London between 1910 and 1923. The car came about at the perfect time as 1910 was about the year that the cyclecar craze really took off.

Cyclecars are all about being tiny, light vehicles that used wheels not much bigger than those on your penny-farthing. Because of their tiny engines, they could be registered as motorcycles – thus they were cheap to purchase and own. The engine here is a front-mounted 1.1-liter twin making 10 horsepower. I don’t know how much it weighs, but I would estimate “not much.”

The body work is simple and it’s technically a two-seater, if both driver and passenger are relatively minuscule. The interior was redone long ago and the paint is fresher than that – but otherwise this car is believed to be original. It should bring between $40,000-$60,000 and offer a lot of fun at that price. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $110,000.

Swift Cyclecar

1913 Swift 7HP Twin-Cylinder Two-Seater Cyclecar

Offered by Bonhams | Beaulieu, U.K. | September 6, 2014

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The Swift Motor Co Ltd. of Coventry began as a sewing machine manufacturer. They turned to cars in 1900 and their specialty was those of the small variety. Swift were among the pioneers of the cyclecar movement that swept the world (most of Europe and the U.S.) between 1910 and the 1920s.

The twin-cylinder cyclecar was introduced by Swift in 1912 (replacing a single-cylinder model). The engine is a 972cc twin making seven horsepower. The car is tiny, light, and will seat two. I quite like the looks of it.

This car has been known in the collector world since 1959 and was used regularly up until 1968 before it became more of a static showpiece. The interior is mighty old if not original – same for the engine. It is a driver and the body and brass are in great shape. It should sell for between $23,000-$27,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $33,826.

Warne Cyclecar

1913 Warne 8

Offered by Coys | Graz, Austria | October 12-13, 2013

1913 Warne 8hp Cyclecar

I love it when fine examples of short-lived automobile manufacturers survive for 100 years. This Warne 8 cyclecar is 100 years old. The company, Pearsall-Warne Ltd, was founded in Letchworth in 1913. It only lasted through 1915.

Light cars were all the rage in that day. A lot of companies popped up and built cars of varying quality with varying success. Warne may not have had a lot of success, but they had quality down. The engine is an eight horsepower 1.0-liter V-twin from J.A.P. and the price was a crazy-low-sounding £99!

The car is simple, yes, but it does have a convertible top, lights and it is belt-driven (for weight reasons). I don’t know how many were made in total, but it is said the company built six of them a week. This is car #57. You can read more here and check out more from Coys here.

Update: Sold for about $10,800.

Benjamin Cyclecar

1922 Benjamin Type B

Offered by Bonhams | Oxford, U.K. | March 2, 2013

1922 Benjamin Type B

Benjamin was a French marque, founded in 1921 by Maurice Jeanson. The company built light cars until 1926. After that they were known as Benova. Benova was gone after 1931. This car is from the second year of Benjamin manufacture.

It uses a 750cc straight-four. It has an interesting history – being driven in the 1922 Bol d’Or by Violette Morris – a renowned French athlete of the 1910s and 20s and Nazi collaborator who was killed by the French resistance during the war. This car didn’t leave France until the 1980s, when it was imported into the U.K. It hasn’t been restored as much as “refurbished” as needed.

This car has taken part in many classic car events in the U.K. and France and appeared in numerous articles. It was even owned by the V.P. of the Vintage Sports Car Club of the U.K. You don’t see Benjamin’s everyday – but you could see this one everyday for between $14,000-$22,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams in Oxford.

Update: Sold $29,500.

Woods Mobilette Cyclecar

1914 Woods Mobilette Tandem Roadster

Offered by Bonhams | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania | October 8, 2012

How cool is this car? It’s a tandem-seat cyclecar. It seats two, the driver in front and the passenger directly behind him or her. This car is long, tall, and skinny and looks like it would tip over if a curve was taken too quickly, but with practically no weight (less than 500 lbs), it would probably stay on the ground just fine.

Francis A. Woods built his first prototype in 1910 but the Woods Mobilette Company of Harvey, Illinois didn’t begin production on this cyclecar until early 1914. Bonhams lists this as a “circa 1913” and 1914 is certainly “circa 1913.” The engine is a 12 horsepower, 1.1-liter L-head four-cylinder. It would do 40 mph and retailed for $380.

Cyclecars were a big thing in the Teens and this is one of the best of the hundreds of different marques produced in the United States. They were affordable and basic, but the Model T managed to undercut them all – and kill off the fad. Production ceased at the end of 1916. This is one of only a few examples of the Woods Mobilette still extant and it’s way cool. It is expected to sell for between $20,000-$30,000. For more info, click here. And for more from Bonhams “Preserving the Automobile” sale, click here.

Update: Sold $48,300.

1913 Humberette

1913 Humber Humberette 8HP Two-Seater

Offered by Bonhams | Beaulieu, U.K. | September 8, 2012

Like many automotive manufacturers, Humber began as a bicycle company. Founded as such in 1868 by Thomas Humber, their first car didn’t appear until 1898, a three-wheeler. Four-wheelers appeared in 1901. “Humberette” was applied to light (single-cylinder) Humbers in 1903 and 1904 and then it went missing until after 1910.

The cyclecar fad was sweeping the U.K. in the early teens and Humber eagerly opted in, bringing the Humberette name back from the great beyond for their v-twin powered cyclecars, like the one you see here. This has a 996cc V-Twin making eight horsepower. Unlike most of its competition, this cyclecar has shaft drive, as Humber was not a fan of the much more common chain drive.

Humberette was not technically its own marque but the cars are often referred to as if they were. The Humberette name disappeared again at the start of WWI. The Humber name lasted until 1976, being killed during the Chrysler Europe fiasco. This car was restored at some point and has seen little use over the last quarter century in the hands of its current owner. The pre-sale estimate is $17,000-$22,000. For the complete description, click here and for more from Bonhams at the National Motor Museum, click here.

Update: Sold $36,809.