1971 AC 428 Fastback
Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 13, 2021
With the Americans really stealing AC’s thunder, the company decided to launch a grand tourer model instead. They took an extended Cobra chassis and dropped a Pietro Frua-designed body over it in 1965. The body featured an aluminum trunk lid and hood.
For power, they turned to Ford. A 7.0-liter (428ci) FE V8 was chosen, and when fitted with a four-barrel carburetor, generated 345 horsepower. The big issue was two-fold. First, the cars were expensive to produce, as the chassis were built in England, shipped to Turin to get a body fitted, and then returned to England to be completed. Second, the big engine put off a lot of heat, a lot of which would end up in the cabin.
This Fastback is one of 51 produced and one of about 80 428s (or Fruas, as they are also known) produced in total. It is expected to sell for between $150,000-$200,000. Click here for more info.
Update: Sold $173,600.
1968 AC 428 Spider
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monterey, California | August 12-14, 2021
And here we have the drop-top version of the AC 428/Frua. It features essentially the same Frua styling but with a retractable cloth roof. Power was also provided by a 345 horsepower, 7.0-liter Ford V8.
The Spider variant is even rarer than the already-scarce Fastback. Just 30 were built out of the total run of 81 cars. This is sort of the peak example of the last true, stylish AC car. Sure, the company is still around, but everything after this really lacked the same sense of style. Not to mention that, once the 428 went out of production in 1973, AC didn’t offer another car until the 3000ME came along in 1979.
No pre-sale estimate is available at this time, but it is worth more than the coupe. You can read more about it here.
Update: Sold $302,000.