Ford Falcon Clan

1963 Ford Falcon Clan by Ghia

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Online | September 16-25, 2020

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Here is another coachbuilt example of something American you wouldn’t expect to have landed in the hands of an Italian design house. Ford and Ghia have partnered on quite a few show cars over the years, and Ford has actually had a stake in Ghia since 1970. But in the 1950s, Ghia was Chrysler’s turf. That all started to change about the time that this fastback Falcon appeared in 1964.

The car was built on a 1963 Ford Falcon Sprint chassis. It retained the Sprint’s 164-horsepower, 4.3-liter (260ci) V8. Ghia added the fastback body style that RM correctly notes as sort of predicting the upcoming Plymouth Barracuda.

It’s a neat-looking thing, but it somehow makes the relatively ho-hum Falcon appear just as ho-hum, yet even more of the period. I would have totally believed this was a factory body style if I didn’t already know it was a one-off. It’s expected to fetch $40,000-$75,000 (in other words, they have no idea what it’s worth). Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $23,100.

Superdart

1957 Ghia 400 Superdart Concept

For Sale by Dragone Classic Motorcars | Orange, Connecticut

Photo – Dragone Classic Motorcars

This is a car with quite a few names. I’ll start at the beginning, and you can draw your own conclusions as to what it should be called (I just went with what the dealership selling the car calls it). The Ghia and Chrysler connection of the 1950s is well documented. Chrysler spent a lot of money designing fanciful show cars in the ’50s, with styling done by Ghia (well, styling by Exner, execution by Ghia).

Ghia showed a prototype dubbed “Gilda” in 1955. Then there was Dart concept was styled by Exner in 1956, and a second version called the Diablo also appeared in ’56. Then, in 1957, Ghia showed another evolution, called the Superdart. It was reportedly created for Chrysler, but there doesn’t appear to be any Chrysler badging on this car.

Power is from a 400 horsepower Hemi V8, and the car rides on a Chrysler 300C chassis. It debuted at the 1957 Turin Motor Show and later ended up in the U.S., where it was purchased by Dual Motors, who showed the car as a Dual-Ghia prototype. Most of the internet seems to just call this car a 1958 Dual-Ghia Prototype. Which is what it was last shown as. But it’s not what it was called originally.

A private owner purchased it shortly after Dual-Ghia’s 1958 New York show appearance and actually put nearly 40,000 miles on it over nearly two decades. It’s said to be original and unrestored. Be it a Chrysler, a Ghia, or a Dual-Ghia, it remains as a fantastic piece of ’50s styling excellence. It’s for sale in Connecticut with no price listed. Click here for more info.

375 MM Speciale by Ghia

1955 Ferrari 375 MM Coupe Speciale by Ghia

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monterey, California | August 15-17, 2019

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Ferrari 375 MM was a race car. The MM stood for Mille Miglia, the famed Italian road race. That’s what the 26 examples of the 375 MM were destined for, along with the Carrera Panamericana and other similar events.

But sometimes exclusive Ferrari clientele convinced Enzo that his latest race car would make their perfect road car. Such was the case with this car, which was purchased by early Ferrari fan Bob Wilke. It’s powered by a 340 horsepower, 4.5-liter V12 and was the second-to-last 375 MM built.

It carries a striking body by Ghia and was the final Ferrari bodied by that particular carrozzeria. The paint scheme is spot on and compliments the Borrani wire wheels and the overall stance of the car exceptionally well. Debuting at the 1955 Turin Motor Show, the car was retained by Wilke’s family until 1974. It was never restored but has been repainted. It’s one of RM’s “big money Ferraris” and you can read more about it here. Check out more from this sale here.

Update: Not sold.

Serenissima Ghia GT

1968 Serenissima Ghia GT

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 8, 2019

Photo – Artcurial

Here is another Serenissima road car that never got beyond the prototype stage. This unregistered car was shown at the 1968 Turin, Geneva, and New York motor shows. It looks eerily reminiscent of a De Tomaso Mangusta, but with bits of other cars of the era sprinkled in that you just can’t put your finger on.

The design was done by Tom Tjaarda at Ghia. Interestingly enough, Giovanni Volpi, who owned Serenissima, was good friends with Alejandro de Tomaso, who owned Ghia at the time. They joined forces to build this car, which is perhaps why it has that Mangusta DNA in its blood.

Power is from a 3.5-liter V8 that was good for 320 horsepower. This car is still owned by Volpi, who has not used it in a long time. It will require a recommissioning before use, but it is the only example built. Therefore, it should command between $450,000-$675,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $513,883.

Three Prototypes

Three Prototypes

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Auburn, Indiana | September 1, 2018


2004 Ford GT Confirmation Prototype CP4

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

We’ve featured prototypes of the original Ford GT40, but here’s one of what we’ll call the “second coming” of the GT. The original concept car for this model debuted in 2002 and it’s thought that Ford built nine “confirmation prototypes” of which this is CP4, or vehicle #00007. Its purpose was to be the test bed for ride, steering, handling, and climate control systems.

All black, it was the first GT to hit 200 mph. It’s powered by a 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 making 550 horsepower. It joined the collection it is being sold from in 2012 and it is street legal. It’s the only “CP car” from the GT program that is road-registered and not governed to 15 mph. It’s thought that only four GT prototypes remain and this one is selling at no reserve. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $467,500.


1997 Ford Ghia Vivace Concept

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Well here’s a weird one. It looks like the love child of a Ford Ka and a last-gen Mercury Cougar (it’s actually based on a Mondeo platform aka the Ford Contour). It’s honestly pretty crazy this car still exists at all. It’s just a rolling concept car – there’s no engine, no interior. It’s just a two-door coupe body with some wheels on a chassis.

Ford and Ghia teamed up for two concept cars in 1997 just to explore new shapes and using aluminium space-frame construction. The body is fiberglass, the wheels don’t steer, and the doors don’t even open. It’s like having a rolling brick. Not much to do with it other than look at it. But hey, at the same time, you’re going to be the only person who has one. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $1,650.


1960 Seagrave Prototype

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

In 1960, the Seagrave Fire Apparatus, the longest-running producer of fire apparatus in the United States dating back to 1881, decided they wanted to build passenger cars. But not just normal American passenger cars, but economy cars. This in 1960, when American automobiles were perhaps approaching their largest.

This two-door hardtop is much smaller than the photo above makes it look and it weighed in at only 1,700 pounds. Seagrave managed to build three prototypes (two in fiberglass, one in aluminium), and this fiberglass example was powered by a 2.7-liter Continental straight-four engine capable of 65 horsepower. It was pulled out of a barn in Michigan in 2013 and is restoration ready. It’s one of the most interesting cars for sale in Auburn this year. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $11,000.

Ford Ghia Vivace

1997 Ford Ghia Vivace Concept

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Auburn, Indiana | September 1, 2018

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Well here’s a weird one. It looks like the love child of a Ford Ka and a last-gen Mercury Cougar (it’s actually based on a Mondeo platform aka the Ford Contour). It’s honestly pretty crazy this car still exists at all. It’s just a rolling concept car – there’s no engine, no interior. It’s just a two-door coupe body with some wheels on a chassis.

Ford and Ghia teamed up for two concept cars in 1997 just to explore new shapes and using aluminium space-frame construction. The body is fiberglass, the wheels don’t steer, and the doors don’t even open. It’s like having a rolling brick. Not much to do with it other than look at it. But hey, at the same time, you’re going to be the only person who has one. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $1,650.

Plymouth Asimmetrica

1961 Plymouth Asimmetrica Roadster by Ghia

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

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

While based on one of their chassis, this is no hum-drum Plymouth Valiant. This car, dubbed “Asimmetrica” for its asymmetrical design, was one of the last projects kicked off between Chrysler and Ghia during Virgil Exner‘s design reign at Chrysler. Or, at least that’s the thought. Some people say this was a Ghia thing all around.

Built as kind of a successor to the Plymouth XNR Concept, this was supposed to be a “more realistic” car that could actually be built in limited numbers and sold to the general public. Yes, this was the restrained version. The plan was to build a run of 25 of these, but it’s thought that only two were ever made.

Power comes from a NASCAR-spec 2.8-liter Hyper-Pak slant-six making 101 horsepower. Displayed at the 1961 Turin Motor Show and, later, the Geneva Show, this example was purchased off the Geneva stand by novelist Georges Simenon. Acquired and restored by the Blackhawk Collection in 1989, the current owner purchased the car in 2000. A wild example of unrestrained early 60s design, it should bring decent money in Monterey. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $335,000.

Ferrari 212 Europa

1952 Ferrari 212 Europa Cabriolet by Ghia

Offered by Gooding & Company | Amelia Island, Florida | March 9, 2018

Photo – Gooding & Company

The 212 Europa was actually a series of 212 Inter cars that had an “EU” suffix on their chassis and engine numbers. The 212 Inter was introduced in 1951 and lasted through 1952. In all, just 78 examples were made and only the last 29 of those were identified as Europas. It was sort of a stepping stone to the 250 Europa that burst on the scene in 1953.

This car has wonderful style. Bodied by Ghia, it appeared on the 1952 Geneva and Turin Auto Show stands. It was one of two cars like this they built but the cars differ slightly as they were different colors and had minor trim differences. The rear fender skirts make this thing look amazing. It’s powered by a 2.6-liter V-12 making 170 horsepower.

This car has a pretty amazing history. It was in the Detroit area in the 1960s and in 1972 it was found at a swap meet (it had a Corvette engine in it at that point) and traded hands for $600. Ferrari hunter Tom Shaughnessy was able to rescue it in 2011 and it was restored over a six year period thereafter by its next owner. It’s a classic Ferrari with great 1950s styling and it should bring between $1,800,000-$2,200,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,600,000.

Juan Peron’s Ferrari

1952 Ferrari 212 Inter Coupe by Ghia

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Phoenix, Arizona | January 18-19, 2018

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Ferrari’s weren’t always red. In fact, this yellow and black paint scheme with whitewalls and knock-off wire wheels is one of the most brilliant Ferrari road car liveries we’ve seen in a while.

The 212 Inter was introduced at the 1951 Brussels Motor Show and produced in either 73 or 82 examples through the following year. This particular chassis (#49) was on Ferrari’s stand at the 1952 Paris Salon where it was purchased by Juan Perón, President of Argentina. The car remained in his possession until he was forced out of Argentina in 1955. In 1987 it was sold to a European and the car was then restored. The current owner acquired it in 1999

The 212 Inter is powered by a 150 horsepower 2.6-liter V-12. Bodies were supplied by different coachbuilders including Vignale and Touring. This is a one-off body by Ghia and it is fantastic. The proportions are perfect and that understated from end with dim headlights just begs you to buy it. The livery it sports is what it looked like on the Paris stand in 1952.

Early Ferraris are some of the best looking Ferraris and this one has pretty impressive provenance. It is expected to bring between $1,600,000-$2,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,187,500.

Chrysler D’Elegance

1952 Chrysler D’Elegance by Ghia

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | New York, New York | December 6, 2017

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The relationship between Chrysler and Ghia resulted in quite a few different designs during the 1950s. There were a series of Chrysler Specials including this one and this one. There were concept cars and the relationship bore fruit for DeSoto as well. Ghia benefited too, with Chrysler powering the Dual-Ghia and Ghia’s sports cars.

The car you see here, the D’Elegance, was a show car bodied for Chrysler by Ghia on a shortened New Yorker chassis. It’s a gorgeous two-seater with a built-in spare tire where the trunk would be. The engine is a 280 horsepower, 5.8-liter Firepower V-8.

This car has been listed as a 1952 or 1953 in various places, but it was built in 1952 and debuted at the 1952 Paris Auto Show. Each of these Italian-bodied 1950s Chryslers is different, bringing their own heightened sense of style and flair to what was already a stylish automotive landscape in the 1950s. This is definitely one of the best-looking of the lot and it should bring between $900,000-$1,100,000 at auction this December. Note: it sold for $946,000 in August of 2011. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $885,000.