Spartan II

1986 Spartan II

Offered by Mecum | Houston, Texas | April 2-4, 2020

Photo – Mecum

The Spartan was initially produced by Spartan Motors of Santa Ana, California, in about 1983. They later relocated to San Marcos, California, and became the Spartan Motorcar Company. In 1998 – yes the company was still around in 1998 – production was shifted to the Table Mountain Rancheria, an Indian reservation in Friant, California. They wanted to keep building them. It is unknown if they were successful.

While the initial Spartan was based on the Datsun 280ZX (and could be purchased at Datsun dealers, which is insane), the Spartan II was based on the Z31 Nissan 300ZX. It features a 3.0-liter V6 that made 160 horsepower when new.

It’s a polarizing car, I know. But these are one of the more common neo-classics. They were liked enough when new that this company was around for nearly 15 years. Go out and get you one! Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $12,650.

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.

Chevrolet Engineering Research Vehicle II

1964 Chevrolet CERV II

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

1964 Chevrolet CERV II

The Chevrolet CERV (Chevrolet Engineering Research Vehicle) program was a series of five cars that were test beds for upcoming models (generally Corvette-related). The original CERV-I of the late-50s was more of an open-wheel race car than a road-going prototype.

The CERV-II was completed in 1964 and it was built under the supervision of Zora Arkus-Duntov, the father of the Corvette. Remember how every time a new generation of the Corvette is on the horizon, rumors abound that it will be mid-engined? Well you can thank this car for that. It is indeed mid-engined and came about the same time as the GT40. Duntov wanted to build five or six of them and compete at Sebring and Le Mans. The racing plans were quashed by GM, but one car was built anyway.

The first engine was a 6.2-liter V-8 making 500 horsepower. Dependent on gearing, it could do 0-60 mph in 2.8 seconds or top out at 212 mph. Both are extremely impressive today. Also: it was four-wheel drive, which was unheard of in a sports racing car like this back in the day.

Later on, Duntov found a 7.0-liter (427) ZL1 V-8 engine and stuffed it behind the driver’s seat. It is conservatively estimated to make 550 horsepower (probably more like 700 in reality). It also weighs 1,848 pounds! Duntov thought it could’ve broken Mark Donohue’s 221+ mph closed-course speed record. It was never attempted.

The car was later donated to the Briggs Cunningham Museum in California and remained there until it closed in 1986 and was sold. The current owner bought it in 2001 and made sure every piece was period-correct. Just about everything on this car is original, including the paint, which is part of the reason this is probably the coolest car in this sale (and this sale is packed tight with unbelievable cars). Just the fact that it is so outrageous and has survived this long is a testament to how important these Corvette technology test cars are.

If you’re a serious Corvette collector, this is a car you must have. It should sell for between $1,400,000-$1,800,000. You can check out more here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $1,100,000.