The Lion

1932 Fowler 10HP B6 Showman’s Locomotive

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | October 30, 2020

Photo – Bonhams

Well here’s a new class of vehicle we haven’t featured before. The Showman’s Road Locomotive. It’s basically a steam traction engine that is made to go down the road, helping transport a circus or carnival. And then once it gets to where it’s going, it’s the powerplant for the show. They are very large and very ornate.

This one was manufactured by John Fowler & Co. of Leeds. The company built four B6 “Super Lion” road locomotives. These were the last such machines built, as steam’s popularity was on the wane. The last road locomotive ceased operation in 1958, and most of them ended up scrapped. This example is the first of the four Super Lions, two others of which also survive.

When new, it was used to power carnival rides until it was retired in 1946. It had two owners between 1950 and 2018, and it was restored over a two-year period in the mid-1990s. Like many other showman’s locomotives, it features a full canopy, a front dynamo, and a lot of brass.

Steam traction engines are impressive beasts in the own right, but once you add this sort of over-the-top glamour to them, they really just become awe-inspiring. This one is expected to sell for between $1,000,000-$1,600,000. Why not? Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,195,794.

September 2015 Auction Highlights, Pt. II

We’re still in September and there’s still a lot of auctions. First up, Mecum in Dallas. The top sale was actually a charity car, a 2015 Ford Mustang GT by Petty’s Garage for $535,000. Our featured Panoz AIV brought $30,000. The top non-charity car was this 1992 Ferrari 512 TR for $295,000. Click here for complete results.

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

Next up, Bonhams’ liquidations of the Frederiksen Collection in Ebeltoft, Denmark. The top sale was our featured Duesenberg for $2,664,538. The Maybach would’ve been the top sale, but it didn’t meet its reserve. Other million dollar sales included the Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost Skiff for $1,117,387 and the 1914 Mercedes for $1,401,031. We’ll call this 1924 Lincoln Model L Convertible by LeBaron very well bought for $46,414.

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

The Rolls-Royce Phantom VI exceeded its estimate, bringing $550,098. The Cadillac V-16 Convertible Sedan sold for $429,764. On the less-expensive side of things, the Woods Electric sold for $94,548 and the Renault Victoria went for $120,333. Click here for more results.

Barrett-Jackson’s annual Las Vegas sale was held near the end of September. The top sale was the first 2016 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R that was auctioned for charity. It brought $500,000. The top non-charity car was this 1968 Chevrolet Corvette L88 Coupe for $330,000. Click here for full results.

Photo - Barrett-Jackson

Photo – Barrett-Jackson

Auctionata of Germany held a Ferrari-only sale in Berlin. The top seller was this 1991 Ferrari F40 for $1,217,000. Click here for full results.

Photo - Auctionata

Photo – Auctionata

Finally, Bonhams’ Preserving the Automobile sale in Philadelphia in October – one of our favorite sales of the year. The top seller was a previously-featured Wanderer W25 K Roadster for $319,000. Two of our feature cars failed to sell: the Napier and the Stearns. The most interesting sale has to be this ex-Museum of Science and Industry (of Chicago) 1835 Brathwaite and Ericson “Mississippi” Locomotive for $220,000. It’s believed to be the oldest Southern locomotive in existence and was used by both the North and South during the Civil War.

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Our other feature cars all sold, with the Cleveland Roadster selling for only $7,700. Had I been in Philadelphia for this sale this car would currently be in my garage. Here’s the rest of them:

Click here to see all of the results from this sale.