The Fabulous Hudson Hornet

1952 Hudson Hornet 6 NASCAR

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Shipshewana, Indiana | August 4, 2018

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Worldwide Auctioneers is liquidating the greatest collection of Hudson motorcars in the world. And after studying the catalog, I’m pretty sure this is the crown jewel (Italia included). Hudson’s Hornets dominated NASCAR in the early 1950s with legendary drivers like Marshall Teague, Tim Flock, Dick Rathmann, Buck Baker, and Herb Thomas. This was Herb Thomas’ actual race car from 1952 and 1953.

The Hornets were an underdog car that quickly rose to the top. They were six-cylinder cars in an eight-cylinder world. But their chassis design made the cars quick and nimble. Documents show this car was sold to Herb Thomas in July of 1952 to replace a wrecked Hornet. Driven to 15 victories, this very car led Thomas to the 1953 NASCAR championship. After the ’53 season, this chassis was retired and sold to a private owner who used it as a normal road car.

A different owner acquired it in the 1970s hoping to get it roadworthy. That never happened but by this point its racing heritage had been forgotten. It wasn’t until that owner sold the car to a former Hudson dealer and then-current parts supplier that the history of this car was uncovered. A sympathetic restoration followed, leaving the interior mostly intact.

The engine is a 5.0-liter straight-six with Hudson’s “Twin H-Power” intake system – all good for 170 horsepower (up from 145 from a car off the showroom floor). This is the only surviving example of the “Fabulous Hudson Hornet” racing program of the 1950s. Its legacy cemented by Paul Newman’s character in the Pixar movie Cars and a truly legendary NASCAR racer, this will remain collectible forever. Click here for more info and here for more from this awesome sale.

Two Shelby Prototypes

Two Shelby Prototypes

Offered by Bonhams | Greenwich, Connecticut | June 3, 2018


1997 Shelby Aurora V-8 Can-Am

Photo – Bonhams

The Shelby Can-Am was a racing series that used purpose-built race cars from Carroll Shelby. All cars were identical and powered by 255 horsepower V-6 engines. The series – which was open to amateurs – ran from 1991 through 1996 in the U.S.

Originally, Shelby wanted to offer a bigger, badder version of the car. He only built one prototype – and this is it. It’s powered by the then-popular 4.0-liter Oldsmobile Aurora V-8. It was tuned to make 500 horsepower and was the same engine used in the Series 1 sports car. This is the only example built and it ran some test laps at Willow Springs but otherwise has been sitting in Ol’ Shel’s personal collection since. This would be a fun track day toy for someone and it should cost them between $20,000-$25,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $100,800.


1983 Dodge Shelby Ram Prototype

Photo – Bonhams

The first generation of the Dodge Ram was produced from 1981 through 1993. The beginning of production coincided time-wise with Chrysler’s relationship with Carroll Shelby. You might think it’s weird to have Shelby’s name on a truck, but hey, he built a Dakota and a Durango.

This one-off Ram was partly a styling exercise (to mimic the styling of the recently introduced Shelby Charger). But because Shelby couldn’t help himself, the motor was spruced up as well: it’s a 300 horsepower, 5.9-liter V-8. It’s a pretty decked out truck all around. This is coming from Carroll’s personal collection where he maintained this 11,000 mile truck since new. It should sell for between $10,000-$15,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $33,040.

Ferrari F1/87

1987 Ferrari F1/87

Offered by Bonhams | Monaco | May 11, 2018

Photo – Bonhams

This is a pure 1980s Formula One car. The F1/87 was Ferrari’s entrant for the 1987 F1 season. Their drivers were Gerhard Berger (who won the last two races of the year in a similar car) and Michele Alboreto, who drove this one. This car, interestingly, is chassis #100 – which it means that it was Ferrari’s 100th Grand Prix car built since they started that numbering sequence in 1961.

This car is powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged V-6 that was capable of 950 horsepower in qualifying trim. That’s a lot of power from such a tiny engine. The car improved as the year went on (hence Berger’s two wins) and this was a mid-season car, used by Alboreto in the following races:

  • 1987 Hungarian Grand Prix – 19th, DNF
  • 1987 Austrian Grand Prix – 18th, DNF
  • 1987 Italian Grand Prix – 23rd, DNF
  • 1987 Portuguese Grand Prix – 16th, DNF

Okay, so maybe not Ferrari’s most successful chassis. And definitely not Alboreto’s most successful F1 season. This car has been on long-term static display and appears to be entirely original (because it looks like it’s been used). It is noted that a complete mechanical recommissioning will be necessary before any future use. Still though, it’s a Ferrari F1 car. In this condition, it’s expected to bring between $790,000-$1,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams.

Update: Not sold.

McLaren MP4/8A

1993 McLaren-Cosworth MP4/8A

Offered by Bonhams | Monaco | May 11, 2018

Photo – Bonhams

There aren’t a lot of McLaren Formula One cars in private hands. There are even fewer Monaco Grand Prix-winning, ex-Aryton Senna McLaren Formula One cars in private hands. And that’s exactly what we have here. This car, chassis MP4/8-6, was purchased by the current owner directly from McLaren in 2006.

It’s an MP4/8A (or just an MP4/8 as the “B” variant was a Lamborghini-powered test car), which was McLaren’s 1993 race car. The team’s drivers were Aryton Senna and Michael Andretti (who was replaced by Mika Hakkinen for the last three races of the season). The race history for this chassis includes:

  • 1993 Spanish Grand Prix – 2nd (with Senna)
  • 1993 Monaco Grand Prix – 1st (with Senna)
  • 1993 Canadian Grand Prix – 18th, DNF (with Senna)
  • 1993 French Grand Prix – 4th (with Senna)
  • 1993 British Grand Prix –  5th (with Senna)
  • 1993 German Grand Prix – 4th (with Senna)
  • 1993 Belgian Grand Prix – 4th (with Senna)
  • 1993 Italian Grand Prix – 21st, DNF (with Senna)

This was McLaren’s first season with Ford-Cosworth power after years with Honda. This car uses a 3.5-liter naturally-aspirated Ford-Cosworth V-8. Power was about 680 horsepower, one of the lowest numbers on the grid. This chassis contains the exact same engine and transmission that was in the car when it won in Monaco.

It’s pretty amazing as a car and even more amazing that someone gets to actually own this and it isn’t a display piece in a museum. Think about it: you can own and drive a Monaco-winning McLaren that Ayrton Senna used. Sure, there are other Senna-driven cars out there, but would you rather have a Toleman or a McLaren? Exactly. This is the only car in Bonhams’ sale that doesn’t have a pre-sale estimate, which should give you a hint as to the expected price. You should check out more about this car here and you can see more from Bonhams in Monaco here.

Update: Sold $5,009,296.

Ferrari 625 TF

1953 Ferrari 625 TF by Vignale

Offered by Bonhams | Monaco | May 11, 2018

Photo – Bonhams

If you like ultra-rare early Ferrari factory race cars, then Bonhams has the car for you. This is a Ferrari 625 TF (for Targa Florio). Built in 1953 only, it was the first closed-wheel, four-cylinder race car from Ferrari.

A four-cylinder Ferrari? Of course! It’s the legendary 2.5-liter Lampredi straight-four and that Lampredi engine would go on to power Ferrari’s Monza line of racing cars. In this guise, it’s good for 220 horsepower… not a far cry from the 237 horsepower produced by the 250 MM’s V-12.

Only three examples of the 625 TF were built and each of them are markedly different, showing signs of evolution from chassis to chassis. This car features open body work from Vignale but in its earliest form carried a different body. Enzo didn’t like the original and so here we are.

This chassis spent its competitive days racing around Italy with the likes of Mike Hawthorn and Umberto Maglioli behind the wheel before being exported to a new owner in Argentina toward the end of 1953. It raced in Argentina and Brazil thereafter, competing into the early 1960s. In the mid-1970s it was discovered in a scrapyard in Naples, Italy, with a Lincoln V-12 stuffed under the hood. It was restored in the 1980s and again by its current owner in the 2000s.

Ferrari road racers from the golden era of sports car racing – and those that Enzo had a hand in – are just wonderful things. This sheer exclusivity of this the 625 TF makes it a great opportunity. It’ll be expensive though: this car carries an estimate of $5,500,000-$8,000,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Jordan 199

1999 Jordan-Honda 199

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monaco | May 12, 2018

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Eddie Jordan’s Formula One team got its start in 1991 and lasted through the 2005 season (before it became Midland F1). The team is now operating as Force India. The Jordan 199 – which was their car for the 1999 season – was their most successful. The original engine used during the season was a naturally-aspirated, 3.0-liter Honda V-10. One of those engines is still in this car.

The team’s drivers that year included former champion Damon Hill and team-newcomer Heinz-Harald Frentzen. Frentzen won two races in 1999 competing for Jordan. This chassis, #003, includes the following race history:

  • 1999 Australian Grand Prix – 2nd (with Frentzen)
  • 1999 Brazilian Grand Prix – 3rd (with Frentzen)

And that was it. It was the team’s spare car for the remainder of the season but was not needed and never saw competitive action in F1 again. This is a fairly modern F1 car. Sure, it doesn’t have the complicated powerplants today’s cars have, but it is a serious machine capable of incredible performance. Novices need not apply. F1 cars of this recent vintage are pretty hard to come by and since it’s usable, it’ll attract a good price. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $284,447.

Senna’s Toleman TG184

1984 Toleman-Hart TG184

Offered by Bonhams | Monaco | May 11, 2018

Photo – Bonhams

Toleman Motorsport was a short-lived Formula One team based in Witney, U.K. While they might be a somewhat forgotten team from 30+ years ago, they did give a certain Brazilian (um, Ayrton Senna) his first F1 ride. And this very car was raced by Senna himself.

The TG184 was the second-to-last F1 car used by the Toleman team. It debuted at the fifth round of the 1984 World Championship and, under Senna, it was the team’s most successful car. The race history for this chassis includes:

  • 1984 Monaco Grand Prix – 2nd (with Senna)
  • 1984 Canadian Grand Prix – 7th (with Senna)
  • 1984 British Grand Prix – 3rd (with Senna)

This car was designed by Rory Byrne and Pat Symonds and it looks like a 1980s F1 car. But that sort of dual rear wing is pretty interesting. The Hart engine is a turbocharged 1.5-liter straight-four that could produce 600 horsepower. 1985 was a rough year for Toleman and they gave this chassis to driver Stefan Johansson in lieu of salary. He kept the car until 1994 when the next owner acquired it.

This car failed to sell at a 2012 Silverstone Auctions sale and at that point in time it was unrestored and all-original. Anything Senna-related has become increasingly valuable since his death and it seems like lately that things have really started taking off. A 1985 Toleman (though without engine) sold for $48,000. This Senna-raced (and non-winning) car is expected to bring between $920,000-$1,200,000. That’s a pretty big Senna-factor! Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,921,374.

Benetton B192

1992 Benetton-Ford B192

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monaco | May 12, 2018

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Benetton became a Formula One constructor for the 1986 season and their first car, the B186, was driven by Gerhard Berger and Teo Fabi. In 1991, Michael Schumacher joined the team and we’ve featured the very Benetton car he scored his first F1 podium with.

In 1989 the team switched to a new Ford power plant (their HB engine). It’s a 3.5-liter naturally-aspirated V-8. The B192 chassis (of which this is the first example) was introduced by the team for the fourth race of the season, the Spanish Grand Prix and it replaced the earlier B191B. The race history for this chassis includes:

  • 1992 Spanish Grand Prix – 2nd (with Michael Schumacher)

And that’s it. After that, it was the team’s spare car for San Marino and Monaco. The car was never damaged and still retains a Ford HB race engine. It sports the correct as-raced Camel livery. This is a rare chance to acquire a Michael Schumacher-raced Formula One car (and the car he scored his first 2nd place finish in). Big money required (but I guess if you’re going race car shopping in Monaco you’re probably covered). Click here for more info and here for more from RM in Monaco.

Update: Sold $960,929.

Attila-Chevrolet

1965 Attila-Chevrolet Mk 3

Offered by Bonhams | Goodwood, U.K. | March 18, 2018

Photo – Bonhams

Attila was the brand name used on sports racing cars built by Racing Developments of London. The company only operated in 1964 and 1965 and was the brainchild of Mark Perry and Val Dare-Bryan. Their cars were made in extremely limited numbers.

This Mk 3 features a tubular spaceframe chassis and has a 5.0-liter Chevrolet V-8 mounted behind the driver. This particular chassis was built for a wealthy gentleman driver and it was used in competition around the U.K. into the 1970s.

Active on the historic circuit, this Attila would be welcome at most events. It is one of three Mk 3 chassis built (and one of two known), with total Attila production totaling not much more than that. A sleek 1960s racer, this car should bring between $125,000-$150,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams.

Update: Not sold.

Four Racers from Artcurial

Four Racers from Artcurial

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


1949 Simca 8 Barquette by Motto

Photo – Artcurial

The Simca 8 was a family car built by Simca in France between 1937 and 1951. It was offered in a variety of body styles and two engines were offered, one before 1949 and a slightly larger one after 1949. This 1949 car originally featured a race-prepped version of the earlier, 1.1-liter straight-four.

It was originally a road car, but was transformed into a racing barquette by a racing driver in 1950. The body was built in aluminium by Motto, an Italian coachbuilder. Once race-ready, the owner promptly registered it for the road! It was entered for the 1951 24 Hours of Le Mans but never showed up, though it did compete in some other French sports car races in the early 1950s.

Discovered again after 2000, it was restored and the engine was redone and enlarged to 1.2-liters. It’s just destined for the historic circuit with its new owner. It’ll likely bring between $275,000-$335,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1930 Chenard et Walcker 1500 Type Y8 Tank

Photo – Artcurial

Here’s my pick of these four. The Chenard & Walcker Y8 was introduced at the 1927 Paris Motor Show and was built through 1930. It’s powered by a 1.5-liter straight-four and it’s called a “Tank.” Chenard & Walcker were famous for their tanks, which were kind of squared off yet aerodynamic cars that were mainly destined for the track. Bugatti also built some racing “tanks” around this era as well.

This is a two-seat convertible and it probably doesn’t have racing history, but plenty Chenard tanks saw track action. It’s been in collections for decades and is largely original. No one knows how many of these were built, but there aren’t that many around. This one should bring between $85,000-$160,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $94,913.


1963 Rene Bonnet Aerodjet LM6

Photo – Artcurial

When Rene Bonnet left Deutsch-Bonnet in 1961, he set up shop building cars under his own name. His first new model was the Djet and what we have here is a racing version of the road car. It’s powered by a Renault-Gordini 1.1-liter straight-four and the body is fiberglass.

This car was raced at the 1963 24 Hours of Le Mans with Bruno Basini and Robert Bouharde behind the wheel. It finished the race, but did not complete the minimum distance, ultimately resulting in an official “Not Classified” result, but more realistically they were 14th.

The current owner bought the car in 1989 and it was restored, with a 1.3-liter Gordini striaght-four installed in place of the original. Only three of these longtail LM6 Aerodjets were built and this is the nicest, most original one left. It should sell for between $300,000-$425,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Not sold.


1956 Riffard-Renault Tank Record

Photo – Artcurial

I’m just going to go ahead and say it: this looks like one of those tin toys that kids played with in the 1950s. In reality, it started life as as one of two custom-built Guépard race cars that were built in 1952 and 1953. Both competed in a race in 1954 and this one crashed.

The owner took it and while repairing it, decided to turn it into a World Speed Record car. Designed by Marcel Riffard, it’s a sleek, Renault-powered streamliner with a body by Heuliez. The engine is a 750cc four-cylinder and it’s unknown if it ever attempted any records, but it did do a speed run in 1998 after decades in a private collection. It’s a unique car and should bring between $18,000-$30,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $70,090.