Reliant Regal

1957 Reliant Regal Mk III

Offered by Bonhams | Scottsdale, Arizona | January 2024

Photo – Bonhams

The Reliant Motor Company is most famous for its three-wheeled vehicles, notably the Robin (and by extension, the Rialto). But prior to the Robin there was this, the Regal. It went on sale in 1952 and lasted for over 20 years before being replaced by the Robin in 1973.

Over that 20 years, they produced seven different series of Regal. This is a Mk III, which was introduced in 1956. It featured an all-fiberglass body and a 747cc inline-four that made 16 horsepower. The Mk IV arrived in 1958.

Bigger engines came later, but this could get to 60 mph if you tried (and how fast do you really want to go on three wheels?). Plus it’s a convertible. These are rarely seen in the U.S., and this one is going at no reserve. Click here for more info.

An Underslung Regal

1912 Regal Model T Touring

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 6-7, 2016

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby's

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Detroit’s Regal Motor Car Company isn’t the most remembered automobile manufacturer to come out of Michigan, but boy did they produce some attractive cars. Brothers Charles, J.E., and Bert Lambert teamed up with Fred Haines to form the company in 1907. In their 11 years they produced some more traditional-looking (for the day) cars as well as this hot new thing called the Underslung.

An Underslung chassis is defined as a chassis where the chassis itself is suspended from the axles which lowers the car dramatically. Improvements from this include a lower center of gravity and awesome handling (for 1912 anyway). Because roads were more of an afterthought in the  day, larger wheels could be fitted to maintain ground clearance. The most famous example of these cars are the beautiful American Underslungs. Regal’s version went on sale in 1910.

This car is powered by a 25 horsepower 3.3-liter straight-four. The Model T (Ford’s trademark lawyers were apparently not quite as ruthless in 1912 as they are today) was the Touring model, although you could get a Roadster or Coupe with this engine. This is one of two survivors of this model and would be about as much fun as you can have driving a car from 104 years ago. Click here for more from RM Sotheby’s and here for more about this car.

Update: Not sold.

Buick GNX

1987 Buick GNX

Offered by Mecum | Chicago, Illinois | October 9-11, 2014

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

You’re looking at the coolest American car of the 1980s. Also, one of the most collectible. Isn’t it kind of strange that one of the most desirable American cars of the last 25-ish years is a Buick?

The second generation Regal entered production in 1978. It was Buick’s entry into NASCAR for the early 80s and its success on track allowed Buick to offer a Grand National version for road use. The 1986-1987 Grand National is a sought after car – as they look quite aggressive. Slotted above the Grand National, the GNX was a 1987-model-year-only bad ass machine.

A GNX started as a Grand National and then it was sent to McLaren Performance Technologies/ASC to be turned into a monster. The engine is a turbocharged 4.1-liter V-6 underrated by the factory at 245 horsepower. Performance is fantastic, with a 0-60 time of less than five seconds.

Only 547 GNXs were built and you could only get them in black. There are many low-mileage examples out there as apparently quite a number of people stashed them away after buying them. Few, if any, have fewer miles than this one as it has only 45 miles on the odometer. Low miles GNXs have been known to crack the $100,000 barrier. This one certainly ought to. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $97,500.

Regal Underslung

1911 Regal Model N Underslung

Offered by H&H Auctions | Duxford, U.K. | October 8, 2014

Photo - H&H Auctions

Photo – H&H Auctions

Underslung is a word most commonly associated with the American Motor Car Company. The term denotes a chassis design that was a novel idea at the time: hang the chassis below the axles. It provides for a sportier ride from a lower center of gravity. But American wasn’t the only company to take advantage of this. For example, there was also the Regal Motor Car Company. Despite its, um, regal, name, the cars were actually produced in Detroit.

Founded in 1907, the company introduced its Underslung model in 1910. The Model N was the base model in 1911 and it uses a 20 horsepower straight-four. It was only offered in two-passenger Runabout form. Two larger models were also sold. The Model N would stick around through 1914 and Regal would close its doors in 1918 due to material shortages during the Great War.

This car shows nice and is a, perhaps, more interesting alternative to the seemingly more common American Underslung. And at a much easier entry point, price-wise. This one will set you back between $40,500-$48,500. Click here for more info and here for the rest of H&H’s lineup.

Update: Sold about $39,477.