Lil Red Express

1979 Dodge Lil Red Express

Offered by Mecum | Indianapolis, Indiana | July 10-18, 2020

Photo – Mecum

The D-Series Dodge pickup was built in three generations from 1960 through 1980 before being replaced by the Ram (although some Rams still used the “D” nomenclature through the early 1990s). The Lil Red Express was an option package on the D150 Adventurer pickup that was available in 1978 and 1979.

Each Lil Red Express came equipped with dual vertical stack exhaust pipes, wood bed trim, and an 8-track cassette of C.W. McCall’s #1 hit “Convoy.” Okay, I made that last part up, but you can obviously tell this was a pickup for serious over-the-road trucker cosplayers. “Lil Red Express” also doubles as a great name for a ginger rapper (you’re welcome).

This truck is powered by a 360ci/5.9-liter V8 that made 180 horsepower new. Dodge offered a number of special option package (or “lifestyle”) pickups during this era, but this is the most famous. Those exhaust stacks were illegal in some states, so you couldn’t get this truck everywhere. Only 2,188 were built in 1978, and 1979 saw 5,118 takers. Check out more about this truck here, and see more from this sale here.

AMC Mighty Mite

1963 AMC M422A1 Mighty Mite

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Elkhart, Indiana | October 23-24, 2020

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

A couple of companies have built Jeeps or Jeep-like vehicles. It started with American Bantam, then there was Willys, Ford, Jeep (of course), and more. American Motors produced the prototype for this tactical truck in 1946, and it was further refined by some of the engineers from the original Bantam Jeep project.

The 1/4-ton “Mighty Mite” was produced for the Marine Corps between 1959 and about 1962. It is powered by a 55 horsepower 1.8-liter V4. It has four-wheel drive and tops out at about 62 mph. This is the “long wheelbase” version, as the M422 variant was six inches shorter.

Just 2,672 examples of the M422A1 were produced. When compared to WWII-era Jeeps, that’s just a tiny, tiny percentage. This well-restored example is going to sell at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Puch 500 GE

1993 Puch 500 GE

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Essen, Germany | March 26-27, 2020

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The civilian version of the Mercedes-Benz Geländeagen was introduced in 1979 and remains in production today looking pretty much the same. Up until 2000, the trucks were sold in Austria (and a few select other European markets) under the Puch brand.

The G-Wagen was updated in 1990, and the first V8-powered variant was introduced in 1993. It was called the 500 GE. Only 446 were produced between 1993 and 1994. Power is from a 5.0-liter V8 good for 237 horsepower. The V8 wouldn’t reappear until 1998. And, of course, MB would drop much larger, more powerful engines in these later on.

Of those 446 500 GEs, only three were Puch-branded, with this being the first. It’s finished in a great color and features a very ostentatious Puch badge on the front grille. Sure, this truck may be a footnote in the world of Mercedes vehicles, but that’s kind of what makes it interesting. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Volkswagen’s WWII Effort

1944 Volkswagen Type 166 Schwimmagen

Offered by Bonhams | Amelia Island, Florida | March 5, 2020

Photo – Bonhams

The Volkswagen project kicked off in 1937 to build Germany a “people’s car.” Well, that plan sort of got derailed with Germany’s other big passion: taking over the world. So Volkswagen got repurposed to build military vehicles. And they produced three different kinds. Two of them are on offer at this sale.

The Schwimmwagen is the most mass-produced amphibious vehicle in history. In all, 14,265 of them were built between 1942 and 1944. They were used by the Germans throughout the war and could obviously be used on land or water. Power is from a 1.1-liter flat-four good for 25 horsepower. The Schwimmwagen even made an appearance in the Gran Turismo video game series. It was not fast.

The whole military history of this car shouldn’t really deter people from having one. They are probably tons of fun. This one was recently restored and is expected to bring between $100,000-$125,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $145,600.


1944 Volkswagen Type 82 Kubelwagen

Offered by Bonhams | Amelia Island, Florida | March 5, 2020

Photo – Bonhams

We said that Volkswagen produced two other military vehicles for Germany during WWII, aside from the Schwimmwagen. This, the Kubelwagen, was another one (there was also a four-wheel-drive version of the Beetle). This is the one the bad guys always drove in WWII video games.

Produced between 1940 and 1945, the Type 82 is powered by a 25 horsepower, 1.1-liter flat-four. Earlier versions had smaller engines. It was the German version of the Jeep. But, unlike the Jeep, this thing is heavily based on Beetle designs and is rear-wheel drive.

That’s right! This thing will go anywhere with just two driven wheels. Part of the trick is that the car is very light, uses portal axles, and has a relatively smooth underside. They built 50,435 examples, and this one has been restored. It should bring between $30,000-$40,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $58,240.

Fordson E83W

1951 Fordson E83W Pickup

Offered by Brightwells | Leominster, U.K. | March 4, 2020

Photo – Brightwells

The Fordson tractor brand was manufactured by various entities of the Ford Motor Company between 1917 and 1964. It was under Ford of Britain’s purview for the last few decades, and in that time, they built a 1/2-ton commercial vehicle called the E83W. It was available as a delivery van, a pickup, and other light-duty body styles.

The truck was available from 1938 through 1957 in the U.K. and was also offered under the Thames commercial brand. It retained its pre-war styling and 10 horsepower, 1.2-liter inline-four for the duration of production. Top speed was about 40 mph.

This tiny pickup has been restored and is now offered with a pre-sale estimate of $9,000-$12,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $11,835.

Fordson Truck

1926 Fordson Prototype

Offered by Mecum | Davenport, Iowa | November 7, 2019

Photo – Mecum

Early Ford trucks were based on the Model T. They usually had a dually rear axle and some other changes, but the relation to the T was pretty obvious. They were even called the TT. The vehicle you see here was the first Ford heavy-duty truck. It’s a two-ton chassis, and it was built under the Fordson brand.

Fordson was a brand of tractors marketed by the Ford Motor Company between 1917 and 1964. The name also appeared on some light commercial vehicles in the U.K. The truck is powered by a Fordson tractor engine and transmission. The way it is packaged makes it looks like it completely lacks an engine, with the radiator mounted behind the front axle.

This was the only example of the Fordson two-ton truck that was actually delivered to a customer. It eventually made its way to the Harrah Collection and has been privately owned since 1983. Mecum has been making a big deal of it, which is the star of the show at this sale. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $90,750.

Range Rover Limo

1994 Land Rover Range Rover LSE Limousine

Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Birmingham, U.K. | November 9, 2019

Photo – Silverstone Auctions

The first-generation Range Rover was in production from 1970 through 1994. An eternity, in other words. This example is from the last year of Range Rover Classic production, and it was purchased new by the Sultan of Brunei, who commissioned Townley Cross Country Vehicles Ltd. to convert it into a limousine for his brother, Prince Jefri.

The conversion cost a lot of money and took nine months to complete. Townley Cross Country Vehicles did a number of these – several hundred perhaps – for wealthy Middle Eastern clients. This thing is tricked out. It has what I’ll call a “red-ass interior” with two seats up front, and three captain’s chairs in the rear, one of which is facing sideways. It also has an entertainment center of sorts with two TVs with VCRs. Break out the VHS tapes!

Power is from a 4.3-liter V8 making 200 horsepower… which probably is not enough grunt to get this huge thing moving all that quickly. It is pretty cool, though, and has fairly low mileage. It is expected to bring between $23,000-$31,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $42,903.

Erskine Panel Delivery

1928 Erskine 51B Panel Truck

Offered by Mecum | Davenport, Iowa | November 7, 2019

Photo – Mecum

Erskine was introduced by Studebaker in 1927 as a low-priced brand and was named for company president Albert Erskine. It lasted through the 1930 model year when Studebaker dumped the idea and absorbed the line into its own.

What Erskine didn’t really do was commercial vehicles. Yet here we are. This is believed to be the only example of the Erskine Panel Truck produced, and it was built in 1928 as part of the Model 51 line, which was powered by a 43 horsepower 2.6-liter inline-six.

The truck was discovered in a warehouse in 1962 and later restored. It’s now being offered as part of Mecum’s “Antique Trucks” day at their massive tractor auction in Iowa. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold, high bid of $19,000.

Monteverdi Sahara

1979 Monteverdi Sahara

Offered by Oldtimer Galerie | Toffen, Switzerland | October 19, 2019

Photo – Oldtimer Galerie

Peter Monteverdi’s Swiss car company produced some wild supercars, some Chrysler-based sedans, and some luxury off-roaders based on the very humble International Scout. Two such SUVs were produced: the Safari and the Sahara. Production began in 1977 and lasted through 1982, when IHC killed off the Scout.

Luxury SUVs were fairly rare in the late 1970s, and the Swiss market was pretty much limited to the Range Rover. Which is why Monteverdi pounced on the opportunity to offer a competitor. The Safari was bodied by Fissore, whereas the cheaper Sahara pretty much just used the Scout’s bodywork as-is.

This restored example is powered by a 5.7-liter IHC V8 good for 165 horsepower. The Sahara didn’t sell as well as the Safari, with as few as 30 examples having been built. This one is expected to bring between $30,000-$35,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Atterbury Truck

1926 Atterbury 5-Ton Truck

Offered by Mecum | Chicago, Illinois | October 24-26, 2019

Photo – Mecum

Autocar has been a player in the heavy truck industry since 1908, and during some of that time, they were building passenger cars. Meanwhile, the Auto-Car Equipment Company was founded in 1904 in Buffalo, New York. When Autocar (of Pennsylvania) got into the truck business in ’08, Auto-Car, of Buffalo, whose sole business was trucks, changed their name to Buffalo.

And in 1910, they reformed again as the Atterbury Motor Car Company. By 1911 they were offering four different capacities of trucks, with the 5-ton example being the largest. This particular truck features a large pickup-style body and is powered by an inline-four engine.

Atterbury introduced new models in 1931, which they continued to produce through 1935 when they closed down. The company never really got huge, selling just 141 trucks in 1929, many to Canada. This one carries a pre-sale estimate of $40,000-$50,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $77,000.