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.

Cunningham Hearse

1929 Cunningham V-8 33286 Hearse

Offered by Auctions America | Auburn, Indiana | May 13, 2017

Photo – Auctions America

Some people think hearses in general are creepy. I don’t. But this one is. It’s that ornate, Victorian-like coachwork that makes it look like it should be driven by a ghost in a tuxedo and a top hat. Cunningham built attractive passenger cars from 1911 through 1929. From 1929 through 1936, they concentrated on hearses, ambulances and other car-based commercial vehicles (something they’d been building since practically day one).

This car is powered by a 45 horsepower, 7.2-liter V-8. That’s an embarrassing amount of power from such a big engine, considering Duesenberg’s eight-cylinder engine from 1929 was making 265 horses. But who cares, really, because as heavy as this car looks, it’s enough power to cruise at parade speed, which is really the only thing you’re going to do with it unless you own a funeral home and a time machine.

This car comes from a Detroit-area funeral home and before that it was used in Chicago. The wooden carvings on the side are very intricate. It’s an interesting enough automobile that it was on display for a time at the Henry Ford Museum. Only 5,600 Cunninghams were produced over 30 years – so good luck finding another one like this. It should bring between $80,000-$100,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $137,500.