Benz Velo

1896 Benz Velo

Offered by Dragone Auctions | Westport, Connecticut | June 4, 2016

Photo - Dragone Auctions

Photo – Dragone Auctions

This is one of the most important cars of all time. The Benz Patent-Motorwagen is the first automobile. Karl Benz built about 25 of them before altering the design and changing the name. The Benz Velo was the second car he built. Along with the Duryea Motor Wagon, the Velo is regarded as the first production car.

It is powered by a 1.0-liter single-cylinder engine making 1.5 horsepower. Top speed is 15 mph, which would probably be slightly terrifying for modern drivers. This car is listed as well “preserved” with its original body and lamps. That’s remarkable. It’s 120 years old. To put that in perspective… 9/11 was as far in the past when compared to today as the Gunfight at the O.K Corral is to the time when this car was built.

The Velo (which is short for “Velocipede, by the way) was built between 1894-1901. Only 67 were built in 1894, but that jumped up to 134 in 1895. In all, slightly more than 1,200 were built. That’s a low number, but that number stopped growing over 100 years ago. These are historical artifacts – that you can use. This one had one owner from 1922 to 1972, which is kind of crazy. It’s just incredible, all around. No estimate is available, but get ready to outbid museums. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.