September 2018 Auction Highlights

We’re picking up with Worldwide Auctioneers in Auburn, Indiana, where the Ford GT Prototype we featured was the top sale at $467,500. The other two prototypes we featured both sold at no reserve with the Ford Ghia bringing $1,650 and the Seagrave $11,000. Most Interesting goes to this 2014 WaterCar Panther that sold for $88,000.

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

A previously-featured Ford Thunderbird Concept Car sold here for $25,300, a long way from its original asking price. More results can be found here.

We move on to RM Sotheby’s in London. A low sell-through rate saw two of our feature cars, the Maserati Barchetta and De Tomaso Guara, fail to sell. The top sale was $2,550,296 paid for this 2003 Ferrari Enzo.

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The Sbarro Espera sold for $10,401. Complete results can be found here.

Next up is Brightwells’ Modern Classics sale. We didn’t get to feature anything, but this 2001 Land Rover Defender 90 Tomb Raider Edition was the top sale at $18,477. Click here for more results.

Photo – Brightwells

Bonhams held their Goodwood Revival sale in September. The Bristol 404 Coupe we featured failed to sell (as did the rest of an interesting collection of Bristols), but the Jaguar XJR-11 brought big money: $1,542,582. The biggest money of the whole day was for this 1964 Shelby Cobra 289 Competition at $1,760,176

Photo – Bonhams

The Rolls-Royce State Landaulette failed to sell, otherwise it probably would’ve taken top sale honors. Click here for more results.

The top seller at Mecum’s Louisville sale was this 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon that sold for $132,000. All results from this sale can be found here.

Photo – Mecum

August 2018 Auction Highlights, Pt. II

Picking up in Monterey with Mecum, we have three Duesenbergs, two of which sold. J-262 brought $1,155,000 and the other two were previously-featured cars. J-386 brought $3,850,000 (which turned out to be the overall top seller) and J-255 failed to sell. Excitingly, Alexander Rossi’s Indy 500-winning car sold for $1,127,500. On a related note, Most Interesting goes to this 1957 Kurtis Kraft 500G “Bardahl Special” that sold for $258,500.

Photo – Mecum

The Alpine Edition Diablo brought $253,000. Cars that failed to meet their reserve included the Lamborghini Murcielago, Ferrari F12tdf, the Sang Noir Veyron, Lamborghini Centenario, Porsche 550A, and a previously-featured Locomobile, and Porsche GT3.

We move on now to Russo & Steele in Monterey where they sold John Cena’s 2017 Ford GT for $1,540,000.

Photo – Russo & Steele

The GSM Dart that we featured from their Newport Beach sale (and failed to sell there) also failed to sell here. Click here for more results.

Finally from Monterey we have Worldwide Auctioneers. The top sale was $1,320,000 for the Duesenberg Convertible Sedan we featured. The Tourster brought $775,500. Most Interesting goes to this 1916 Locomobile Model 38 Collapsible Cabriolet that sold for $473,000. Click here for final results.

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Off to the fun that is Auburn, Indiana, in the fall. RM Sotheby’s is where we’ll start and top money went to this 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster for $852,500. The Duesenberg we featured wasn’t far behind, selling for $737,000.

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Going through the results of this sale every year makes me sick to my stomach. This year there were at least a dozen cars that are things I would love to have (and can actually afford!) and failed to purchase because I didn’t make the trip to Auburn. Such deals would’ve included the Maxwell we featured that brought just $13,200. Similarly, the 1920 Buick went for $14,300, the Cole $28,600, and the White $29,700. A previously-featured Terraplane failed to sell and complete results can be found here.

Held the same weekend as the previous sale, Bonhams had an auction across the pond in Beaulieu. The top reported sale here (there was a pre-war Bentley that they aren’t reporting the sale price on) was $283,001 paid for this 1935 AC 2-Litre 16/80HP Competition ‘Slab-Tank’ Sports.

Photo – Bonhams

Among our feature cars, a previously-featured Marendaz led the way at $111,710. Four of the five old cars we featured sold, the exception being the Paige-Detroit. The Corre brought the biggest money at $40,215. The Phoenix blew past its estimate, selling for $32,768, the Reo sold for $23,831, and the Alldays & Onions brought $33,513. Click here for more from Bonhams.

Three Prototypes

Three Prototypes

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Auburn, Indiana | September 1, 2018


2004 Ford GT Confirmation Prototype CP4

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

We’ve featured prototypes of the original Ford GT40, but here’s one of what we’ll call the “second coming” of the GT. The original concept car for this model debuted in 2002 and it’s thought that Ford built nine “confirmation prototypes” of which this is CP4, or vehicle #00007. Its purpose was to be the test bed for ride, steering, handling, and climate control systems.

All black, it was the first GT to hit 200 mph. It’s powered by a 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 making 550 horsepower. It joined the collection it is being sold from in 2012 and it is street legal. It’s the only “CP car” from the GT program that is road-registered and not governed to 15 mph. It’s thought that only four GT prototypes remain and this one is selling at no reserve. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $467,500.


1997 Ford Ghia Vivace Concept

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Well here’s a weird one. It looks like the love child of a Ford Ka and a last-gen Mercury Cougar (it’s actually based on a Mondeo platform aka the Ford Contour). It’s honestly pretty crazy this car still exists at all. It’s just a rolling concept car – there’s no engine, no interior. It’s just a two-door coupe body with some wheels on a chassis.

Ford and Ghia teamed up for two concept cars in 1997 just to explore new shapes and using aluminium space-frame construction. The body is fiberglass, the wheels don’t steer, and the doors don’t even open. It’s like having a rolling brick. Not much to do with it other than look at it. But hey, at the same time, you’re going to be the only person who has one. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $1,650.


1960 Seagrave Prototype

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

In 1960, the Seagrave Fire Apparatus, the longest-running producer of fire apparatus in the United States dating back to 1881, decided they wanted to build passenger cars. But not just normal American passenger cars, but economy cars. This in 1960, when American automobiles were perhaps approaching their largest.

This two-door hardtop is much smaller than the photo above makes it look and it weighed in at only 1,700 pounds. Seagrave managed to build three prototypes (two in fiberglass, one in aluminium), and this fiberglass example was powered by a 2.7-liter Continental straight-four engine capable of 65 horsepower. It was pulled out of a barn in Michigan in 2013 and is restoration ready. It’s one of the most interesting cars for sale in Auburn this year. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $11,000.

Oldsmobile Defender Speedster

1912 Oldsmobile Defender Speedster

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Auburn, Indiana | September 1, 2018

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Oldsmobile became part of General Motors in 1908 and cars like this make it seem like the General left Olds alone for the first few years of their relationship. This does not look like a General Motors product, yet by 1913, Oldsmobile cars started to look more or less like everything else on the market. This Defender Speedster looks expensive and high-quality, not something from a company consumed with mass production.

The 1912 Oldsmobile lineup consisted of this, the “small” Defender powered by a 35 horsepower, 4.4-liter straight-four, the mid-sized four-cylinder Autocrat, and the gargantuan Limited six. Open-top Defenders went for $3,000 in 1912, a pretty sizeable amount in its day.

This well-restored car has been in the same collection for the last 12 years. It’s a rare model (only available in 1912 and 1913) seldom seen today. A great example of what Oldsmobile once stood for, it should bring decent money in Auburn. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Duesenberg JN-575

1936 Duesenberg Model JN LWB Tourster

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Pacific Grove, California | August 23, 2018

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Here’s yet another Duesenberg on offer during the week of car activities in and around Monterey. What this is is a “JN” – a term never used by Duesenberg themselves. The Model J was introduced in 1929. It was expensive. Obviously, that didn’t go so well once the Depression set in and Duesenberg had surplus chassis lying around for years. So in 1935 they decided to freshen the look a little bit. They put on smaller wheels, lowered the body, and fitted different fenders, taillights, and trim. Every one had Rollston coachwork.

This one does not have Rollston coachwork any longer. It still features the same 265 horsepower, 6.9-liter straight-eight under the hood that all of the other Model Js started with. But the body is different. And here’s why: when it was sold in 1969, it’s new owner, commissioned a restoration. The body was separated from the chassis and the building the Rollston body was stored in burned down.

In the early 1970s, this Derham-style Tourster was constructed on the original chassis with the original engine and mechanicals intact. Since that restoration and re-body, the car has been maintained but never again restored. It shows well and is one of 10 Model JNs built by the factory. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $775,500.

July 2018 Auction Highlights

Our July auction highlights begin with Bonhams sale at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. We featured two Brough Superior road cars that both sold, with the 3½-Litre Saloon bringing $42,367 and the one-off V-12 $68,091. The overall top seller was this 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato for a whopping $13,264,951. The “regular” DB4GT we featured failed to sell.

Photo – Bonhams

The Marendaz Special also failed to meet its reserve. The other two cars we featured both turned out to be million dollar sales with the Blower Bentley bringing $2,654,569 and the Bugatti Super Sport hammering sold for slightly more at $2,691,410. Click here for complete results.

Osenat held a sale of a private collection and this 1963 Citroen ID 19 Cabriolet was the top sale at $62,172. Click here for more results.

Photo – Osenat

On to H&H Classics’ Pavilion Gardens sale where the Bond Equipe we featured was no match for the top sale, selling for $4,577. That top sale? $98,938 paid for a dusty 1962 Jaguar E-Type Series I 3.8 Coupe.

Photo – H&H Classics

The Beauford and McLaughlin both failed to sell. You can find more results here.

Now it’s time for Silverstone Auctions’ Silverstone Classic Race Car Sale. The top sale, which was one of just a handful of cars to find new owners, was this 1964 Ford Lotus Cortina Mk I for $73,884. Click here for complete results.

Photo – Silverstone Auctions

And finally, into August, Worldwide Auctioneers liquidated Hostetler’s Hudson Auto Museum in Shipshewana, Indiana. The top sale was the 1952 “Fabulous Hudson Hornet” NASCAR race car that sold for $1,265,000. The next big-dollar feature car was the Hudson Town Car. It brought $313,500. We’ll award Most Interesting to this 1936 Terraplane Series 61 Panel Delivery that sold for $115,500.

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

The Dover Mail Truck achieved $55,000 and the Essex Touring Car brought $26,400. More results can be found here.

Duesenberg J-475

1931 Duesenberg Model J SWB Sport Convertible Sedan by Derham

Offered by Worldwide Auctioneers | Pacific Grove, California | August 23, 2018

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

I’ve said many times before that the Model J is one of the best cars ever built. Want proof? Look at auction catalogs surrounding big auction weekends (like Monterey/Pebble Beach) and what is the one, classic American car that every auction house has? A Model J. They don’t all have Pierce-Arrows, they don’t all have Cadillac V-16s. But they all have a Model J. Or two. This year Worldwide Auctioneers has two. Gooding & Company has two. Mecum has two. They all come out of the woodwork this time of year.

This Model J has engine number 475 and that engine is a 6.9-liter straight-eight developing a mighty 265 horsepower. It’s a four-door Convertible Sedan but it’s also on the “short” Model J wheelbase (still a massive 11, almost 12, feet). Derham built five examples of their Sport Convertible Sedan, and this is one of three that remain.

This car has known ownership history from new and the current owner acquired J-475 in 1974 as what was essentially a project car. It was restored during the mid-1980s and has been on museum duty for the last two years. It’s been serviced and freshened since and can now be yours. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,320,000.

Hudson Town Car

1928 Hudson Model O Town Car by Murphy

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

Photo – Silverstone Auctions

Here’s a fancy Hudson from the Hostetler Hudson Auto Museum in Shipshewana, Indiana. The Model O was produced by Hudson in 1927 and 1928. They offered five body styles from the factory, but the car you see here is a one-off coachbuilt Town Car by the Walter M. Murphy Company of Pasadena, California.

It is powered by a 4.7-liter straight-six that makes 92 horsepower. It might seem unusual to have custom coachwork affixed to a six-cylinder Hudson chassis, but the original owners were wealthy Columbus, Ohio, couple. And the Mrs. in that family had a brother who worked for Hudson. So you can probably imagine how this car came to be.

As noted in the catalog, this car is titled as a 1928 model, but the chassis tag makes it pretty clear it was actually built in 1927. It is thought that the completion of the body likely occurred in 1928. Dubbed the most expensive Hudson ever built – at the princely price of $13,500 in 1928 – this will likely be one of the bigger dollar cars at this sale. You can see more about this sale here and more about this particular Hudson here.

Update: Sold $313,500.

First Year Essex

1919 Essex Series A Touring

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

Photo – Worldwide Auctioneers

Essex was a brand of automobile founded by Hudson as a small, affordable car aimed at the lower end of the market. The first cars went on sale in 1919 and this example is from that first year of production.

The Series A became the Series 5-A, 6-A, and 7-A in 1920, making it, in name, a one-year only model. Three body styles were available: a four-door sedan, two-door roadster, or this, the five-passenger, four-door touring car. The engine is a 55 horsepower, 2.9-liter straight-four. With it’s low price, middle-of-the-road looks, and big power, there’s an argument to be made that the Essex was the original sleeper. Top speed was about 60 mph.

With a $1,395 as-new price, this touring car was a good start for a company that would produce cars through 1932. The restoration is older but the light yellow and silver paint are a good combo with those white wall tires. It’s been part of this Hudson museum since 2000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $26,400.

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.

Update: Sold $1,265,000.