Diamond T Tanker

1929 Diamond T Model T4D 1.5-Ton Tanker

Offered by Mecum | Indianapolis, Indiana | May 13, 2022

Photo – Mecum

Diamond T built some beautiful trucks in the 1930s and ’40s. But the company was actually founded by C.A. Tilt in 1905, back when things were more… functional. This is the earliest Diamond T we’ve featured.

At the end of the 1920s, trucks were big, heavy, slow, and purposeful. Styling hadn’t entered the arena yet. This tanker truck is powered by a Hercules 4.1-liter inline-four paired with a four-speed transmission. In thinking about why this truck survived scrap drives during WWII, I’d guess it was used as a water truck on a farm or something where it was relied upon.

This truck was part of the Hays Antique Truck Museum, which Mecum liquidated earlier this year. So why is it back at auction (and with the same pics)? Either it didn’t sell, it got pulled from the catalog at the last second, or the winning bidder flaked. In any event, glad it’s back so we could feature it this time around. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold, Mecum East Moline 2022, $22,000.

Duesenberg J-394

1929 Duesenberg Model J Convertible Victoria by Rollston

Offered by Bonhams | Amelia Island, Florida | March 3, 2022

Photo – Bonhams

Well this is awkward. We’ve already featured a Model J Duesenberg with an engine carrying number J-394. Apparently that J-394 featured a re-stamped engine, making this the actual J-394. Or who knows. All of these old cars are just a pile of parts put together over the last ~100 years.

J-394, of course, is a 265-horsepower, 6.9-liter straight-eight. And it’s fitted to a short-wheelbase Model J, which are not tiny by any means, but the Henry Ford Museum has one very similar to this parked next to a Bugatti Royale and it looks downright tiny.

The Rollston body was originally fitted to this chassis but was previously removed and mounted to a different chassis. The body itself was later restored before being reunited with this chassis in the 1970s. It’s been in the same family for 17 years and now has an estimate of $900,000-$1,200,000. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $1,066,500.

Duesenberg J-142

1929 Duesenberg Model J Convertible Coupe by Murphy

Offered by Mecum | Glendale, California | March 16-19, 2022

Photo – Mecum

Great colors! In the sea of Model Js that have been featured on this site, sometimes it’s something as simple as a great paint job that will set one of them apart. It also doesn’t hurt that this car wears sporty convertible coupe coachwork by Murphy, the most prolific of Model J body constructors. In all, 60 were fitted with this style by Murphy.

The 6.9-liter Lycoming inline-eight developed 265 horsepower when new. No word if this engine is original to this chassis, but honestly who cares. The car is ACD Club certified, and its first owner is known.

This car previously resided in the Blackhawk Collection and the Imperial Palace Collection. It’s also an AACA and CCCA award winner. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $2,365,000.

Lagonda 2-Litre

1929 Lagonda 2-Litre Low-Chassis Tourer

Offered by Bonhams | Chichester, U.K. | September 18, 2021

Photo – Bonhams

Lagonda was acquired by Aston Martin in 1947. But prior to that, the company produced some fairly sporty cars, starting with 1925’s 2-Litre model. A Lagonda won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1935.

The 2-Litre was updated in 1927 and could later be had with a supercharger. Yes, this green tourer looks pretty much just like a period Bentley, but it is in fact a Lagonda. Shockingly, Bonhams has four nearly identical cars all up for auction the same day. It’s powered by a 2.0-liter inline-four that was tweaked in period for racing use.

This particular car is one of the four prepped by Fox & Nicholl for the 1929 endurance racing season. The competition history for this chassis includes:

  • 1929 Brooklands Double 12 – 18th (with Frank King and Howard Wolfe)
  • 1929 24 Hours of Le Mans – 18th, DNF (with Tim Rose-Richard and Brian Lewis)

It’s been part of the same collection since 1960, and it has the highest pre-sale estimate of the four Fox & Nicholl-prepped Lagondas in this sale at $410,000-$550,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Duesenberg J-403

1929 Duesenberg Model J Dual-Cowl Phaeton by Murphy

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monterey, California | August 12-14, 2021

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

There are a lot of Duesenbergs coming out of the woodwork for Monterey this year. This is the third Wednesday in a row we’ve featured one. The dual-cowl phaeton is the best Model J body style, and this is a rare variant of the breed.

Murphy’s designer decided to cut the rear cowl (the folding windshield between the two rows of seats) down the middle, so either side could flip up independently, allowing passengers from either side to enter without having to heave the entire cowl upward. It was dubbed the “butterfly” dual cowl, and only three were built.

Power is, of course, from a 265-horsepower, 6.9-liter inline-eight. This car lacks exterior door handles from the factory and rides on the shorter of the two main Model J wheelbases. This chassis originally had engine J-145 in it, but it was replaced early on with J-403. The body was originally fitted to the car with engine J-336. By the 1950s, the car as you see it had come together.

The most recent restoration was completed in 2009, and the car has been used on several long-distance tours since. You can read more about it here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $3,305,000.

Duesenberg J-225

1929 Duesenberg Model J Convertible Sedan by Murphy

Offered by Mecum | Monterey, California | August 12-14, 2021

Photo – Mecum

The Convertible Sedan produced by the Walter M. Murphy Company of Pasadena, California, seems like one of the most common Duesenberg Model J body styles. But they only actually made 31 of them. Although… I guess that is a lot, considering the limited production of the Model J.

The Model J, of course, is powered by a 6.9-liter Lycoming inline-eight that made 265 horsepower when new. This example was delivered new to the president of Hammermill Paper in Pennsylvania, and it was next owned by a Sears executive. The car was on museum display as early as 1973.

Although the pictures don’t really show it, the car is finished in dark green, and it is excellent. You can read more about this seven-figure car here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $2,365,000.

Antony Bergamot Race Car

1929 Antony Bergamot Race Car

Offered by Aguttes | Neuilly, France | June 20, 2021

Photo – Aguttes

Automobiles Antony was founded by Louis-Auguste Antony and was based in Douai, France, between 1921 and 1932. Antony’s money came from a family cycle-dealing business, and he was an avid racing driver after the turn of the century.

The company’s road cars were not very popular, but they did find some success on the track. This one-off race car features a lowered chassis, front-wheel-only brakes, and a chain-driven rear end. The original engine was changed based on race regulations and rotated between one (or two) Harrisard 350cc two-stroke twins or a 500cc JAP single. It now has a 500cc Triumph twin.

The Bol d’Or is an endurance race that was open to cars in the 1920s, 30s, 40s, and 50s. This car competed there in 1930, 1931, 1932, 1933, 1947, and 1948, usually with Mr. Antony himself (in his 60s by ’48) behind the wheel. It had four class victories among those entries. Antony only built about 60 cars, three of which were pretty competitive race cars that he kept hidden away for long after his death. This one is expected to bring between $42,000-$66,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $49,429.

Duesenberg J-169

1929 Duesenberg Model SJ Convertible Sedan by Murphy

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Online | August 13-15, 2020

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

This short-wheelbase Model J is said to be one of approximately 45 built as a convertible sedan by the Walter M. Murphy Company. It was a popular choice for a Duesenberg body, and it’s easy to see why.

Power is from a 6.9-liter inline-eight that was fitted with a supercharger in the 1960s. The supercharger was an assembled unit, made up of original and reproduction parts. This is not a factory-supercharged car. Had it been, the factory would’ve claimed an output of 320 horsepower.

The history of this chassis is known back to its second owner, and it was acquired by the consignor back in 1990. Stashed away for decades, it would be a welcome sight at most shows. You can read more about it here and see more from this sale here.

Update: Sold $781,000.

Mercedes-Benz SS

1929 Mercedes-Benz SS 27/140/200 Sport Tourer by Fernandez & Darrin

Offered by Artcurial | Paris, France | February 7, 2020

Photo – Artcurial

Before there was the S-Class, there was the S-Series, which started with the Model S, which was a nice, big car introduced by Mercedes-Benz in 1926. This line of cars was responsible for the best Mercedes cars before things like the 540K rolled out.

It was topped by the SS in 1928, as shown here. This car is believed to wear a body from Fernandez and Darrin and was sold new in New York. Three versions of the SS were offered between 1928 and 1934. This is an example of the early, entry-level model, which is powered by a supercharged 7.1-liter straight-six that made 140 horsepower in normal mode and 200 with the supercharger engaged. This power rating was only available through 1930.

Things got even more intense with the SSK, but that’s another story for another day. Only 111 examples of the SS were built, and this example should bring between $6,500,000-$8,750,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Artcurial.

Update: Not sold.

Supercharged Alfa 6C 1750

1929 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Supercharged Super Sport Spider

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | December 7, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

The Alfa 6C 1500 gave way to the 6C 1750 in 1929. Displacement, obviously, increased and the straight-six engine jumped to 1,752cc. Six different series of the 1750 were produced between 1929 and 1933.

Within those six series were an array of different models. The Super Sport, which was available in both supercharged and non-supercharged form, was only available in 1929 as a “Series III” model. For 1930, it became the Gran Sport, all of which carried a supercharger. This Supercharged Super Sport made 85 horsepower when new.

This car carries coachwork from Zagato and it does not appear to have been fully restored. This 6C 1750 Series III Super Sport is one of 112 built and should bring between $1,000,000-$1,600,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.