Offered by Bonhams | Cheserex, Switzerland | June 20, 2021
Benetton Formula arrived on the grid in 1986, taking over the Toleman team. They later gave Michael Schumacher his first two titles before being purchased by Renault in 2000. The B193 was their car for the 1993 season, and it was updated to B193B spec beginning at the third race of the season at Donington Park.
The cars were powered by a 3.5-liter Ford V8 that made about 700 horsepower. Unfortunately, this chassis (#02) has been converted to show car spec, so it is currently engineless. It started the season as a spare car before being used for testing. Its actual competition history consists of:
1993 German Grand Prix – 5th (with Riccardo Patrese)
1993 Hungarian Grand Prix – 2nd (with Patrese)
1993 Belgian Grand Prix – 6th (with Patrese)
1993 Italian Grand Prix – 5th (with Patrese)
1993 Portuguese Grand Prix – 16th, DNF (with Patrese)
Not too shabby. The car has been refinished in a later livery (it would’ve had a yellow and green Camel livery in ’93). At any rate, it’s a pure roller. Yet, it is still expected to bring between $89,000-$130,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Phoenix, Arizona | January 22, 2021
If last week’s Isdera wasn’t crazy enough, here comes RM Sotheby’s yet again with another supercar score. A Cizeta V16T. The car was developed by former Lamborghini engineer Claudio Zampolli with financial backing from 80s music composer Giorgio Moroder, who left the project after the first prototype was built (it was called the Cizeta-Moroder up to that point).
The design itself was penned by Marcello Gandini, who, shockingly, also worked on the Lamborghini Diablo. Power is from a 6.0-liter V16 that was essentially two Lamborghini Urraco V8s squeezed together in a single block. Output was rated at 540 horsepower.
RM reports that just nine examples were produced before production ceased in the mid-1990s. Two cars have been built since, and word is that Zampolli will still build you one if you want it.
This car is one of three that was ordered by the Brunei Royal Family, although it was never delivered and sat in a Singapore Ferrari dealer’s storage facility until the current owner bought it in 2020. It has a little over 600 original miles. The other two Brunei Cizetas were converted to use Lambo V12s, and one of those is apparently a disassembled project car.
This is not a car that comes up for public sale often, so it will be interesting to see what it sells for. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Paris, France | Sometime in 2021
Well here we go. Two years ago, Historics auctioned a Lister Storm road car and I said “now if you could just snag an Isdera Commendatore” you’d win my heart. Well, RM Sotheby’s is doing it. The one and only Commendatore 112i is going under the hammer in Paris next year.
Isdera was founded by Eberhard Schulz in Germany in 1982. The company’s biggest success on the production car front was the Imperator 108i, which was a production version of the Mercedes-Benz CW311 concept car (which was designed by Schulz). Thirty were built between 1984 and 1993. Apparently, Isdera has produced 70 cars since 1993, but nobody really knows what they are.
The Commendatore 112i launched as a concept car at the 1993 Frankfurt Motor Show. It was named for Enzo Ferrari and was originally fitted with a 6.0-liter Mercedes-Benz V12 capable of 408 horsepower. A Ruf six-speed manual transaxle was fitted, and the car could do 211 mph.
The body is fiberglass over a spaceframe chassis. Production never materialized, and only this prototype was built. It reappeared in 1999 under the care of a Swiss businessman who updated it to the name “Silver Arrow.” It was offered for sale a few times in the ensuing years, but Isdera managed to reacquire it in 2016. It was then restored back to 1993 specification, including it’s awesome periscope mirror.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Online | July 23-30, 2020
It’s always fun when a manufacturer rolls out an unnecessary, limited-edition specialty car. Think of things like the Lancia Hyena, the Alfa SZ/RZ, and even the Chevy SSR (I like them, leave me alone). They just make life more interesting.
The Alfa Romeo SZ, or Sprint Zagato, was built between 1989 and 1991. It was a hardtop coupe and 1,036 were built. The RZ, or Roadster Zagato, was offered from 1992 through 1994 and only 278 were built. It’s boxy, distinctive, and the suspension is based on the Alfa 75 IMSA car. It is apparently quite the driver’s car.
Power is from a 3.0-liter V6 rated at 207 horsepower. The roadster could hit 60 in 7.5 seconds, which doesn’t sound all that quick, but hey, it’s only got 207 horsepower. It’s a momentum machine, capable of great gobs of grip. This example is a rare sight in the U.S. and will sell at no reserve. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
This is the kind of weird European cottage industry stuff I expect to see in a Monegasque auction. Venturi, which originally produced cars in France, is now based in Monaco. Their heyday was the early 1990s, and they produced a dizzying array of models considering the company wasn’t around for all that long.
The Atlantique was a fiberglass-bodied series of cars featuring a mid-engined, rear-wheel-drive layout. There were turbo and naturally aspirated versions, both with a 3.0-liter V6. But prior to that car’s introduction in 1994, there was the Coupe 260 Atlantique, which wasn’t technically part of the “Atlantique” line. It went on sale in 1991, and just 25 examples were produced through 1993.
The car was based on the 260 APC, a design that dated to the 1980s, and is powered by a 2.8-liter V6 that made 260 horsepower. It was lighter than the APC, and all were finished in this lovely shade of blue. This example was the final one built, and it is expected to fetch between $56,000-$78,000. Click here for more info, and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Essen, Germany | March 26-27, 2020
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.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Phoenix, Arizona | January 17, 2019
A week ago we featured the coupe version of this car, the Vector Avtech WX-3. This is the topless form, the WX-3R Roadster. Nothing says over-the-top supercar quite like a rear-engined V-12 roadster with no roof, scissor doors, and headrests that appear to be taller than the ridiculously-raked windshield.
This car debuted alongside the coupe at Geneva in 1993 and is powered by a twin-turbo 6.0-liter V8 and a GM automatic transmission that could take this thing to over 200 mph. Series production never occurred, and this remains a one-off, fantastically 90s, supercar prototype. I literally had a poster of this car on my bedroom wall as a kid.
This is the first time this car has ever been for sale publicly, as it is being sold from company founder Jerry Wiegert‘s personal collection. It should bring between $450,000-$550,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Phoenix, Arizona | January 17, 2019
If my schoolgirl-like giddiness for this car becomes too distracting in the text that follows, please just bear with me. I love Vectors. They are outrageous. The company traces its roots back to the 1970s when founder Gerald Wiegert showed his first prototype, the W2, in 1978. The W8 was their first production car in 1989.
The Avtech WX-3 debuted in 1992 and was to go into production with three engine options. This, the coupe version (just wait until next week), is finished in a beautiful shade of Brilliant Aquamarine, though it was originally silver.
Wiegert lost control of the company shortly after this car debuted and the new owners, while barred from using this design, more or less did anyway with the very similar-looking M12 that used Lamborghini engines. This car is powered by a twin-turbocharged 7.0-liter V8 putting out 1,000 horsepower.
This is the only car like it in the world, and Wiegert has never parted with it, until now. It’s so over-the-top in a wonderfully 90s kind of way. I just love these cars. The details are just so extreme, to wit: its shark-like appearance and the fact that the fuel cap looks like it was ripped right off of a Cessna. It is expected to bring between $450,000-$550,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | December 1, 2018
Photo – Bonhams
For some reason, the Jaguar XJ220 is a car that people don’t love. I guess because it has a V6 or something, people think it’s an “inferior” supercar. But it’s still a supercar. It was the fastest car in the world upon its introduction. And, as you can see, it has racing heritage.
That’s right, for a brief period, Jaguar tracked these monsters with a factory effort. Well, factory in that the whole thing was run by Tom Walkinshaw Racing. But it was funded by Jag. Just four lightweight XJ220 competition cars were built. The racing history for this chassis includes:
1993 24 Hours of Le Mans – 1st in class (with John Nielsen, David Brabham, and David Coulthard)
Well, that’s technically only partially correct. While they won their class, they were disqualified later on because of some weird appeal-filing timing mishap. A very bureaucratic disqualification.
The race-trim version of this car is powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 tuned to 500 horsepower, which is actually less than the road car, but with all of the lightweight components installed, it was probably much quicker.
After staying in the TWR collection for a while, this car was sold to the Sultan of Brunei before coming back to the U.K. in 1999. It can now be yours for between $2,900,0000-$3,600,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Bonhams | Padua, Italy | October 27, 2018
Photo – Bonhams
The Alfa Romeo 155 was Alfa’s “compact executive car” built between 1992 and 1998. In some trims, this was a downright good-looking car (and still is). They used it in DTM and various touring car series throughout Europe. After some victory in ’92, Alfa decided to build a road-going series of 155 GTA Stradale cars like Mercedes and BMW had been doing for years.
Built by Abarth, the cars were to use a turbocharged 2.0-liter straight-four capable of 190 horsepower. It’s got 4-wheel-drive and an aero kit was added to make it appear boxier and more DTM-like. Company executives wanted a V6, and then they realized how expensive it would be to actually produce a run of these things…
So the project went nowhere. And this was the only example produced. First road-registered in Germany in the late 1990s, the car has accumulated 40k kilometers through a handful of owners. It’s pretty awesome and will cost a serious enthusiast between $210,000-$250,000 to purchase. Click here for more info and here for the rest of Bonhams’ Padua lineup.