1908 Columbia Electric

1908 Columbia Mark LXX Victoria Phaeton

Offered by Bonhams | Chichester, U.K. | April 7, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

There were a few Columbia-branded automobiles in the early days of motoring, including this car made by the Columbia Automobile Company of Hartford, Connecticut. Columbia was actually founded by Albert Pope, who built a number of other cars. They offered electric and gasoline-powered cars from 1903 through 1911, with a smattering of both available from 1897 and gasonline-only cars until 1913.

This 1908 model was wildly outdated by 1908 standards, carrying a body more appropriate for something from 1901. The Mark LXX Victoria Phaeton body was one of at least four body styles offered on Columbia’s electric motor-powered chassis in 1908.

Costing $1,600 when new, this car currently carries a pre-sale estimate of $39,000-$65,000. It’s a pretty rare example – and it sports white tires, which is always a plus. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $76,661.

1904 Columbia

1904 Columbia Mark XLIII Two-Cylinder Rear-Entrance Tonneau

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | October 30, 2015

Photo - Bonhams

Photo – Bonhams

Although many car companies bore his name, Columbia did not bear the name of Albert Pope, who first began building electric automobiles under the Columbia name in 1897. Gasoline-powered cars followed in 1899. Pope’s Columbia merged with the Electric Vehicle Company to form the Columbia Automobile Company in 1899 as well.

The 1904 Mark XLIII was the only two-cylinder car offered by the company that year and it could only be had in 2.9-liter 12/14 horsepower, four-passenger rear-entrance tonneau form. A four-cylinder car was also offered alongside no less than 35 electric variants. Their range was huge – I’m not sure any other American manufacturer was offering this many different cars in 1904. In 1911, the trend had reversed and gasoline was the dominant power source. That year, the company became part of the United States Motor Company, which failed in 1912, taking Columbia with it.

This car was restored in the 1960s and has been owned by the current owner since 2004. It’s very nice. Surviving early Columbias are mostly electrics, which makes this car quite rare. It should bring between $140,000-$170,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $121,950.

September Results I

Before we get to some September auction results, there was one more sale from late August I’d like to cover. It was Silverstone’s CarFest South sale and the top sale was this 1952 Bentley Mk VI Special for $82,520. It might look like a Volkswagen Bugatti replica kit car, but it’s a Bentley. You can check out full results here.

1952 Bentley Mk VI Special

Next up, Bonhams’ Beaulieu sale. The top sale there was this 1926 Sunbeam 3-Litre Super Sports Twin Cam Tourer for $246,605.

1926 Sunbeam 3-Litre Super Sports Twin Cam Tourer

Our featured Chicago Motor Buggy failed to sell. Interesting cars were topped off by this 1913 De Dion-Bouton Type DX Touring. It’s a car I wanted to feature but didn’t get to it. It sold for an attainable $24,185.

1913 De Dion-Bouton Type DX Touring

Our other three feature cars all sold. The Healey Duncan brought $59,119. The Alldays & Onions Tonneau sold for $68,077. And the sole surviving road-going Aster sold for $39,413. Other interesting cars included this 1916 Rauch & Lang Model BX6 Electric Brougham. It sold for $33,143.

1916 Rauch & Lang Model BX6 Electric Brougham

And finally, from the weird category, this 1971 SAVIEM TP3L39 4×4 Gun Bus. I think it’s a hunting car, but I really don’t know. Anyway, it was cheap, bringing only $1,254. Check out full results here.

1971 SAVIEM TP3L39 4x4 Gun Bus

The next auction that this post will cover was Auctions America’s Auburn Fall sale. Top sale was our featured Duesenberg Murphy Convertible Coupe for $1,540,000. Interesting cars included this 1950 Sunbeam-Talbot Mk I Convertible. It sold for $21,450.

1950 Sunbeam-Talbot Mk I Convertible

And how about this 1982 Freeway II? You don’t see these everyday. It sold for $5,225.

1982 Freeway II

Annoyingly, I somehow neglected to feature this 1919 Columbia Six Five-Passenger Touring. This happens every time Auctions America has a huge sale. Something is always overlooked because the catalog is too huge and hard to sort through. This one sold for $11,550.

1919 Columbia Six Five-Passenger Touring

A previously featured Duesenberg Sport Sedan sold at this sale for $962,500 – about $150,000 more than when it sold a year ago. Another Duesenberg, our featured Dual-Cowl Phaeton, sold for $858,000. Our featured Flxible Starliner bus failed to sell. Interestingly, there are about 10 Abbott-Detroit models known to exist. Two of them were in this sale. This 1917 Speedster sold for $19,800. Check out full results here.

1917 Abbott-Detroit Speedster

One more set of highlights: Mecum’s Dallas sale. Our featured Checker Aerobus failed to sell. Top sale was this 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 Convertible that happened to be the 1967 NHRA/A Sports Champion. It sold for a ludicrous $3,200,000.

1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 Convertible

Our featured Chevelle Z16 brought $200,000. A previously-featured Duesenberg failed to sell at this sale. Check out full results here.

Columbia Highwheeler

1899 Columbia Motor Buggy

Offered by Bonhams | Oxford, U.K. | June 15, 2013

1899 Columbia Highwheeler

I’ll start by saying that this is listed as a “circa 1899” so I’m just going with 1899. The Columbia Automobile Company was founded as a joint venture between the Pope Manufacturing Company and the Electric Vehicle Company in 1899. They offered electric and gasoline powered cars. In 1904, Columbia offered 37 different electric cars and two gas-powered ones. By 1911, there were only two electrics while gasoline cars offered had risen to 10.

In 1911, Columbia came under the control of the United States Motor Company – one of the first major “automotive conglomerates.” It over-expanded and failed in 1912, taking Columbia, one of America’s first manufacturers, down with it.

This car is possibly from the launch-year of manufacture. It is powered by a 616cc two-stroke vertical twin-cylinder. It hasn’t run since 1986 but it’s still early and interesting. There aren’t many of them left and this is the only one in the U.K. It should sell for between $23,000-$27,000. Click here for more info and here for more from Bonhams’ Banbury Run sale.

Update: Sold $17,966.

RM Auctions – Amelia Island Highlights

RM Auctions’ recent sale in Amelia Island, Florida sold some outstanding cars, among them the 1929 Cord L-29 Special Coupe that we featured on this site. Far and away the most attractive Cord I’ve ever seen, it was the top sale at $2,420,000. Other million dollar sales included a 1956 Ferrari 250 GT Coupe Speciale by Pinin Farina that sold for $1,430,000.

This 1965 Aston Martin DB5 Vantage convertible sold for $1,210,000. Bringing the same price was a 1972 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Spyder (below the picture of the DB5).

Another million dollar Ferrari was this 1967 275 GTB/4 Berlinetta that sold for $1,100,000.

A little more exotic was the 1930 Bugatti Type 46 Superprofile Coupe which has “recreation” coachwork. It was originally a sedan but the body was replaced with a “faithful recreation” of a famous Bugatti design. The real one would have brought more, but this car was no slouch at $1,017,500.

The first car under $1 million was the 1937 Squire Drophead Coupe that we featured. It brought $990,000. The hauntingly beautiful Hispano-Suiza Double Berline did not sell. There was, however, another Hispano-Suiza – this a 1918 Type 32 Collapsible Brougham by Baltasar Fioly-CIA that sold for $335,500.

The early Model J Duesenberg from this sale that we featured sold for $803,000. Other interesting sales include this 1956 Porsche 356A Carrera GS Coupe that sold for $288,750.

RM is still in the process of parting out the John O’Quinn collection and from that collection came this 1908 Columbia Electric Mark LXX Victoria Phaeton that sold for $66,000.

Another early car was the 1921 Napier T75 Speedster with room for four people – and not much else:

It sold for $79,750. Our final feature car was one of the more affordable cars sold (the second lowest selling price for an automobile at the auction), the Rovin D4 sold for $27,500 – a little price for a little car.

And finally, one car that really stood out was the 1958 DKW Universal Kombi Wagon, which is a type of car that you usually don’t see at American auctions. There are a multitude of interesting cars from all over the world and they tend to not pop up at auctions stateside – or even auctions held in Europe by North American auction houses. There are so many Packards and Porsches that sell at auctions like this, and not nearly enough cars from companies like DKW, or (name just about any European or Asian manufacturer). Now, I understand that they aren’t quite as collectible (money talks, after all) and that not many were imported. But they definitely stand out (in a very good way) when they do show up. This one brought $60,500.

For complete results, click here.