Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | July 18, 2022
Constructions d’Automobiles Dexter was founded by Auguste Faure as a spinoff of his Lyon-based bicycle company that dated back to the turn of the century. Dexter cars were produced from 1906 through 1909. And right up front, Faure wanted to prove his cars’ worth by taking them racing.
All of the cars he built – which was not many – had big powerful engines, and most of them were competition examples. This particular car is a reconstruction of a period racing car, one of two of its kind built. It’s powered by a 6.5-liter inline-four, with each cylinder in its own block, that was good for 120 horsepower. Most of the company’s other cars made at least 100 horsepower.
Dexters came with four-speed transmissions and dual carburetors in 1906. Uncommon stuff for the day. This chain-driven racing car means business and completely looks the part. It’s got an estimate of $125,000-$155,000. Click here for more info.
Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | March 28, 2022
Fortin-Jourdain is a car that you will not find much information about. It’s not even mentioned in the grandest of automotive encyclopedias. What can be deduced, mainly from the catalog listing, is that Jules Fortin, a Frenchman born in 1856, was an electrician.
He partnered with his son-in-law, Charles Jourdain, to form Fortin-Jourdain. The company sold its first cars in between 1907 and 1909. It’s thought that as few as seven were built, and this is the only known survivor.
Power is from an inline-four sourced from Sultan-Lethimonnier, and the bodywork is sort of a small runabout/convertible with a pickup-y rear end. Hard to tell, as this is the only full-frame angle that Osenat has provided. So you know, bid blind. The pre-sale estimate is $21,000-$27,000. Click here for more info.
Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | March 28, 2022
The Bijou is a small French coupe built by Citroen in England for the British market. It’s actually a 2CV underneath, but the 2CV wasn’t selling well there, so they decided to give it a makeover.
But part of the problem is that it was still a 2CV. The 425cc flat-twin made 12 horsepower. It still had the wonky long-travel suspension. The body is plastic, which kept the weight down (way, or weigh, down). It was actually styled by the same guy who did the Lotus Elite. So you know, sporting cred. But it didn’t work.
Only 209 were built: all right-hand drive. Production also spanned from 1959 through 1964. So they were leaving the factory at quite a leisurely pace. Apparently about 40 are still road-registered in the U.K. This one should fetch between $10,000-$16,000. Click here for more info.
Offered by Osenat | Rhinau, France | January 23, 2022
Here’s another H6B from Hispano-Suiza. This is a very early example of the H6B, which technically debuted for 1922. This car was built in October 1921, and the main differences between the initial H6 and the later B model was essentially a power bump.
Both cars shared the same 6.6-liter inline-six that made 135 horsepower in the H6B. Both had power-assisted aluminum drum brakes on all four wheels. The body here is by little-known coachbuilder Duquesne from Tourcoing, France. The skiff body is attractive with woodwork beginning at the cowl and going rearward. The red running boards and polished hood add a sporting effect.
This car was restored in the 1960s and refurbished as needed thereafter, with a gearbox rebuild being performed in 1992. This rare, fully open H6B now carries an estimate “on request,” meaning it’s probably the biggest dollar car at Osenat’s sale. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | March 29, 2021
Charles-Henri Brasier and Georges Richard produced cars together under the Richard-Brasier marque between 1902 and 1905. Then, Georges Richard went off to found Unic, and Brasier kept going under his own name.
Beginning in 1908, Brasier customers got to mix-n-match to build the car they wanted. They selected a chassis size, engine, and body separately. This example is powered by a 12-horsepower inline-four and features a large double phaeton body.
Brasier cars were expensive, and prior to WWI they built about 1,000 cars a year. They survived the war building aircraft engines, but their fortunes dwindled afterward. 1926 saw a merger, and the company was gone by the early 1930s. This is one of the better examples of Charles-Henri Brasier’s cars that I’ve seen, and it should sell for between $47,000-$70,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Osenat | Fontainebeau, France | December 17, 2020
Panhard’s PL 17 was one of the company’s final passenger cars, and it was introduced in 1959. In 1963, they introduced the Break, or the five-door estate state wagon. Production wrapped in 1965, when the PL 17 was replaced by the two-door-only Panhard 24.
Power is from an 848cc air-cooled flat-twin that developed 50 horsepower, which was routed to the front wheels through a four-speed manual gearbox. The cars were praised for their road holding and fuel economy, but dinged for their gearbox (no first gear synchro) and heavy steering.
The wagon variant is the rarest among PL 17s, with only about 2,500 examples produced. Chances are you’ve never seen one in person. No pre-sale estimate is available, but you can read more about it here and see more from this sale here.
Offered by Osenat | Fontainebleau, France | October 20, 2020
The Islero was a pretty Lamborghini 2+2 that was the successor of the 400GT. It was actually sold alongside the Miura and the Espada (that’s right, they had three models at once in the 60s!). It was only produced for two years. A base trim was offered, as was an up-rated “S” model like the one shown above.
The S shared the same 3.9-liter V12 as the base car, but power was increased a bit, from 325 horsepower to 350. That boosted top speed to 161 mph, and 60 arrived in 6.2 seconds. The last one of these I saw in person was finished in light blue, and it was very striking in person.
Just 100 examples of the Islero S were built, making them just slightly rarer than the base car. This example was first registered in Venice, of all places, and it was restored about 15 years ago. It should sell for between $300,000-$350,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Well, the world is a mess, and most auction houses have postponed or canceled more or less every scheduled auction that was scheduled to be held anytime in late March through… well I don’t even know yet. It’s mid-April as I begin typing this post, and the calendar has more or less cleared out through May and into June (Edit: it took until June to wrap this up).
But! There are still some results to cover, beginning with H&H Auctioneers’ late March sale, which was pretty much the last one to get in before everything went haywire. The top seller was this 1938 Lagonda LG6 Drophead Coupe that brought roughly $237,510 (this was the day that the markets tanked, so the exchange rate was at its lowest in a long time).
The Jensen CV8 we featured brought $46,980, and complete results are available here.
RM Sotheby’s shifted their entire Palm Beach sale to online-only, and the top sale ended up being this 1996 Porsche 911 GT2 for $891,000.
Osenat was one of the first houses to hold a mid-COVID (“mid” because it ain’t over yet) sale. The Panhard we featured didn’t sell, but the overall top seller was this 1969 Lamborghini Miura P400 S that sold for $950,518. Click here for additional results.
Business can be a fickle thing. Panhard et Levassor was one of the first automotive giants and is one of the most important car companies from the early days of the industry. Panhard’s post-war fortunes weren’t great. Their later years found them grasping at straws, unable to compete with Renault, Citroen, and Peugeot.
The Dyna Junior was a small sports car introduced in 1952. It borrowed the chassis and drivetrain from the larger Dyna X. It’s a front-wheel-drive little drop-top, and in X86 form it was powered by a 745cc flat-twin rated at 32 horsepower. This was the least-powerful variant built.
But it’s an early car. The factory prototypes were built by a coachbuilder called Di Rosa, who would eventually go out of business after Panhard yanked production duties away from them. The very early Dyna Juniors were built there. Including this one. And it has some unique features not found on other cars, like a unique windshield and trunk.
Only 4,707 examples of the Dyna Junior were built between 1952 and 1956. In 1953, it was Panhard’s biggest-seller, having moved less than 3,000 of them. That’s how far their fortunes had fallen. This seemingly one-off X86 Junior should bring between $21,750-$27,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Next up is Brightwells’ Leominster Classic & Vintage sale. The top sale here was an interesting one. It’s a 2011 Morgan Plus Four SuperSports factory race car and the factory transporter, which is a late-80s/early-90s Ford-based RV. Oh, and the trailer. The whole package cost someone $69,861.
Finally, RM Sotheby’s held a sale in Abu Dhabi at the end of November. If you’re imagining a sale chock full of supercars, well, you’re right. In fact, the Pagani Zonda we featured ended up as the top sale at $6,812,500. Not far behind it was Michael Schumacher’s Ferrari F2002 at $6,643,750. The other feature cars that crossed the million-dollar mark were the Zagato Raptor at $1,086,250, the Koenigsegg Agera at $1,356,250, the Ferrari 126 C2 at $2,143,750, and the Ferrari FXX-K at $4,281,250.