Pedroso Roadster

1928 Pedroso Roadster

Offered by Bonhams | Carmel, California | August 13, 2021

Photo – Bonhams

Ivanrey de Soriano and the San Carlos de Pedroso were two Spanish marquises who teamed up to build the Soriano-Pedroso automobile in France between 1919 and 1924. The first cars were produced out of Biarritz, while general production stemmed from Neuilly. Three models were offered over the five-year period, most of which were pretty sporty.

After production wound up, the two men each produced a lone car under their own name (both of which still exist). The Marquis de Pedroso wanted to go to Le Mans, and he designed a sophisticated supercharged 2.0-liter twin-cam straight-eight to power his cars. Two engines were built, one of which is in this car. de Pedroso never made it to Le Mans, but his son would race this car in vintage events in the 1960s on the east coast of the U.S.

Pedroso’s son Jose Luis gifted the car to the Petersen Automotive Museum upon his death, and it’s now offered for sale for the first time in its history. The pre-sale estimate is $100,000-$150,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $296,500.

Cadillac 30 Roadster

1910 Cadillac Model 30 Roadster

Offered by Historics Auctioneers | Slough, U.K. | July 17, 2021

Photo – Historics Auctioneers

Cadillac’s Model 30 was produced from 1909 through 1911. It was their only model those three years and was based on a design stemming from 1906 (although it was called by different names then, including the Model G). The four-cylinder model would continue one essentially unchanged through 1914.

The engine is a 4.2-liter inline-four that was rated at 33 horsepower when new. In 1909 and early 1910, you could only get the 30 as an open car. Limousines and coupes didn’t come until mid-1910. Two roadsters were available at $1,600 each. This is the two-seat roadster.

It was restored over time, and the body is said to have been fitted about 100 years ago. So I guess that makes it close enough to being “original.” It is expected to fetch between $37,000-$55,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $46,194.

Hudson Mile-A-Minute Roadster

1912 Hudson Model 33 Mile-A-Minute Roadster

Offered by Bonhams | Amelia Island, Florida | May 20, 2021

Photo – Bonhams

The Speedster body style is a popular one that people slapped on old car chassis during restorations that have occurred pretty much since the 1940s. Everyone wanted a Mercer Raceabout, a Stutz Bearcat, or a Marion Bobcat. It’s rare to see such a car that is as it was from the factory.

Hudson’s Model 33 was produced in 1911 and 1912, Hudson’s second and third year of existence. The Mile-A-Minute Roadster was a factory model offered in 1912. The name denotes the car’s ability to reach 60 mph, which was no small feat in 1912. The 3.7-liter inline-four made 33 horsepower.

Only 5,708 Model 33s were built this year, very few of which were in this style. Even fewer survive. This one should sell for between $80,000-$120,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $89,600.

1916 Cole

1916 Cole 8-50 Tuxedo Roadster

Offered by Bring a Trailer Auctions | Online

Photo – Bring a Trailer

The Indianapolis-based Cole Motor Car Company existed between 1909 and 1925. Their claim to fame is that they were an early adopter of the V8 engine, which was actually introduced with this model, 1916’s 8-50 (which was more or less identical to 1917’s Series 860).

A handful of body styles were offered, including this three-seat roadster. That’s right, three seats. It’s practically a McLaren F1, except that the driver and front-passenger seats are split apart, with a narrow pathway to the rear bench that has a backrest for someone to sit in the middle.

The V8 engine, curiously, was actually produced by a then-division of General Motors. It’s a 5.7-liter V8 and it was made by Northway. The factory rating was 39 horsepower. This car is listed as a project, but the seller (the Indy Motor Speedway Museum) has a video of it driving around. Bidding is up to $8,500 at the time of this writing, and the car will sell at no reserve. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $22,750.

300SL Roadster

1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster

Offered by Mecum | Kissimmee, Florida | January 16, 2021

Photo – Mecum

I think we all know at this point that the Mercedes-Benz 300SL is one of the poster children for “collector cars.” The Gullwing coupe version is probably in the dictionary next to the phrase. The roadster was introduced in 1957 when the coupe was discontinued. It would be built through 1963.

Power is from a fuel-injected 3.0-liter inline-six. Output was rated at 240 horsepower when new. Also, keep in mind that fuel injection was no common sight in 1960. Or even 1970. The 300SL was really a landmark car and deserves its reputation as an amazing machine.

With its extended production run, the roadster was more common than the coupe, with 1,858 built. This restored example is finished in Silver Gray Metallic over red leather. It’s good-lookin’ stuff. A little over a decade ago, these were $500,000 cars. They’ve been trading right at about a million dollars now for the last five years or so. This one carries an estimate of $1,100,000-$1,300,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $1,210,000.

MGC Roadster

1968 MG C Roadster

Offered by Brightwells | Online | December 7-10, 2020

Photo – Brightwells

The MGC was a short-lived relative of the long-running MGB, the latter of which went on sale in 1962 and was produced through 1980. The B lost its chrome bumpers in 1975 and gained big rubber units, which made the earlier cars seem a lot prettier. This 1968 C is pretty much indistinguishable from the chrome-bumper MGB, with the exception of a subtle hood bulge.

Why the bulge? Well, the C was powered by a 145-horsepower, 2.9-liter inline-six. That’s two cylinders and 50 horsepower more than the B. The MGC was only produced between 1967 and 1969. It’s just a blip on the map of MGB production.

The car was supposed to be a replacement for the Austin-Healey 3000 (but it really wasn’t), and the heavier six-cylinder engine threw off the car’s handling. It was not a success, and only about 4,500 roadster variants ended up being built. This one was restored 30 years ago and is now expected to bring between $28,000-$31,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $22,560.

XK140 SE

1957 Jaguar XK140 SE Roadster

Offered by Historics Auctioneers | Ascot Racecourse, U.K. | December 12, 2020

Photo – Historics Auctioneers

Jaguar’s XK140 replaced their XK120 in 1954. It would be produced for three years and cover multiple body styles and a few sub-models, including the Special Equipment (SE) model, which was sold as the “MC” in the United States. The range was supplanted by the XK150 in 1957.

One body style was the Roadster, as shown here with a disappearing soft top. XK140s could also be had as fixed-head and drophead coupes, the latter saw the soft top pile up behind the seats when stowed. All XK140s were powered by a 3.4-liter inline-six, and in SE spec with a C-Type cylinder head, power was upped from 190 to 210 horsepower.

This restored example was a U.S.-spec car originally and has returned to the U.K. So I guess that makes it an SE by way of an MC. It should sell for between $90,000-$115,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Woods Dual Power

1917 Woods Dual Power Type 44 Roadster

Offered by Bonhams | London, U.K. | October 30, 2020

Photo – Bonhams

I’m not a huge fan of featuring project cars (this one is described as 80% complete), but the car itself is interesting – and rare – enough that I had to. The Woods Motor Vehicle Company was founded in Chicago in 1899. They produced electric vehicles through 1916, though they did sell gas-powered cars under the Woods Electric brand for a few years.

In 1917, the company rebranded as Woods Dual Power, a new marque that would last only through 1918. The new cars had an inline-four gas engine rated at 14 horsepower, in addition to an electric motor. Below 15 mph, the car drove on electricity (though the gas engine was still idling). After it hit 15, the gas motor would take over, pushing the car up to 35 mph. It was essentially a very early hybrid.

Only 1,900 examples were produced, and only four are known to survive. Three are in museums, and this example was restored in the 1980s. It was later present in a private German collection when a fire swept through and a beam landed on the Woods, crushing it. The current owner straightened the chassis, sourced a replacement gas engine, and rebuilt the electrics to roughly mimic the original running procedure. It now carries a roadster body and still needs some additional touches to be complete. In this state, it should sell for between $41,000-$45,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Not sold.

Little Four

1912 Little Four Roadster

Offered by The Vault | Online | October 1-14, 2020

Photo – The Vault

The Little Motor Car Company was founded by William Little and Billy Durant after Durant was forced out of GM. He went out and bought the Flint Wagon Works and set up Little and another marque, Mason. The company launched in 1911, and in 1912 Durant set up Republic Motors as Little’s corporate parent.

Republic also controlled the newly-formed Chevrolet, and some early Chevys were just re-badged Littles. Eventually, the Little plant starting building Chevrolets, which were more or less identical. Because the Chevrolet name was more marketable, Little was shut down by the end of 1913.

This four-cylinder roadster was built in 1912 and made 30 horsepower. It wears an older restoration, and it’s one of about 3,500 Littles produced. It is selling at no reserve. More info is available here, and more from this sale can be viewed here.

Datsun 2000 Roadster

1969 Datsun 2000 Roadster

Offered by Mecum | Las Vegas, Nevada | November 12-14, 2020

Photo – Bonhams

The Datsun Fairlady (or Sports) was a series of sports cars that preceded the “Z” line of cars that remains in production today. The series began in 1959 with the ultra-rare Sports 1000 and continued in rarefied form until the 1965 launch of the 1600 Roadster. This was when they started appearing in the United States.

In 1967, the 1600 was replaced with the 2000 Roadster, which was the pinnacle of this line of cars. It would eventually be dropped in favor of the 240Z in 1970. Power is from a 2.0-liter U20 inline-four generating 133 horsepower.

These are great little cars, and affordable too. I chose this one because I feel this is how they are supposed to look: with color-matched steel wheels wearing polished hubcaps. The tan soft top doesn’t hurt either. I feel like this one was transported here from a Yokohama back road from 50 years ago. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $19,800.