1953 Gordini Type 24 S
Offered by RM Auctions | Paris, France | February 5, 2014
This is the first car RM Auctions announced for their sale in Paris this February… and they announced it last fall. I’ve been waiting to feature it since the day I saw it because I knew it was awesome and I knew it was rare.
Much like Enzo Ferrari, Amédée Gordini tuned and raced cars in the 1930s. After the war ended, he also started producing race cars under his own name. Unlike Ferrari, he never really built purpose-built road cars and his little company shut down in 1957 and he later sold the rights to his name to Renault. Imagine “Ferrari”-trim level Fiat 500s. Not a pretty sight.
But what he did in his day holds up – like this Type 24 S. The engine is a powerful 265 horsepower 3.0-liter straight-eight underneath an aluminium body. This car was a Gordini-factory race car and its competition history includes the following:
- 1953 24 Hours of Le Mans – DNS
- 1953 Tour de France Automobile – 1st or 2nd (with Jean Behra)*
- 1953 Carrera Panamericana – 76th, DNF (with Jean Behra)
- 1954 12 Hours of Reims – 28th, DNF (with Behra and Franco Bordoni)
- 1954 Tour de France Automobile – DQ (with Andre Guelfi and Julio Quinlin)
- 1954 Coupe de Salon at Montlhery – 1st (with Behra)
- 1955 1000km Buenos Aires – 5th (with Elie Bayol and Harry Schell)
- 1955 Mille Miglia – DNF (with Bordoni)
- 1955 24 Hours of Le Mans – DNS
So it never started at Le Mans, big deal. The bodywork that the car currently wears was added for the 1955 24 Hour race, but it had an accident in practice and didn’t get to race. This car was sold after 1955 and used by privateers in many events. It has had five owners in its life, all French.
Only 32 Gordinis of all types were built in their 11 years of construction. This is the only one like this and it is expected to sell for between $4,075,000-$5,435,000. You can read more here and see more from RM in Paris here.
*The auction catalog lists this car as the winner, but my other sources say it placed second. S/N #36.
Update: Failed to sell, high bid of $3,346,750.