Top 10 cars heading for auction at Monterey Car Week
We've picked out the most interesting lots from Pebble Beach's major collector car auctions next week. No, we didn't forget the Ferrari 250 GTO! Read on to find out why it's 'missing'...
Top 10 cars heading for auction at Monterey Car Week
There's only a week to go until Monterey Car Week, featuring six major collector car auctions amongst a plethora of other events.
Across these six auction dockets are thousands of classics, many of individual significance in both their production rarity and provenance. We picked out 10 vehicles to watch for in next week's auctions.
RM Sotheby's: 1963 Aston Martin DP215
You've probably noticed RM Sotheby’s are offering a 250 GTO in their Monterey sale. There's no doubt of its significance, yet arguably it isn't the most interesting lot on offer.
Of all RM Sotheby’s lots at Monterey, the 1963 Aston Martin DP215 Grand Touring Competition Prototype is even more eye-catching. It is the sole DP215 example built, designed to compete at Le Mans in 1963 where it was driven by Lucien Bianchi and Phil Hill.
DP215 was the last racecar built by the factory during the David Brown era of Aston Martin and the ultimate incarnation of the fabled DB4 GT. No matter its selling price, this unique one-off piece of automotive history will always be much better value that any Ferrari 250 GTO.
RM Sotheby's: Maserati A6G/2000 Berlinetta Zagato
Another notable offering from RM Sotheby’s is a 1956 Maserati A6G Zagato bodied Berlinetta. This stunningly beautiful car is number 11 from a total of 20 Zagato-bodied A6G cars, campaigned in the 1956 Mille Miglia by privateer Luigi 'Gigi' Taramazzo.
It's no stranger to Pebble Beach either, having been awarded 2nd place in Maserati's 100th Anniversary celebration in 2014, along with the Vitesse Elegance Trophy. With class wins at Villa d’Este and Amelia Island thereafter, it's safe to say there are fewer machines on offer at Monterey this year which can match the A6G/2000s beauty.
Gooding & Company: 1966 Porsche 911 Spyder
This one-off Porsche 911 concept was built for Californian Porsche importer John von Neumann, who commissioned Nuccio Bertone to craft a drop-top version of Stuttgart's famous sportscar.
After first seeing a picture of this car many years ago in an old magazine, I instantly fell in love. It's a car you would drive every day, as was von Neumann's intention – use it as a regular car on weekdays before taking it to the track on a Sunday.
Sadly the car is a bit above most buyers' thresholds with a pre-auction estimate of $700,000 – $1,000,000. But if you've got the money to spend, it's worth going all the way to the high end of that estimate for a truly unique piece of Porsche history.
Gooding & Company: 1950 Ferrari 166 MM/195 S Berlinetta Le Mans
Certain cars from Maranello are known for starting the Ferrari mythology. This is one of them. Originally bought new by Briggs Cunningham and with extensive period race history and racing success, 0060 M offers everything you could want from a Ferrari in a single car.
If you thought Gooding & Co's one-off Bertone-bodied 911 was pricey, this Ferrari takes it to another level, commanding a pre-auction estimate of $6,500,000 – $7,500,000. Which is surprisingly reasonable in the grand scheme of Ferrari auction prices.
Bonhams: 1955 Swallow Doretti
Believed to be the final Swallow Doretti built, this car is the thinking man's alternative to an AC Ace.
Eligible for every vintage event on the planet and with style in spades, this could be one of the best value buys at Monterey this year. With a pre-auction estimate of $125,000 – $175,000, it's one to keep an eye out for.
Bonhams: 1929 Bentley 4½-Litre Sports Tourer
Bonhams are also auctioning off a 1929 Bentley 4½-Litre Sports Tourer with coachwork by Vanden Plas. This particular example is no different. It was bought new by a Major E G Thomson, a wealthy Scottish shipbuilder best known in car circles for his support of the iconic Ecurie Ecosse racing team.
When taking delivery of his Bentley, Thomson bucked the trend of painting Bentleys in British Racing Green, instead having the car liveried in an understated grey hue, matching his fleet of ships.
This car is reported to be 'one of the most original 4½-Litres to survive', an attractive proposition should you be able to cough up the auction estimate of $1,250,000 – $1,500,000.
Worldwide Auctioneers: 1979 Lotus Esprit S2
Finished in white with tan leather, this is one of the finest examples of an early Esprit out there. That white paintwork makes all the difference, evoking memories of the Roger Moore-era of James Bond movies.
With no reserve attached to its lot, expect a bidding war to break out and drive the price up. That doesn't mean someone won't get lucky – anything under $40,000 would be an excellent buy.
Worldwide Auctioneers: 1938 Mercedes-Benz 170 V Cabriolet A
Worldwide's other eye-catching auction lot is a 1938 Mercedes-Benz 170 V Cabriolet A. These cars offer more pre-war motoring enjoyment for the dollar than just about any other pre-war European car.
Admittedly they are not the most rapid of devices but, what they lack in pace, they more than compensate for in sheer elegance. At the $140,000 – $160,000 estimate, this car is bound to be a good buy, even when considering it last changed hands less than two years ago at Amelia Island for $110,000.
Mecum: 1989 Porsche 962
There is literally a car for every budget available at Mecum's Monterey sale, such is the variety on offer. But we're here for the heavy hitters, so a weapons-grade Porsche 962 fits the bill nicely.
As IMSA-spec 962s go it has a stronger provenance than most, winning the 1989 Rolex 24 at Daytona with racing legend Derek Bell at the wheel. If you're after a car to compete in next year's Monterey Motorsports Reunion, this is it. Race cars with this kind of history don't cross the auction block every day, especially when it's estimated to sell for $2,000,000 – $2,500,000.
Russo & Steele: 1958 Lancia B20 Aurelia
With coachwork by Pininfarina and said to be in largely original condition, this is another car that ticks all the boxes. It's near impossible to find LHD examples of the B20, making this one especially sought after. Combined with concours eligibility and sheer elegance, this B20 is a winner.
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