1931 Bugatti Royale Kellner Coupe – Sold for £5.5m The Bugatti royal had a 12.7 litre engine( more than 770 cu in) it had a 1931 price of $45,000 that today would be around$700,000. Only six were built, and only four sold. The two that he kept were hidden behind false walls in his French estate during world war II to prevent the Germans from seizing them. These two were bought alongside a refrigerator in 1951, and then sold again before this one came up for sale in 1987. It sold for a record £5.5m, which still stands, although today that would be worth nearer nine million pounds.
1929 Mercedes-Benz 38/250 ssk – Sold for £4.18m “The fastest sports car in the world” was how it was advertised. The factory made between 31 and 35 ssk’s, however there are many cars, up to 98, which can claim some authenticity by being created from crashed parts of originals. There are possibly five “honest” ssk’s, and only one or two perfect ones, accounting for a huge range in price. One, a 1928 model, with an unclear provenance sold for $662,500, and this 1929 model sold for £4.18 million.
1931 Bugatti Berline de Voyager – Sold for £3.4m A beautiful car, and undoubtedly one of the most desirable cars in the world. It was bought by Bill Harrah, and upon his death in 1984 his huge car collection was largely split between three auctions. This one was open to anyone, but there were 36 bidders who were able to bid over $1 million. It eventually sold for $6.5 million in 1984.
1962 Ferrari 330 TRI/LM – Sold for £3.4m This is a particularly significant Testa Rossa in that it won Le Mans. It produced nearly 400bhp, and was the most powerful Testa Rossa ever. After Le Mans the 330 was retired, and replaced by the 250p. The car raced again at Le Mans under the NART team. It suffered huge accident damage, but the driver was unharmed. The car was re-bodied as a coupe, and later a replica of the 1962 shell was made for Pierre Bardinon. It was restored to original condition with the correct engine and chassis, and sold in 2002 for $6.5m. It was then offered for sale again in the 2005 Sotherby’s Ferrari auction.
1958 Ferrari 412 s – Sold for £2.9m This is basically a European sports car, with a big American engine in, to compete in America. There was only a sole 412 s made, and its first outing ended in retirement due to mechanical fault. Its racing career was largely unsuccessful, however its place in history is very significant, being driven by Phil Hill, and being one of the first Ferrari’s with disc brakes. It was just sold at RM auctions for $5.61 million.
1966 Ferrari 330 P3 – Sold for £2.9m With the making of the new one off P4/5 it seems appropriate to talk about this style, and racing icon. The P3 was a revision of the P2 built on the same chassis. It was the first time Ferrari used fibreglass on one of their cars, and there were only ever 3 made. It was sold at Christies in 2000 at pebble beach it fetched $5.616 million
1930 Bentley speed six – Sold for £2.97m This was the pinnacle of pre war British motoring. Achieving second place at le-mans, it beat the Mercedes SSK. When it was sold at Christies it was mostly un-restored, and set a record price for a British car.
1935 Duesenberg SJ Speedster – Sold for £2.4m This 400bhp monster was designed for one thing and one thing only. Speed. More over to break the land speed record. It did so achieving 3,253 miles in 24 hours at 135.47 miles per hour. At the pebble beach sale in 2004 this truly classy car achieved $4.5 million
1964 Shelby Cobra Daytona coupe – Sold for £2.3m Ferrari had won the endurance world championship year after year, and so in 1964 Shelby decided he needed something new to “whip Ferrari’s ass”. This was what he came up with, and it did it with superb style in the 1965 championship. This fact is what gave it its huge price tag in 2000.
GM Futureliner – Sold for £2.3m There were only ever 12 of these retro beauties built, and this particular one was the star of GM’s 1953 Parade of progress. They’re strictly speaking busses, and with a very high driving position you need a stairway to get up to the cab. Of the 12, the whereabouts of 8 are known. One is now a mobile home, another is a publicity vehicle, another was used to sell mobile/cell phones, and was sold in 2006 for $4.0 million, two are being used for parts, and three are under restoration.