Thursday, June 29, 2023

Barn find Aero cars

A recent barn find uncovered several high-powered race cars for the road. A muscle car cornucopia, some are worthy of restoration.

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Top Cars at Monterey Car Week 2017

1950 Ferrari 166 MM/212 Export "Uovo" by Fontana - $4,510,000.

1959 Ferrari 250 GT Series I Cabriolet - $4,840,000
1959 Ferrari 410 Superamerica Series III Coupe - $5,335,000

1955 Ferrari 121 LM Spider by Scaglietti - $5,720,000
1959 Aston Martin DB4 GT Prototype - $6,765,000

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta by Scaglietti - $8,305,000
1970 Porsche 917K - $14,080,000

1966 Ferrari 275 GTB/C - $14,520,000
1995 McLaren F1 - $15,620,000

1956 Aston Martin DBR1 - $22,550,000

Monday, June 26, 2023

Destruction of the 1963 Chrysler Turbine Cars

Called “one of the greatest publicity stunts in automotive history,” the Chrysler Turbine car program ranks as one of the most unique automotive experiments ever. By the spring of 1963, Chrysler’s experiments with turbine-powered cars were known. Chrysler was the only automaker to take the next step and start to develop a turbine-powered car available for the public. In May of 1963, Chrysler not only introduced the Turbine car, it also announced that it would make 50 of the cars available for 3 month long test drives.
Turbine cars featured two-door sedan bodies built by Ghia that shared nothing with any other Chrysler product. Under the hood, they featured Chrysler’s fourth-generation A-381 regenerator turbine engine, good for 425-pound-feet of torque, hooked up to modified TorqueFlite three-speed automatic transmissions.

Aside from five prototypes, all 50 came in bronze paint, black vinyl top, and bronze leather interior. Acceleration was no problem to the turbine driven cars (0 - 100 km/h in 10 seconds), but issues were experienced by drivers. These included fuel consumption (12 mpg) and cabin heat generated by the turbine motor.
When Chrysler decided that it was never going to be a commercial proposition, they destroyed 40 of the prototypes, with 10 being given to museums.
"The decision to destroy the Turbine cars was pragmatic. Anything done outside of the control of the corporation could potentially create PR headaches and diminish the good image effects from the program in the eyes of the public. Nobody wanted a bunch of the cars running around with piston engines in them, and they sure would not let them out of hand with the gas turbines still installed. Best and most logical decision – destroy them."
Jay Leno owns a Chrysler Turbine Car--one of only two running examples in private hands. Because he bought it directly from Chrysler, he is the first owner of the machine seen here: Number 34, according to a polished piece of trim located on the inner windshield.

Leno calls the Turbine Car "the most collectible post-war car ever."

Saturday, June 24, 2023

1970 Chevrolet Chevelle LS6 Convertible - $467,400

Original build sheet. Nut and bolt, no expense spared frame-off restoration. Matching numbers LS6 454/450 HP V-8. Matching numbers M22 4-speed manual transmission. Desert Sand Metallic over black vinyl interior. G80 Positraction rear axle, 3.31 gear ratio. Power steering. Power front disc brakes. Power top. Cowl induction hood. Top dog in 1970 was the Chevrolet Chevelle LS6. Designated RPO Z15, checking off this hugely expensive option delivered a 450 hp, 454 ci solid lifter behemoth that cranked out 500 lbs.-ft. and bludgeoned all challengers.

4,475 LS6 were built in 1970, but how many were coupes, convertibles or El Caminos is unknown.
The number of LS6 Chevelle convertibles known to exist today is thought to be less than 20.
The LS6's juice came from its 11.25:1 compression ratio, rectangle-port heads with 2.19-inch intake valves, and a mechanical cam with .520 lift and 316 degrees duration. A low-rise aluminum intake with a 780-cfm Holley topped off the monster package.

For your consideration at Mecum.

1953 Ferrari 625 Targa Florio

1953 Ferrari 625 Targa FlorioBonhams’ Les Grand Marques a Monaco auction in 2018 featured a 1953 Ferrari 625 Targa Florio. Driven by Formula 1 champion Mike Hawthorn the car is equipped with a 2.5-litre, twin-overhead-camshaft four-cylinder. Only three 625 Targa Florios were ever made. The competition which made the car famous was the Mille Miglia, a race which it entered four times, in 1984, 1986, 1989 and 1990. The car was rediscovered by Ferrari historian Franco Lombardi in the mid 1970s in a Naples scrap yard. The car is one of only three ever made, and the only one known to have survived.
The last public appearance of the car was in 2006, at the Monaco Historic Grand Prix. Bonhams expected to fetch between 4.5m and 6.5m euros for the car ($5.5m - $8m) in 2018. It failed to find a buyer.

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Barn find 1961 Ferrari 250 GT Pinin Farina Coupe

The Ferrari 250 GT PF Coupe made its debut at the Paris Motor Show in 1958. It was based on the 250 GT Berlinetta Tour de France race car platform and featured elegant hand-shaped bodywork. 353 examples of the Ferrari 250 GT Pinin Farina Coupe were made, one of Ferrari’s earliest series production cars to be built in significant numbers. The cars were powered by the legendary Colombo V12, and were largely used as sporting grand tourers. This car was bought new by Italian automobile royalty Carlo Abarth. In 1966 the car was bought by an American owner and since 1968 it’s had just one keeper. The car is for sale after being untouched for 52 years.
The V12 was mated to a four-speed manual transmission with power sent back to a live axle that rode on semi-elliptic leaf springs and tubular shock absorbers. Up front the car was fitted with independent suspension of double A-arms and tubular shock absorbers. The Series II version of the 250 GT PF Coupe was introduced in 1960. It featured changes over the Series I model, the most notable of which were disk brakes. Powering the 250 GT PF Coupe was a 3.0 liter Colombo V12 engine, Ferrari’s most important engine design and the engine of choice for many of their most iconic vehicles. Initially the V12 produced 240 bhp in the 250 GT PF Coupe.
The car was a major commercial success for Ferrari at a critical point in the auto maker's history. The car is now being offered for sale out of Astoria, New York on eBay, with a classified ad price of $367,500 USD. An uber top end 1961 Ferrari 250 GT Pinin Farina Coupe without a famous former owner might make $800k.

1960 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz

1 of 1,285 produced in 1960. Frame-on restoration to correct specs. Finished in original code 99 Heather Metallic with code 12B Gray leather interior. Tri-Power 390/345 HP V-8 engine. Hydraulic valve lifters. Hydra-Matic transmission. Power steering. Power brakes. Bucket seats. White convertible top. Factory air conditioning. Power windows. Cruise control.
The equipment list included everything Cadillac could offer in comfort, convenience, and style for 1960. Price was a jaw dropping $7,750, the most expensive car built by GM. The 19 foot-long, 5,058 pound Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz convertible makes an undeniable statement.
The Cadillac Eldorado was manufactured and marketed by Cadillac from 1952 to 2002 over ten generations.
The Eldorado Biarritz represents an age of glamour for America, and 1960 represents the absolute pinnacle in its era.
This example made $121k in May 2019.

Sad sack 2012 McLaren MP4-12C Coupe - $77k high bid

The McLaren MP4-12C was the first production car designed and built by McLaren, and their first production road car since the McLaren F1. The car was launched in mid-2011 and carried a large $229,000 list price. The car is underappreciated today. A recent low mileage example at Mecum mustered a $77k bid. Top problem is the IRIS 1 system responsible for the radio, satellite navigation and other components of the heads-up display. The only solution is a £3,000 upgrade. Other issues include the air brake, transmission leakage, and airbag, any of which require expensive dealer servicing.
The 2012 McLaren MP4-12C is powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V8 making 592 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. The only available gearbox is a dual-clutch seven-speed automated manual transmission that drives the rear wheels. The MP4-12C uses a carbon fibre composite chassis, and makes use of Formula 1-sourced technologies such as "brake steer", where the inside rear wheel is braking during fast cornering to reduce understeer. Is the Mclaren MP4-12C a bargain? Probably not. Its buyer beware with any supercar. Repair and maintenance costs for the MP4-12C are massive, assuming one can find a McLaren authorized shop at all.

Monday, June 19, 2023

1935 Chevrolet Custom Phaeton - $107k

1 of 218 Phaetons produced in 1935. 1 of 7 thought to be remaining. V-8 engine with triple carburetor setup. Column shift automatic transmission. Maroon with Black fenders and Beige soft top. Tan leather bench seat interior. Keyless ignition system. Draft deflectors. Wood rimmed banjo style steering wheel. Woodgrain dash with vintage style arrow needled gauges. Power windows. Air conditioning. Winged mascot hood ornament. The V8 Ford Phaeton is one of the most desirible Pre War cars.
Dubbed America's most beautiful roadster, the 1935 Chevrolet Custom Phaeton featured a 85 hp flathead V8 with a three speed transmission.
Crossing the block at Mecum.