“Cramer Comet” Leads All-Star Customs at RM Monterey

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Monrovia, CA, June 19, 2008 – An exciting range of unique customs and exotic hot rods are set to cross the block this summer as part of RM Auctions’ much anticipated Sports & Classics of Monterey event in California.

To be held August 15th and 16th in historic downtown Monterey, the event will present a diverse range of marques and models for all automotive tastes. For collectors with an affinity for the rare and unusual, one of the highlights of the sale will be the unique, one-of-a-kind, custom bodied 1954 Cramer Comet roadster, offered for the first time at auction.

Built by Omaha-based mechanic Tom Cramer, the 1954 Cramer Comet was crafted as a two-place, high performance passenger car. Powered by a 1,350-horsepower, 12-cylinder Allison aircraft engine – the type that once powered such fighters as the P-51 Mustang – the car combines the elements of automotive and aircraft engineering and features an innovative cooling system that is channeled through the frame. Cramer, who owned the car up until 1991, was once quoted as stating “I wanted to see what would happen if you put a really high-powered engine in a chassis.”

The result is a car that is capable of propelling to estimated speeds of 160 miles an hour. The Comet was purchased by its current owner in 1991 directly from Mr. Cramer. The sale marks the first time it has ever been offered publicly for sale – an occasion set to draw widespread interest. (Est. $250,000 – $300,000)

“The Cramer Comet is much more than one man’s dream – it encapsulates the enthusiasm and skill brought home by returning GI’s. As such, it embodies the spirit of what many believe was the most thrilling period of automotive history,” said Mike Fairbairn, Executive Vice President of RM Auctions.

photo credit: Aloft Aerial Photography

“The timing of this offering is particularly important given the strong movement towards historical customs and street rods. The Cramer Comet has it all – engineering, performance and virtually one-owner provenance,” he added.

Ian Kelleher, Managing Director of RM Auctions added, “The Cramer Comet contrasts to other customs in that it was built without the backing of a corporation or a sponsor. It is a remarkable example of Tom Cramer’s creative vision and exceptional engineering.”

Also on offer at the Monterey sale are a range of more recently modified vehicles by some of today’s leading customizers and designers. Highlights include a stunning, art deco styled 1953 Cadillac Custom Eldo-Roadster ‘Tequila Sunset’, and an elaborate 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Seville Convertible, which was designed as an Elvis Presley tribute.

The Eldo-Roadster by Zanetti Kustoms is the first design of leading Australian and internationally syndicated cartoonist, Paul Zanetti. A passionate car collector and enthusiast, Zanetti’s design vision for his first ‘dream car’, was to create a 21st century rendition of the mid-20th century motorama show cars. The end result is a striking, gilded convertible, true to original period looks, with the added benefits of discretely hidden modern technology, such as DVD and GPS navigation. Finished in custom gold orange metallic paint, the car features remotely operated suicide doors, Italian leather interior and rides upon Diamondback wide whitewall radial tires. (Est. $175,000 – $275,000)

The custom 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Seville Convertible ‘Elvis Presley tribute’ is the third of three special tribute cars designed by leading California customizer, John D’Agostino. The most expensive and elaborate of the trio, the stunning ‘Elvis’ tribute is finished is lush diamond dust pearl lavender, and features diamond-studded jeweled automotive art, incorporating over 100 carats of pavé diamonds and crystals and 10 carats of amethyst stone. ‘Elvis’ has been shown extensively at auto shows across the US, Europe and Australia, and was most recently displayed at the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles. (Est. $190,000 – $240,000)

Following the California tradition of hot rods and customs, other notable consignments include: a 1932 Ford Roadster Hot Rod; a radical 1951 Mercury Custom Coupe by Rick Dore; an award winning 1939 Ford Deluxe Custom Convertible ‘Orange Crush’; a 1922 Ford Trojan Show Rod; and a 1937 Cadillac V16 Fleetwood Custom Sedan.

RM Auctions’ Sports & Classics of Monterey auction event will be held August 15th and 16th at the Portola Hotel and Spa and Monterey Conference Center, in Monterey, California. The exciting list of customs and hot rods will be joined by a magnificent line-up of luxurious classics, sports and racing cars on the auction block.

Admission to the Sports & Classics of Monterey auction event is $40 per person, with children 12 and under admitted free of charge. An auction catalog is available for an additional $100 US, including shipping and handling within North America. Visit www.rmauctions.com for more information.

[Photo courtesy of Aloft Aerial Photography]