One of the more romantic offerings at Worldwide’s 4th annual Labor Day extravaganza, The Auburn Auction, represents every serious collector’s dream. Restorer and Chrysler enthusiast, Jeff Carter and his wife Lisa, on an ongoing hunt for early Chryslers, made the ultimate discovery in a Washington barn. The dusty 1948 Delahaye 135M Chapron DHC they awakened from a 35 year slumber, complete with vintage volcanic ash from the 1982 Mount St. Helen’s eruption, began life as a Paris show car, retains complete originality, has had just a handful of owners from new, and remarkably still runs and drives. This outstanding example of one of the most significant series of French vehicles ever conceived, with coachwork by master craftsman Henri Chapron, is offered completely without reserve and will go home with the very fortunate highest bidder on the evening of Saturday, September 3rd.
Since its discovery earlier this year, the car’s history has been extensively researched. Henri Chapron’s daughter, Noelle, has revealed original factory records indicating that it was displayed at the Salon d’ Automobile in Paris in 1949 on the Chapron stand, confirmed again by the founding President of Club Delahaye, himself a Delahaye salesman after the second world war. Subsequently sold to a wealthy French gentleman living in Meknes, Morocco, the car still bears its original Moroccan license plate. In 1958, an American Air Force pilot traded his 1955 Lincoln Convertible for the Delahaye in Morocco, later shipping it to New Orleans, and then driving it through California up to Spokane, WA, before eventually trading it in to Empire Lincoln Mercury for a brand new 1964 Lincoln convertible. The next owner was a jeweler who kept it for a few years and then traded it to Don Rohrer’s Select Cars for a 1959 Cadillac Coupe. In 1966, the car was sold to the owner of the farm in whose barn it was discovered in 2011, having been moved there in 1976 with just 61,397 miles showing on the odometer.
“This is a remarkable barn find that has not only survived with completely original panels, chassis, paint and interior, but also runs and drives,” said Rod Egan, Principal & Chief Auctioneer. “Whether it’s fortunate new owner chooses to simply maintain the mechanicals and enjoy it untouched, or completely restore it, this wonderful motorcar is sure to be much sought after by the serious collector.”
Visitors to The Auburn Auction can look forward to an astonishing range of consignments presented over the three day sale, including an exceptional 1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50 HP Silver Ghost London to Edinburgh Type Tourer by Mann Egerton, one of most accurate and original component Silver Ghosts known to exist, an unrestored 1939 GMC Futurliner #3, one of only twelve built in 1941 for the Parade of Progress, the most original example known, and a fully documented 1965 Shelby Mustang GT 350 Competition Model, one of only 36 ever made and once again the most original of its kind. No less than six No Reserve collections have been consigned, including the Fred Kohl Estate Collection, a selection of spectacular hot rods including the multiple award winning 1934 Chevrolet “Phantom” Sedan-“Instigator”. Full details on all of this year’s consignments are available by calling Worldwide at 1.260.925.6789, or online at WWGauctions.com, where interested parties can download the full digital catalogue along with information on schedules, bidder registration and ticket sales . The Auburn Auction is scheduled for Friday, Saturday & Sunday, September 2nd, 3rd & 4th, at the Worldwide Auction Park, and following the success of last year’s expanded sale, this year’s event gets bigger and better again, with a car corral, vendor booths and great food, all running in parallel with three days of auction action. The More Great Cars segment of the sale runs from September 2nd- 4th from 10am daily, with Saturday evening’s Main Event on September 3rd at 6pm.