August 18, 2005
New York – After the enthusiastic response and unequivocal success of Christie’s International Motor Cars first ever sale at the Monterey Jet Center in 2004, the auction house returns to the location with its largest and most enticing selection of motor cars to be offered on the Monterey Peninsula for five years.
Once again utilizing last year’s well-received format of holding the first auction during Monterey week, Christie’s sale takes place on the evening of Thursday 18 August – and the 50 cars that are set to realize in excess of $13 million go on public view on Monday 15 August.
Led by the celebrated Ferrari Breadvan, the sale encompasses a diverse array of American and European supercars and automobiles – with many of the most famous marques represented, including Ferrari, Bugatti, Mercedes and Talbot-Lago. The auction will also offer President Lyndon B Johnson’s Lincoln Continental, two outstanding cars owned by Washington Redskins’ owner Daniel Snyder, and a Cadillac owned by John Entwistle, bass player for The Who.
After a revolt against Enzo Ferrari by a flamboyant European Count in 1961, a legendary and unique sports car was born – the Ferrari ‘Breadvan’ (estimate: $3,500,000-5,000,000). Christie’s International Motor Cars is honored to be offering this supercar – the 1961 Ferrari 250 GT ‘Breadvan’ Berlinetta – and its appearance will undoubtedly be one of the leading highlights of the Monterey week (separate press release available).
Another pedigree Ferrari racecar on offer is the ex-Works 1965 Ferrari 1512 Formula One Monoposto (estimate: $1,000,000-2,000,000). The 1512 was introduced in late 1964, and at the time was widely regarded as technically without compare – one of only three ever built, this particular example was debuted at the 1965 German Grand Prix, where it qualified fourth before retiring. Six weeks later at Monza it finished a close fourth, proving the 1512 was a front runner, and soon after finished seventh in Mexico. Although never evolved from the 1965 season, the 1512 is viewed as one of the most significant Ferrari Formula One cars of all time and since withdrawal this example has remained unused.
Breaking away from Ferrari’s proud racing roots, the 1954 Ferrari 250 Europa 1st Series Two Seater Coupe is considered the first real step Ferrari took towards series production after its earlier sole focus on competition cars. With coachbuilding entrusted to Pininfarina, the car had a high degree of elegance and illustrated a serious attempt at attracting a new refined clientele. With production limited to twenty cars, this example is the last of that series produced – and in 1965 took class honors at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance (estimate: $450,000-600,000).
The Talbot-Lago Teardrop
A 1937 Talbot-Lago T150 C SS Teardrop Coupé is an extraordinary Christie’s Monterey highlight. An outstanding example from one of the greatest series of automobiles ever built, the Teardrop (or Goutte d’Eau) motor cars were the undisputed epitome of coachbuilder’s art in the immediate pre-war period. Only 14 definitive T150 C SS specification models were constructed, and the aerodynamic, avant garde body styles developed by Figoni et Falaschi, the finest ever produced, were legendary and even today remain advanced. This Teardrop, the fourth built, retains its original unique coachwork, all its original running gear, engine, gearbox and axles. One of the most desirable collector cars of all time, this exceptional automobile has only four documented owners, is truly without compare and offers a rare opportunity for the true connoisseur (estimate on request).
Corvettes from the Collection of Herb Chambers
Four Chevrolet Corvettes from Boston collector Herb Chambers offer a perfect insight into the allure and development of this famous American marque from its inception in the early 1950s to its finest production models of the late 1960s. The Corvette revolutionized the car market in America, and the early 1953 and 1954 examples were the first truly American post-war sports cars.
The 1954 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster from Chambers is one of the most remarkable Corvettes in existence, with only 1,374 original miles showing. The car comes with a staggering amount of original documentation and since 1957 has hardly been used (estimate: $100,000-120,000). The 1959 Chevrolet Corvette Fuel Injection Roadster illustrates the first tempering influences the new director of GM Styling, Bill Mitchell, brought to the model. A cleaner, simpler and more integrated appearance reveal a less flamboyant attitude to design (estimate: $75,000-90,000). The 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Split-Window Coupe reveals GM’s aggressive restyling of the Corvette – producing the strong and streamlined Stingray. An instant hit when launched in 1963, the design was influenced by Bill Mitchell’s own race car (estimate: $70,000-90,000). The 1967 model year is considered by many to be most desirable for all Corvettes and the 1967 Stingray ‘Big Block’ Convertible example from Chambers Collection is in excellent condition (estimate: $100,000-130,000).
Presidents, Football Team Owners and British Bass Guitarists
A 1964 Lincoln Continental Convertible owned by former President of the United States Lyndon B. Johnson provides a stately focus for the sale. An iconic convertible of the mid-1960s, the Continental’s restrained styling marked a startling departure from the chrome-laden late 1950s. The President used the car to give tours of his Texan ranch, often frightening passengers and sending cattle in every direction (estimate: $40,000-60,000).
Two important cars owned by Washington Redskins’ owner Daniel Snyder provide further capital highlights, including a 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing, one of the most coveted vintage automobiles, and a 1933 Lincoln KB Convertible Coupe. The Mercedes, based on the futuristically-styled and dominating 300SL race cars Mercedes created in 1952, caused a sensation amongst the car community when launched in 1955. The street-version 300SL Gullwing was stunning to look at and remarkable to drive – 1,400 were built (estimate: $250,000-300,000). The 1933 Lincoln arguably represents the pinnacle of aesthetics and mechanical achievement for the Lincoln marque – and the Convertible Coupe, with only 37 produced, was one of the most popular and desirable styles (estimate: $130,000-170,000).
A 1957 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible, an eloquent symbol of rising American prosperity in the post-war years, also features, and was owned by the bass guitarist from The Who, the late John Entwistle (estimate: $75,000-100,000).
The introduction of the Type 43 Bugatti in 1927 sent a shockwave through the motoring world, offering drivers the first production car to comfortably exceed 100mph. Christie’s offers a 1930 Bugatti Type 43A Roadster, completed in late 1928 and one of only 19 or 20 built. Retaining all of its original mechanical components along with original leather seats and patinated bodywork, this wonderfully preserved sports car is set to garner much attention (estimate: $700,000-900,000). The auction also includes over 25 lots of Bugatti design drawings by Lucien Schlatter – with estimates ranging from $250 to $4,000.
A notable two-wheel highlight is a 1914 Indian Motorcycle ‘Hendee Special’. Indian Motorcycles were the hands-down industry leader in the early 20th century, and this example may be one of fewer than ten remaining. A hugely significant milestone in motorcycling history, the ‘Hendee Special’ was famous in its time. Amazingly, its former owner, Mr. Boks, never rode the bike after 1917 when his fiancée agreed to marriage only if he would leave motorbikes well alone. Virtually untouched since then and a veritable symbol of true love, the bike even has air left in its back tire and is a must-have for any serious motorcycle collector (estimate: $45,000-65,000).
Auction: Exceptional Motor Cars at the Monterey Jet Center
August 18, 2005
Viewing: Monterey Jet Center, Monterey, California
August 15 – 18
Christie’s is the longest continuous name in the collectors’ car market, having held auctions devoted solely to motor cars since 1972. Christie’s remains the choice of the individual who wishes to sell a unique and rare motor car or collection. Uniquely placed in the market, Christie’s International Motor Cars concentrates on quality rather than quantity. The Department consists of eight specialists based in London, Brussels, New York, Texas and California, devoted to a wide network of sale sites that stretch from Monterey to Paris and include regular auctions in London, Paris, Monterey and New York.
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