James Hunt's Mercedes Benz 560SEC Sold on Auction

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Better known for his partying lifestyle and 1976 Formula 1 World Championship title, James Hunt was also an avid breeder of budgerigar birds and an owner of some great road cars. One of his cars, a 1988 Mercedes-Benz 560SEC Coupe, has just been sold by Brightwells Auctioneers for a bargain price of £15,400. It's not often you can say you're the owner of a car formerly belonging to an F1 world champion for less than the cost of a new hatchback.

The big, V8-powered coupé attracted an encouraging amount of interest prior to the auction and was eventually sold to a telephone bidder from Germany.

The exact origins of the car aren't known, but it is believed it was a gift to Hunt, and meant Hunt joined fellow F1 stars Ayrton Senna and Nigel Mansell in owning a SEC model, he owned it up until 1991 - a year before his death, after which it changed hands and registration numbers several times.

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Accompanying the sale is the original logbook, which displays Hunt's names, and shows that the new owner also changed the car's registration plate when he received the keys. Subsequent owners also made the decision to change the plates, including one who went back and bought the old plates for the car, and was last sold a couple of years ago.

Approximately 142,500 miles have been covered by the car since 1988, and after the mileage started to show the car was sent to Fraser Pemberton Classic Automotive for refurbishing. This included a sprucing of the paintwork to make it look showroom fresh, a replacement front windscreen and a thorough service. The full leather Mushroom colour interior was cleaned and recolored, and the complex 1980s electrics still work, including the heated seats, sunroof, steering column, outside temperature gauge.

When the gavel fell on this 560SEC, its buyer acquired a slice of British racing history at a rather good price…

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Five Rapidly Appreciating Cars from the Class of 1992

The experts at ClassicCars.com have identified five vehicles from the 1992 model year that represent great investments.

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The experts at ClassicCars.com have identified five vehicles from the 1992 model year that represent great investments—especially for nostalgic-minded enthusiasts looking for something special to drive to their 25th reunion.

“Representing a broad spectrum of domestic and import makes and models, this list identifies cars that are showing significant signs of appreciation on the market,” said Andy Reid, ClassicCars.com’s East Coast editor and analyst. “These cars represent a new segment of the collector car hobby, which emphasizes models from the ’80s and ’90s.

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1992 Acura NSX—A landmark car when introduced, the NSX was the first sensible supercar to offer all the glitz and glamour of an exotic with Honda reliability. Only 7421 were made for U.S. buyers over the eight-year lifespan of this first-generation model. With availability limited, demand continues to grow

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1992 BMW M3—Universally hailed as one of the best BMW’s ever built, it’s basically the Swiss army knife of cars, available as a convertible, sedan or coupe, an option for every taste. The M3 also boasts a well-documented heritage as a race car. The first-generation M3 delivered everything it promised, and more. Models from 1992—especially those with low mileage—are extremely valuable

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1992 Dodge Viper—The brainchild of Bob Lutz with input from Carrol Shelby, the Viper is a modern-day Cobra, the kind of car we’ll never see again. Only 285 Vipers were built in 1992, the year this supercar made its debut. This is the model year that true collectors want, but availability is scarce

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1992 Porsche 968—The final version of the Porsche 924/944 platform, this reengineered ’92 model was the first to be completely built by Porsche, with no input from Audi. Total North American production that year was limited to 1,440 units. Very few are available, and low-mileage ones are almost impossible to find

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1992 Toyota MR2—The 1992 MR2 has gone up in price because good examples of low-mileage cars are scarce. We’ve seen a resurgence in demand for Japanese cars, and this is one of those that is extremely sought after.

“With the exception of the Viper, all offer niceties of a modern car but all the nostalgia of a classic,” Reid said. “This new generation of collectors love driving these cars. Accordingly, these five are as usable as they are collectible.”

Ferrari 250 GTO Sells for Record Breaking $70 million

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One of the finest examples of the most desirable of Ferraris has changed hands for $70million

A Ferrari 250 GTO has sold privately for a rumoured $70million (£52million) making it the most expensive car to ever be sold. The car that now holds this world record is chassis number 4153GT – a silver GTO built in 1963.

Any Ferrari 250 GTO is a rare and special car – that’s why the most expensive car sold at auction is also a Ferrari 250 GTO – but this one boasts a specification and history very few of the 39 250 GTOs can compete with. Firstly, it is one of the earlier and prettier Series I cars, rather than having the Series II bodywork reminiscent of the 250 LM.

 The 250 GTO is known as the Holy Grail model for its looks, rarity and smoothness on the road.

The 250 GTO is known as the Holy Grail model for its looks, rarity and smoothness on the road.

It is also one of the few 250 GTOs not to be painted red. Instead, it’s finished in silver with a yellow stripe running perpendicular across the bonnet, the livery of Belgium team Ecurie Francorchamps.

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As well as being cosmetically desirable, this GTO also has its original engine, rather than a replacement from another 250 Ferrari, and has never been crashed. However, it was restored back in the 1990s and has, more recently, been certified by Ferrari Classiche.

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The 250 GTO’s range of abilities – that it was able to compete competitively on circuits as well as on the many road rallies and hill climbs that took place in the 1960s – is demonstrated by this car’s impressive history.

Not only did this GTO race at Le Mans in ’63 (finishing fourth overall) and in the Spa 500km Grand Prix in ’64 (where it finished sixth overall), chassis 4153GT also won the 1964 Tour De France and then came third (and first in class) in the Mont Ventoux hill climb.

The new owner of this 250 GTO is David MacNeil, CEO of WeatherTech – a car floor mat manufacturer and the current title sponsor of the IMSA championship. MacNeil purchased the car from Christian Glaesel, a German classic car collector and historic racer.

  David MacNeil.

David MacNeil.

 Ferrari historian Marcel Massini said he expects a GTO to fetch $100million (£75million) within five years.

Ferrari historian Marcel Massini said he expects a GTO to fetch $100million (£75million) within five years.

Pebble Beach Concourse will Feature Citroen for the First Time.

Chapron cabriolets will headline French marque's turn in the spotlight

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For the first time in its long history Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance will spotlight Citroen as its featured marque with a display of rare coach built cars.

When talk turns to coach built Citroens the name Chapron pops up first; this coachbuilder was responsible not only for the "factory" DS cabriolet, but also a stunning variety of other DS sedans and cabriolets, many of them quite subtle to the uninitiated. While Chapron was by no means the only major Citroen coachbuilder -- let's not forget Heuliez -- it will be cars reworked by Chapron that will take centre stage on the 18th fairway later this year. The concours organizers have just released an early sketch of the official poster for the concours, with three Chaprons appearing on the artwork.

 The concours' official poster for 2018, by artist Barry Rowe, will slowly transform from a sketch to a painting over the course of the summer. PHOTO BY BARRY ROWE

The concours' official poster for 2018, by artist Barry Rowe, will slowly transform from a sketch to a painting over the course of the summer. PHOTO BY BARRY ROWE

"At the forefront of the poster is the two-tone blue 1966 Citroën DS 21 Chapron Le Léman Coupé, one of roughly 24 produced," the concours organizers write. "This very car (chassis no. 4350020) graced the stage at the 1966 Geneva Motor Show and represents the pinnacle of Citroën custom coachwork. The green 1967 DS 21 Chapron Cabriolet d'Usine was transformed to convertible specification straight from the factory while the Yellow DS 19 exemplifies the essence of the original DS saloon. All three of these Citroëns have been fully restored by renowned Citroën expert Vincent Crescia, who currently operates out of the very building that housed his father's Citroën dealership."

 Citreon Traction Avant

Citreon Traction Avant

 Citreon SM

Citreon SM

Aside from the DS and its myriad versions, there will be a selection of other "greatest hits" by this French marque, with the Traction Avant, SM, GS, 2CV and CX being the usual suspects. There's no shortage of notable Citroens in California, however the general consensus is that Citroens from all over the U.S. and Europe will be in attendance, and we wouldn't rule out much later examples like the BX.  

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Citreon GS

"Interest in Citroën among collectors has seen exponential growth in recent years, and the Concours is pleased to showcase custom coachwork Citroëns that offer the best of French technology and design,” said Concours Chairman Sandra Button.

 Citreon 2CV

Citreon 2CV

 Citreon CX

Citreon CX

 Citreon BX

Citreon BX