Now that the 24 Hours of LeMans is finished for another year, we can turn our attention to the Le Mans Classic, a vintage racing weekend July 4-6 that will include some 500 historic racing cars and the third annual Artcurial LeMans Classic auction.
“LeMans Classic is a major international event that pays tribute to the most famous motor race in the world,” Matthieu Lamoure, managing director of Artcurial Motorcars said in a news release, which includes some of the cars to be offered at the auction.
“In keeping with this, our sale will offer all types of competition and grand touring automobiles coming from several private collections,” he continued.
“In the current strong and dynamic market, we have a wide selection of cars on offer, from the AC Cobra that returns to Le Mans 50 years after it crossed the finish line of the LeMans 24 Hours in 1964 to Porsche and Lancia collections. One-hundred-fourteen automobiles appealing to all tastes!”
Artcurial is including plenty of Italian cars in the sale, especially in the aftermath of the success of its Solo Alfa sale during Retromobile earlier this year Paris. A feature at LeMans will be Solo Lancia, including 11 cars from a Lancia dealer in Perugia, Italy, among them a 1957 Aurelia B24 convertible and 1965 Flaminia Supersport Zagato.
Other special collections available include a group of Alfa Romeos from the Telecommunications museum in Milan, Jaguars from a French enthusiast’s collection, and half a dozen “rare” Porsche 993 models.
The Cobra mentioned by Lamoure is a 1964 AC Cobra 289 that finished 18th overall and 11th in the GT category in the 24-hour race in 1964 in the hands of Regis Fraissinet and Jean de Mortemart, who were driving for the Chardonnet team.
At least three other cars with LeMans history will be offered. One of them is a 1959 DB Panhard HBR5 competition coupe “Vitrine.” The car raced at Le Mans in 1959, 1960 and 1961, finishing 19th overall in 1960 and 21st the following year. The car was restored to its Le Mans “Vitrine” configuration several years ago, and was honored as the best restoration on the 2008 Paris-Deauville Rally.
Another car with LeMans credentials (as well as those from its Mille Miglia participation) is a 1954 Tank Deutsch & Bonnet Renault HDR which has been maintained in original condition. The car raced earlier this year in the inaugural Grand Prix de Lyon vintage event.
Other cars scheduled for the auction include a 1972 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona in Group 4 Transformation guise and with a long racing history based in Singapore (and with only 19,500 miles on its odometer).
Other consignments include a 1961 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL roadster, a 1973 Porsche 911 2.7-liter Carrera RS (with 77,500 kilometers on its clock), and a pair of race-prepped 2010 Aston Martin DBRS9 GT3s.
Other cars in the Solo Lancia section of the sale include a 1946 Aprilia cabriolet Speciale Pininfarina prototype shown at the Paris Motor Show and a 1992 Delta Integrale HF Evo I Martini 5 with only 1800 km on its odometer.
Among the Alfas will be a 1956 Giulietta Veloce “Sebring” barchetta that participated in the 1956 Mille Miglia. The car is one of 20 such single seaters built.
Yet others include a 1968 Bizzarrini 5300GT Strada, a 1959 Ferrari 250 GT Series I Pininfarina coupe, a 1969 Honda S800 coupe, and a 1982 Airstream Classic 310 motorhome with four beds and a full kitchen.