British royalty assembled for Bonhams’ Goodwood auction

The Bentley is a massive motorcar that could cruise at 100 mph | Bonhams photos
The Bentley is a massive motorcar that could cruise at 100 mph | Bonhams photos

The 1931 Bentley 8-Litre Sedanca de Ville is a palace among motorcars, a royal barge powered by a massive 488-cubic-inch inline-6 that could transport its pampered occupants at more than 100 mph despite its heavy formal coachwork.

The Bentley, the sole remaining example of six Sedanca-bodied limousines built that year, will roll majestically across the auction block June 30 during Bonhams’ collector car and automobilia auction held at Goodwood House during the annual Goodwood Festival of Speed in England. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1948 Bentley MKVI coachbuilt coupe

The Bentley is adorned with a beautiful body by the coachbuilders at James Young
The Bentley is adorned with a beautiful body by the coachbuilders at James Young

Getting a car accepted to show at a top concours d’elegance such as Pebble Beach or Amelia Island is quite a difficult endeavor to pull off. You need a coachbuilt car to start with, and you need a car from a marque that is well-respected.

Those ingredients add up to a car that can cost quite a bit of money, in the realm of many hundreds of thousands of dollars, which makes the climb to entry for these events quite steep. Continue reading

Three 1920s sports classics offered by Bonhams at Greenwich

The Stutz Model M Dual-Cowl Speedster is a rare sport/luxury car | Bonhams photos
The Stutz Model M Dual-Cowl Speedster is a rare sport/luxury car | Bonhams photos

Three sporty 1920s classics will be among the early automobiles offered during Bonhams’ auction in  Greenwich, Connecticut,  on June 4th at the waterfront Roger Sherman Baldwin Park. Continue reading

Ray Davies’ Bentley, a rock ‘n roll relic, at Silverstone auction

The Benley sedan has been in storage since 1991 | Silverstone auctions
The Benley sedan has been in storage since 1991 | Silverstone auctions

In 1966, Ray Davies – the lead singer and songwriter for the iconic British rock band The Kinks – took some of his newfound rock ‘n roll money and bought a 1960 Bentley S2 sedan. His family had convinced him to buy the huge car despite the fact that he didn’t drive.

The Davies family did use the car, however, according to the legendary rock star who is quoted in a news release from Silverstone Auctions, which will offer the Bentley on May 13 at its Silverstone circuit sale in England. Continue reading

‘Gentleman’ collector gets full day at RM Sotheby’s Amelia sale

The 1936 Lancia Astura Cabriolet III “Tipo Bocca” is the most-valuable car in the collection | RM Sotheby's
The 1936 Lancia Astura Cabriolet III ‘Tipo Bocca’ is the most-valuable car in the collection | Darin Schnabel/RM Sotheby’s photos

Orin Smith was known as a consummate collector of fine automobiles, a man of means with an eye for beauty and a flair for living life to the fullest. During 20 years of collecting and restoring classic cars, and compiling an enviable assortment of concours trophies, Smith gathered together a large and carefully curated group of impressive vehicles, many of them special or unique examples from the world’s greatest marques.

Smith, 81, passed away in August 2016, and his family has opted to consign his collection to RM Sotheby’s, an auction house with which he had a close connection. Fifty-eight of Smith’s cars will be offered at RM Sotheby’s upcoming auction on Amelia Island, Florida. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1998 Bentley Continental R coupe

The Bentley Continental Turbo R is capable of exceptional performance
The Bentley Continental Turbo R is capable of exceptional performance

One of my favorite things about the collector car hobby is finding a car that was once very expensive and buying it at the bottom of its depreciation cycle. I have done this quite few times, and in every case, I ended up driving a great car that increased in value over my ownership so that when I sold it, I had essentially owned it for free.

Lately, I have been looking closely at the Bentley Continental R coupe built from 1991 until 2002. Over that period, Bentley built only 1,236 of them, and when new, they cost northward of $300,000. Continue reading

Big Bentley ‘Bobtail’ racer set for RM Sotheby’s Florida auction

The 1928 Bentley 'Bobtail' wears a body designed by Vanden Plas | RM Sotheby's photos
The 1928 Bentley ‘Bobtail’ wears a body designed by Vanden Plas | RM Sotheby’s photos

One of the mammoth factory cars raced by the Bentley team as the Roaring ‘20s drew to a close, the famed 1928 Bentley 4½-Litre Le Mans Sports “Bobtail” that competed twice in the 24 Hours of Le Mans will be offered for sale during RM Sotheby’s auction at Amelia Island, Florida, in March.

The Bentley Bobtail, chassis No. KM3088, raced at Le Mans in 1928 and 1929, placing third overall in the latter race. It also finished second overall at the 1929 Brooklands Double Twelve at an average speed 81.39 mph. Continue reading

Bentley inspired by ‘Scalded Cats’ heads to auction

1952 Bentley R-Type Straight 8 Special was built as tribute to famed 'Scalded Cat' cars | H&H Classics photos
1952 Bentley R-Type Straight 8 Special was built as tribute to famed ‘Scalded Cat’ cars | H&H Classics photos

A one-off 1952 Bentley R-Type Straight 8 Special inspired by the “Scalded Cats” prototypes headlines H&H Classics’ final auction of the year, the Chateau Impney sale scheduled for December 7 at Droitwich Spa in the UK.

The auction docket includes a “brace of Bristols,” a Bentley Continental R, and even an 1899 Phebus 2.25hp that’s eligible for the London to Brighton Run. But perhaps no car in the auction has a story as intriguing as the black and light blue-colored “Fire Engine” special. Continue reading

Benjafield club carries on in the spirit of the Bentley Boys

Some of the cars that took part in the Yorkshire Buccaneer event | Benjafield’s Racing Club photos
Some of the cars that took part in the Yorkshire Buccaneer event | Benjafield’s Racing Club photos

The Benjafield’s Racing Club annually gathers for a one-off event, themed based on the home local of the club member who is that year’s host. This year the event was held at Jonathan Turner’s home at Bowcliffe Hall in West Sussex, England, where the theme was Yorkshire Buccaneer, complete with Yorkshire tea and Yorkshire Pudding.

Participants brought 41 pre-war cars — 25 of them Bentleys — and worth an estimated $45 million for a climb up Harewood Hill, a drive through Bramham Park, runs on the runways of an RAF base, and even laps around a go-kart track. Much of the rally was held on gravel roads. Continue reading

Grueling Peking to Paris rally readies 35-day adventure

A Bentley crosses an arid wasteland during the Peking to Paris Motor Challenge | Endurance Rally Association
A vintage Bentley crosses an arid wasteland during the Peking to Paris Motor Challenge | Endurance Rally Association

Competitors from around the world will line up for a grueling 8,500-mile, 35-day vintage-car rally starting June 12 as the sixth Peking to Paris Motor Challenge gets under way. The 110 crews will start at the Great Wall in Beijing and cross through 11 nations before reaching the finish line at the Place Vendôme in Paris on July 17. Continue reading