Straight Eight Logistics will be moving cars in our enclosed transporters to and from the 2020 Race Retro Event taking place next weekend in Stoneleigh Park.
The 2020 show is set to bring together over 24,000 motorsport fans, with a spectacular turnout of racing drivers, preparers, traders and enthusiasts. Covering every discipline including formula and circuit racing, rallying, hill climbs, touring cars, single marque series, GT cars and more, join us in admiration as an unrivalled showcase of iconic cars are revealed.
Call one of our dedicated team members today for a quote to transport your vehicle for this event at your convenience.
T: 0203 540 4929
Do you require transport from any of the Paris Auctions?
We have first class transporters in Paris,
ready to transport your new purchases. Once the final gavel has gone
down we will take care of every detail for you so you can be
confident your prestigious car will be delivered with expert care, safely and
Please contact one of our dedicated team at firstname.lastname@example.org or on +44 (0) 203 540 4929 for a quotation to and/or from the show or with any other enquiries you may have about getting your vehicle to the event.
We look forward to seeing you there.
Seven magnificent vintage and historic Bugattis lead Bonhams’ ‘Les Grandes Marques du Monde’ Sale at the Grand Palais, Paris, which opens the international auction house’s European calendar on 6 February.
The septet represent the golden age of French and indeed world automotive craftsmanship, innovation and performance – and are fittingly showcased in the very venue where they were first unveiled to the world.
In pole position is one of the most important sports models of the marque’s golden era, a 1932 Bugatti Type 55, which started life as a works entry in the 24 Hours of Le Mans driven by two of the era’s most celebrated racing drivers, Louis Chiron and Count Guy Bouriat-Quintart.
One of only 29 known surviving Type 55s (of a total 38 produced), this car is noted for its striking and unique coachwork – configured as a two-seat drophead with highline doors – designed by Parisian automotive designer Giuseppe Figoni. He was commissioned by its second owner, French publishing magnate Jacques Dupuy, who entered the Bugatti in the Paris-Nice Rally and the Bois de Boulogne concours d’elegance.
This 55 is now offered for the very first time at auction, following an incredible 56 years in the ownership of one discerning British family. Estimate on request.
Lining up alongside the 55 are not one but two examples of the celebrated Type 57– considered the quintessential road-going Bugatti and the first model designed entirely under the direction of Jean Bugatti, featuring advanced engineering including a dual-overhead cam engine and an independently sprung chassis.
The first is a rare 1938 ‘Atalante’ Coupé (one of only 34 examples), regarded as the most sporting derivative of the car, styled by Jean Bugatti himself. This example is finished in rakish period two-tone black and purple paintwork and has an estimate of €1,500,000 – 1,800,000. A similar 1935 Atalante, from the collection of the late Barry Burnett, was successfully sold last year by Bonhams at the Goodwood Revival Sale, achieving a final total of €1,693,594 (£1,499,000).
The Atalante’s sale sibling in Paris is a beautiful supercharged 1939 Type 57C ‘Stelvio‘ cabriolet, named after the legendary Alpine pass in Italy, of which only 40 examples were delivered. With coachwork by Gangloff, this was one of the last Bugattis sold before the Second World War and the personal car of Georges Groslambert, prominent industrialist, Bugatti dealer and marque enthusiast.
The story is that Stelvio was hidden during the war in one of the Groslambert factories but re-emerged in peacetime to enter the 1949 Rallye de Franche-Comté with its enthusiast owner. The car has only had two further owners, covering some 45,000 km in its lifetime. Estimate €1,350,000 – 1,650,000.
The fourth Bugatti flying the French flag is a 1925 Type 39 Grand prix Racing Two-Seater – identical to the most successful racing car ever, the Type 35, but fitted with a smaller 1.5 litre engine to comply with 1925’s new racing regulations.
In its debut race, the 1925 Grand Prix de Tourisme, the ex-works car finished third, achieving the same result in that year’s Italian Gran Premio in Monza, while finishing 7thoverall in the Italian Grand Prix. Its finest hour came six years later and 16,000 km away as winner of the 1931 Australian Grand Prix. This car has been more recently exercised on hill climbs and is eligible for the most prestigious international historic race meetings. Estimate: €1,050,000 – 1,400,000.
The other Bugattis to grace the Grand Palais are: a highly original 1922 Type 23, estimate €500,000 – 600,000; a 1927 Type 40 ‘Grand Sport’ Tourer, first owned by a friend of Jean Bugatti, (estimate €350,000 – 450,000); and the first Molsheim-built model, a Type 13 Sports, estimate €190,000 – 240,000.
The Bonhams Grand Palais Sale is renowned for showcasing pre-war Grand Marques and this year’s edition offers the finest of the era including the supercar of the 1930s, a 1935 Mercedes Benz 500K Cabriolet A. Designed by the in-house coachworks Sindelfingen and engineered by Hans Nibel, who created the chassis for the first legendary ‘Sliver Arrows’ racing cars, only 31 Cabriolets were built.
This example was delivered new to the celebrated French film actor of the era, Henri Garat. In the 50-year ownership of its most recent custodian, the 500K has benefitted from a comprehensive restoration. Estimate is €1,500,000 – 2,000,000.
Lining up with the 500K is a trio of sports cars, which are all eligible for the most prestigious historic races and concours:
A 1931 Invicta 4.5 litre S-Type Low Chassis Sports with unique ‘sport cabriolet’ coachwork by Carbodies and the nickname ‘Scout’ which has campaigned at the Le Mans Classic (estimate €1,200,000 – 1,500,000).
A 1935 Delage D8S cabriolet, with special coachwork by the ’master’ of coachbuilding, Henri Chapron, (estimate €800,000 – 1,200,000) and a 1934 Talbot AV105 Brooklands Sports Racer, victor at the celebrated Brooklands circuit in the hands of noted racer Dr Roth and the Talbot’s ace’ works driver WM ‘Mike’ Couper. More recently, the Talbot has campaigned successfully at the 2012 Le Mans Classic and was the overall winner of the 2013 Flying Scotsman Rally. Estimate €800,000 – 1,100,000.
Approximately 100 lots representing nearly 100 years of motoring history from Edwardian elegance to 21st century supercars will be in the spotlight at the Grand Palais, available to view on Wednesday 5 February (9am to 5pm) and from 9am on sale day, Thursday 6, with the auction starting at 2.00pm.
For more information visit: bonhams.com/grandpalais.
One of only nine examples produced sold for £2.4 million
An ultra-rare 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Lightweight, first owned by renowned hill climb competitor Phil Scragg, was the top lot in Saturday’s Bonhams Bond Street Sale achieving £2,367,000, at the auction house’s final motor car sale of the year, held before a full house at its Mayfair saleroom.
The DB4GT, one of only nine examples completed to special Lightweight specification by Aston Martin, and offered to the market for the first time in more than 50 years, was the subject of lively bidding between prospective buyers in the room and on the telephone before being sold to an overseas collector.
A 2016 Ferrari F12tdf Berlinetta belonging to Jay Kay, lead singer of Jamiroquai and avid car collector, was another hit, selling for £605,000. It was ordered new from Maranello by the singer to his specification of grigio ferro’ paintwork with black racing stripe, and had covered a mere 1,600 miles since.
Fellow Ferraris also sold well, with a 2001 550 GTZ Barchetta, the sole right-hand drive version of just three Zagato-bodied cars, achieved £575,000, while a second F12tdf, a 2017 70th anniversary edition – again the only right-hand drive example and one of just five ‘Scagliettis’ – realised £339,250.
Another Aston Martins proving popular with bidders was the 1994 Virage Volante 6.3-Litre. Delivered new to HRH The Prince of Wales, who drove it for 23 years, and built to his bespoke specification, the car was secured for the princely sum of £235,750.
- 1988 Aston Martin V8 Vantage X-Pack Sports saloon sold for £324,300.
- 2009 Aston Martin DBS Coupé, which had covered fewer than 3,000 miles from new, realised£112,700.
Tim Schofield, Head of Bonhams Motoring UK,said: “We are honoured to have sold this, one of the ‘Holy Grail’ Aston Martins at our Bond Street Sale. The auction attracted a spirited audience of bidders, collectors and enthusiasts and was a finale to another busy year for the Bonhams motoring team.”
Trio of Rare Supercars Offered from Jamiroquai Singer’s Collection
A trio of rare and coveted motor cars – owned by Jay Kay, lead singer of Jamiroquai and avid collector of classic and supercars, are offered in Bonhams Bond Street Sale in London on 7 December 2019. They lead a host of other celebrity cars, including those once owned by 1930s socialite Barbara Hutton, jazz musician Jools Holland and HRH The Prince of Wales, adding extra stardust to the glittering finale of the Bonhams 2019 motor car auction calendar.
Jay Kay, a renowned petrolhead, who has owned over 100 different cars since buying his first, a classic BMW 1602, is now parting with a 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7-Litre ‘Lightweight’ Coupé (estimate £750,000 – 850,000), a 2004 Porsche Carrera GT (estimate £650,000 – 750,000) and, reflecting the singer’s love of Maranello cars, a 2016 Ferrari F12tdf Berlinetta (estimate £670,000 – 740,000).
Tim Schofield, Head of Bonhams Motoring UK,said: “These cars are the best of the best, representing rarity and quality, and reflect Jay Kay’s keen eye as a connoisseur of collectors’ motor cars. Individually, or as a trio, they will make a fantastic addition to any serious modern classic car collection.”
The 1970s classic Carrera RS is one of only 200 Lightweight versions produced; as the name suggests, these were built for the track, with a lighter chassis and pared down interiors.
This authentic matching numbers (engine and chassis) example, finished in striking tangerine paintwork, was originally owned by a German collector and friend of the Porsche family, who oversaw an engine rebuild by Porsche Racing. The Lightweight has been in Jay Kay’s collection since 2008, during which time it has only covered 1000 kms.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/14/
2004 Porsche Carrera GT: the marque’s supercar for the ‘noughties’, was inspired by Porsche’s win at Le Mans with the 911 GT1 in 1998. With its carbon monocoque chassis and racing-derived 5.7 litre V10 engine producing 610bhp, the GT is capable of a 200mph top speed, with a rear wing which rises automatically at 75mph, for high-speed stability on track.
One of just 1,270 produced, this millennial Carrera has been in the ownership of private collectors, including Jay Kay, from new.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/16/
Another limited-edition supercar, (just 799 were ever built), the 2016 F12tdf Berlinetta was ordered from Maranello by the singer to his specification of grigio ferro’ paintwork with black racing stripe– and has driven a mere 1,600 miles since new.
Powered by a 6.3 litre V12 engine, which is considered one of the all-time greats, with a top speed of 211mph and 0-62mph acceleration in 3.1 seconds, the F12tdf was the fastest road-going Ferrari of its time, combining the best of Italian automotive talents, with an aluminium spaceframe chassis by Carrozzeria Scaglietti and styling by Ferrari Style Centre and Pininfarina.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/15/
Another motor car offered by a fellow musician – is the 1964 Bentley S3 two-door convertible of Jools Holland OBE, DL, (estimate £110,000 – 120,000).
A unique high-quality Mulliner-style conversion, this motor car is finished in Mason’s Black with contrasting tan leather interior. Its luxury specification includes air-conditioning, electric windows and picnic tables to the rear of the front seats. Used sparingly in recent years, the Bentley has covered 58,000 miles from new.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/15/
Other ‘star cars’ of the Bonhams Bond Street Sale include:
1935 Auburn 851 Supercharged Boattail Speedster (estimate £650,000 – 750,00)
First owned by ‘poor little rich girl’ Barbara Hutton, the Woolworth heiress and socialite, who purchased it for her first husband, Prince Alexis Mdivani.
The Speedster was considered a supercar of its day, with its performance being tested and proven on the Bonneville Salt Flats where it set numerous speed records. Each car came with a guarantee that it had been road tested at 100mph.
The Auburn was also the car of choice of Hollywood. Fittingly this example underwent a movie-star style ‘nip and tuck’ overseen by its second owner, motion picture publicist Alan Gordon, before being used for movie premieres and parties, chauffeuring such passengers as Lana Turner.
Bohman and Schwartz, coachbuilders to Hollywood’s elite and known for their exotic streamlined creations, modified the Speedster, with pontoon fenders, contoured rear taillights and a ‘heart-shape’ grille.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/19/
1994 Aston Martin Virage Volante 6.3-Litre (estimate £225,000 – 275,000).
Delivered new to HRH The Prince of Wales who drove it for 23 years, the Volante was built to his bespoke specification – fitted with discreet ‘standard’ Virage bodywork (rather than the wider bodywork and flared wheel arches of other 6.3 litre versions) and finished in British Racing Green.
The mushroom leather interior also includes a container in the centre armrest for the polo ponies sugar cubes. Being offered by its third owner, the Volante has covered fewer than 35,000 miles since new.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/6/
Other highlights include motor cars that are stars in their own right, enjoying worldwide attention and renown:
Designed by Vittoria Jano, who was responsible for the Grand Prix-dominating P2 racing car, the 1750 was the supercar of the 20s and 30s, popular as a sports car and a racetrack campaigner.
1929 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Supercharged Super Sport Spider with coachwork by Zagato, (estimate £800,000 – 1,200,000).
The Supercharged Super Sport edition was aimed at the era’s gentlemen racing drivers and was victorious in the Mille Miglia – the 6C 1750 SS not only won the 1929 edition for the second consecutive year but took six of the top ten places.
Produced in the same year, this right-hand drive example was also campaigned in the early editions of the revived Mille Miglia. It is now offered on the open market for the first time in 60 years, after being owned and cared for by known Alfa Romeo aficionado, the late Michael Hirst.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/4/
1939 Frazer Nash-BMW 328 (estimate £650,000 – 850,000)
A rare UK-edition (one of 48) of the first truly modern sports car which featured a ground-breaking ‘sporting’ chassis (combining lightness and stiffness in equal measure) and 2-ltre engine producing 80 bhp, a remarkable output for the time.
Like the Alfa, the 328 lightweight racing versions also enjoyed great success in endurance races such as the Mille Miglia, Le Mans 24 Hours and Spa 24 Hours.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/11/
Coming up to date, the final showstopper is a 2016 Bugatti Veyron EB 16.4 Coupé. Named after the French racing driver Pierre Veyron, who won the 1939 Le Mans 24 Hour race for the celebrated marque, the model set the benchmark for supercars at its 2005 launch.
Combining racing car performance thanks to its 1000bhp hand-built engine, (maximum speed of more than 250mph and acceleration from 0-62mph in 2.5 seconds) with a luxury package, it was, at the time, the world’s most expensive car.
This example, the 15thcar of just 450, was the first to be UK-registered and was displayed at the 2006 Goodwood Festival of Speed. It has covered just 16,270 kms from new. Estimate £850,000 – 1,250,000.
Further details: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502/lot/35/
An ultra-rare 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT ‘Lightweight’ – one of only nine examples completed to the special Lightweight specification by Aston Martin – first owned by renowned hill climb competitor Phil Scragg, is to be offered in next month’s Bonhams Bond Street Sale (Saturday 7 December) at NO RESERVE, with an estimate of £2,000,000 to 3,000,000.
In the hands of only its third owner since 1965, this example is offered to the global car collectors’ market with a full, known ownership history and the kudos of being one of the ultra-rare Lightweights built for competition and road use.
If the DB4 was considered the ultimate Gran Turismo of its day, marrying state-of-the-art British engineering with Italian flair in the form of its Carrozzeria Touring aluminium body, the 200lbs lighter racing GT version was the crème de la crème, of which only 45 right-hand drive versions were produced.
Modified with a shorter wheelbase, a luggage platform instead of rear seats, lighter 18-gauge bodywork and lightweight Borrani wire wheels and its twin spark engine tuned to produce over 300bhp, the DB4GT achieved a top speed of 153mph, a 0-60mph acceleration in 6.1 seconds and was also the first car to go from a standstill to 100mph and stop in under 20 seconds.
Sanctioned by John Wyer, Aston Martin’s acclaimed team manager, in 1960, the competition Lightweight made its mark in international racing in the hands of Stirling Moss with Equipe Endeavour, Jim Clark, Innes Ireland and Roy Salvadori with Essex Racing and German circuit driver and Aston Martin importer Peter Lindner. This was the ultimate Touring bodied DB4GT and remains both elusive and revered.
The handful of special ‘Lightweight’ versions were built outside the main production line at Newport Pagnell, with their even greater lightness achieved by extensive use of aluminium in the chassis which was also drilled front and rear. Perspex was used everywhere except the screen, and the trim was lightened.
This example is finished in ‘Elusive Blue’ having been originally one of the two cars delivered in ‘Wedgewood Blue’. Incredibly the black Connolly trim and carpets are original as are the lightweight interior trim panels.
With the GT being such a respected racing car in its day, it is fitting that this car was first owned by another gentleman racer of the period, Phil Scragg, a prosperous Northern industrialist, car collector and noted hill climber, who successfully campaigned it, with a specially-lowered axle ratio, at venues including Loton Park, Aintree and Prescott in 1961.
Benefitting from an engine rebuild carried out by Aston Martin Works Service, including a conversion to 4.2 -litre capacity in 2007, this very special DB4GT is eligible for the most prestigious historic motoring events around the world.
According to Aston Martin authority Stephen Archer: “This is an opportunity that cannot be repeated. For such an extremely rare car to have had just three owners and the last for 55 years is extraordinary enough. But the originality of this car is breath-taking. This has to be one of the greatest preservation opportunities of the century. There are not many Astons today where you can still see the maker’s hand in every aspect of the car.
“This DB4GT deserves a very appreciative and sympathetic home because it will give the owner enormous satisfaction. The DB4GT was one of David Brown’s greatest cars, this is one of just nine at the very pinnacle of that achievement.
Sholto Gilbertson, Bonhams Motor Cars Department Director UK, added: “The Bonhams motoring team is thrilled to be offering one of the ‘Holy Grail’ Aston Martins. We are delighted that our consistent track record of achieving good results for the marque has led to the consignment of this important motor car.”
The DB4 GT will be available to view in the Bonhams’ flagship Sale Room in New Bond Street, on Friday 6 and Saturday 7 December, the day of the Bond Street Sale.
Link to sale: https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/25502.
|The Bond Street Sale|
|Bonhams, 101 New Bond Street, London|
|7 December 2019|
IMPORTANT PIONEER MOTOR CAR ‘PAPILLON BLUE’ TOPS BONHAMS LONDON TO BRIGHTON SALE
One of the most important automotive pioneers, a 1901 Panhard-Levassor 7hp Twin-Cyclinder Four Seater Rear Entrance Tonneau known as ‘Le Papillon Bleu’, which introduced many motoring ‘firsts’, claimed a runway first place in yesterday’s Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run Sale, selling as the top lot for an impressive £442,750.00 – double its pre-sale estimate.
‘Le Papillon Bleu’ was the subject of a tense three-way bid between two telephone bidders and a collector in the packed saleroom with the hammer finally falling in favour of the latter, in a sale which achieved an impressive 95 per cent sale rate.
Built by one of the earliest motor manufacturers, the Panhard-Levassor is considered as the first ‘modern motor car’, featuring a front engine, ‘gearbox’ transmission, ‘piano-style’ pedals for the clutch and brake and a steering wheel rather than tiller.
One of only five known surviving 1901 7hp examples, this Panhard-Levassor was also one of the few ‘named’ cars. The young daughter of its second owner called it ‘Papillon Blue’ due to its striking Cambridge Blue paintwork, commissioned by its first owner René de Knyff, pioneer racing driver and Panhard director who was also the President of the Commission Sportive International, the present-day FIA.
Another pioneer that sold well was a 1900 M.M.C. Tourer, which achieved £224,250. This example of the short-lived British marque, powered by a 1,527cc Daimler engine, has participated in numerous Runs from the 1930s to the present day.
Other stars of the Bonhams sale room included, fittingly, two examples of the rare ‘Star’ marque, one of Britain’s top six pre-First World War motor manufacturers. The first – one of the oldest motor cars to cross the block today, was an 1899 Star Benz 3 ½ HP Vis-à-Vis, powered by an engine designed by Carl Benz, which far surpassed its £70,000 pre-sale estimateto sell for £138,000.
A sister Star 3 ½hp Single-cylinder Vis-à-Visalso bettered its top estimate, exchanging hands for £94,300.
Another notable lot which gave a strong performance was a stunning 1899 Peugeot2 ¼ hp Tricycle, selling for £69,000, again beating its top estimate.
The sale’s earlier automobilia auction, which also enjoyed a ‘full house’ of Veteran car owners and enthusiasts, also achieved impressive results, with a rare 1903 Gordon Bennett Cup Race Presentation Pocket Watch presented to a Dr Frank Husband, a steward at that year’s race, selling for £8,187, double its pre-sale estimate.
Tim Schofield, Head of Bonhams Motoring UK said: “The London to Brighton Veteran Car Run Sale is one of the Bonhams Motoring Team’s highlights of the year.
“The Run embodies the true spirit of motoring and it is rewarding to see from this sale’s results that the passion and enthusiasm for pioneer motor cars is as strong as ever. We are particularly pleased that the Papillon Bleu and the M.M.C. performed so well.
“We now look forward to Sunday’s Run, which many of the team are taking part in, and to seeing other Veteran motor cars sold at Bonhams over the years cross the finish line at Madeira Drive in Brighton.”
The next sale for Bonhams Motoring UK is The RAF Museum Sale in Hendon on 21 November 2019.
On Saturday 7th September Caroline Martin from our shipping department will be participating in the Wye Valley Mighty Hike to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support!
Caroline will be walking 26.6 miles in one day! She has been training very hard and is now just hoping there won’t be too many blisters!
BMW 507 OWNED BY THE CAR’S DESIGNER VON GOERTZ STARS AT BONHAMS BOND STREET SALE
The BMW 507 owned by the designer of the legendary model, Count Albrecht Graf von Goertz, is to be offered at Bonhams annual Bond Street Sale on 1 December. The 1958 Series II example is one of only 252 built and is expected to achieve between £2,100,000 and £2,200,000.
The model is recognised as one of the most elegant cars ever created and was BMW’s answer to the legendary 300SL created by its rival marque, Mercedes-Benz. The 507 was a model driven by some of the biggest stars and important leaders of the time, including Elvis Presley, John Surtees, Ursula Andress, Prince Rainier of Monaco and the Aga Khan.
This example was bought by Count Albrecht Graf von Goertz, a German designer living in New York who had designed everything from furniture to fountain pens – but never a car. The 507 was his first automotive design, and was met with great acclaim. It was bought by von Goertz in 1971 and he owned it for more than a decade. It was extensively restored in 1990 and is in excellent condition.
The sale on 1 December is set to be one of Bonhams best yet, with highlights including:
- The ex-David Coulthard/David Brabham, Le Mans 24-Hour race, GT class-winning 1993 Jaguar XJ220C Competition coupé (£2,200,000-2,800,000)
- The 1959 Lister-Jaguar ‘Knobbly’ 3.8-Litre Sports-Racing Two-Seater (£2,200,000-2,800,000)
- The ex-Martin Brundle, V12-engined, 1985 Jaguar XJR6 Group C Racing Coupé (£2,200,000-2,800,000)
- 1966 Aston Martin DB6 4.2-Litre Short Chassis Volante (£1,400,000-1,600,000)
- 1966 Ferrari 500 Superfast Series II Coupe (£1,300,000-1,400,000)
- 1937 Lagonda LG45 Rapide Tourer (£750,000-850,000)
EXQUISITE VAUXHALL 30-98 OWNED BY THE LAST MAHARAJAH OF KASHMIR OFFERED AT BONHAMS
1924 Vauxhall 30-98 OE Velox Tourer (£330,000-390,000)
A 1924 Vauxhall 30-98 OE Velox Tourer, recognised by many as the finest British sports car of the vintage era, originally owned by Hari Singh, the last Maharajah of Kashmir, is one of the highlights of Bonhams annual Bond Street Sale on 2 December. It will be transported by Straight Eight Logistics to be put on display at 101 New Bond Street on Thursday 1 and Friday 2 November.
The car is an incredibly special example of its kind, as the Maharajah – a particular and exacting ruler – wanted it to be as symmetrical as possible. He ordered an extra handbrake on the passenger’s side, a door on the passenger’s side (non-standard) and a split windscreen, though he drew the line at two steering wheels. The car passed through several important owners in India, Pakistan, the USA and the UK, including the legendary car collector and master watchmaker George Daniels and Ed Roy, an influential Bostonian in the motoring world and president of the Vintage Sports-Car Club of America.
Hari Singh is one of the most important figures of Kashmiri history and is known as both a highly progressive ruler and the man who sparked the first Indo-Pakistan war. After a ‘colourful’ youth – he was once forced to pay nearly £300,000 to a Parisian courtesan as blackmail – he acceded to the throne of Jammu and Kashmir in 1925 and made quick changes to laws that he considered outdated and cruel. He made primary education compulsory, outlawed child marriage and allowed all lower castes access to places of worship.
When British rule came to an end in 1947, the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir had the unusual option to join either Pakistan or India, or remain independent. In an attempt to maintain independence and power for as long as possible, Singh tried to play India and Pakistan off against each other, resulting in widespread protests. Rulers of states such as Kashmir were expected to respect the general wishes of their population, but Singh, a Hindu, leant towards India in spite of Kashmir’s Muslim majority. Pashtun tribesmen from Pakistan invaded Kashmir and defeated Singh’s forces in an attempt to seize the state during this period of uncertainty, prompting Singh to appeal to Prime Minister Nehru for help. Nehru agreed, but only on the condition that Singh would accede to India. To avoid further bloody conflict, Singh reluctantly obeyed.
Sholto Gilbertson, Department Director, commented: ‘This is the finest 30-98 ever offered by Bonhams, and its rare aluminium body and extraordinary specification makes it one of the most important examples in existence. Its fascinating history only adds to the significance of this motor car, and we look forward to offering it at our Bond Street sale.’