Auction Preview: Bonhams Quail Lodge 2017

Highlighted by the $4 million sale of a Bugatti Type 51 Grand Prix car, Bonhams achieved $34.8 million in total sales at last year’s Quail Lodge auction. Next week, Bonhams could surpass that total with only a handful of its star consignments. Although nothing in the auction comes close to the $38 million Ferrari GTO the company sold in 2014, there are lots of phenomenal, seldom-seen high-dollar cars on offer this year, including several rally greats. Here are 10 that we’ll be keeping an eye on:

1956 Maserati 300S
Presale estimate: $6,000,000 - $7,000,000
Hagerty Price Guide: N/A
Lot 38

1956 Maserati 300S

The six-cylinder Maserati 300S was one of Sir Stirling Moss’s very favorite cars to drive, and his favorite driver was former teammate and rival Juan Manuel Fangio, so what better car to have for vintage racing than an ex-Fangio 300S? This car won the Grand Prix of Portugal and then the Grand Prix of Brazil in 1957, and after Fangio drove it, it was a competitive in South America for many years. It has since been restored.

1963 Jaguar E-Type Lightweight
Presale estimate: N/A
Hagerty Price Guide: $4,400,000 - $7,000,000
Lot 52

1963 Jaguar E-Type Lightweight

The E-Type Lightweight was an altogether different car from the standard XKE with aluminum bodywork and Lucas fuel-fuel injection, 5-speed ZF gearbox, and dry sump lubrication. In the days of the Ferrari 250 GTO and Shelby Cobra, the E-Type wasn’t all that competitive on the international level, but in terms of E-Types the Lightweight is pretty much the Holy Grail, since only a dozen were built. Bonhams sold another one earlier this year in Scottsdale for $7.4 million, but this one is arguably a more desirable example. Although it didn’t have much success on track, it was part of the famous Briggs Cunningham team, which campaigned three of the Lightweight cars.

1995 McLaren F1
Presale estimate: N/A
Hagerty Price Guide: $10,400,000 - $14,500,000
Lot 73

1995 McLaren F1

From a collector’s standpoint, the McLaren F1 is the Ferrari 250 GTO of our time. It’s extremely rare, widely regarded as the best car of its era, and almost never seen for sale. This one is actually offered from its first owner, a New England car dealer who took delivery in England and then did a European road trip in it. It is also the first McLaren F1 imported to the U.S., and is an eight-figure car that has a real chance of being the top sale of the week.

1986 Ford RS 200 Evolution
Presale estimate: $500,000 - $600,000
Hagerty Price Guide: N/A
Lot 18

1986 Ford RS 200 Evolution

The Ford RS200 was a bit late to the party during the Group B era of the World Rally Championship and never won the title, it became a common sight in the European Rallycross Championship and the hotter 600-hp Evolution version for the road was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the fastest accelerating production car for years. Although just 24 examples were built, two others have sold recently. One went for $539,000 at Gooding’s Pebble Beach sale in 2015 and another went for $522,500 at Amelia Island last year, so it’s safe to say that a half-million dollars is about the going rate for one of these cars.

1985 Audi Sport Quattro S1
Presale estimate: $450,000 - $550,000
Hagerty Price Guide: $242,000 - $460,000
Lot 23

1985 Audi Sport Quattro S1

The Audi Quattro was hugely important in that it brought all-wheel-drive technology to rallying, which has been integral to the sport ever since. It was as radical a change as Cooper introducing mid-engine cars to Formula One. The Quattro also came about during the Group B era, so it was an absolute monster in terms of performance. Just 200 road-going examples of this shortened and lightened version of the Quattro were made to homologate it for Group B. The last one to sell at auction was at the RM Sotheby’s London sale last year for $533,500.

1985 Peugeot 205 Turbo 16
Presale estimate: $225,000 - $275,000
Hagerty Price Guide: N/A
Lot 44

1985 Peugeot 205 Turbo 16

The Audi Quattro may be the more famous and celebrated car of the Group B era, but the Peugeot 205 was actually most successful in terms of wins and championship titles. A total of 200 examples had to be built for homologation, and while Renault went on to put its R5 Turbo into series production, Peugeot kept its own mid-engine hot hatch limited to the required 200 units. All 200 of the road cars were painted the same color and left-hand drive configuration. This one has just over 1,000 kilometers on the odometer.

1985 Lancia Delta S4 Stradale
Presale estimate: $350,000 - $450,000
Hagerty Price Guide: N/A
Lot 46

1985 Lancia Delta S4 Stradale

Lancia rally greats are in full force at the Quail Lodge sale this year, with both a Stratos HF and an 037 on offer. The Delta S4, though, is in its own league among Lancias in terms of technology. In addition to being all-wheel drive to take on the Audi Quattro, Lancia engineers also combatted the lag in power delivery that plagued turbocharged cars at the time by fitting a supercharger to aid in low-end power delivery, creating the first “twin-charge” system. A total of 200 detuned road-going examples were sold at high prices to customers to homologate the S4 for Group B, and this one is a one-owner car with 8,900 kilometers on the odometer. Another one of the 200 sold for $582,000 at the RM Sotheby’s Villa Erba sale back in May.

1980 Ferrari 312 T5 F1 Car
Presale estimate: N/A
Hagerty Price Guide: N/A
Lot 45

1980 Ferrari 312 T5 F1 Car

The 1970s were good times for Ferrari’s Grand Prix program. With four Constructors’ Championships and three Drivers’ Championships for Scuderia Ferrari, the team tied Lotus as the dominant manufacturer of the decade. The picture at the start of the 1980s wasn’t quite as rosy. Jody Scheckter won the title in 1979, but he didn’t have a single podium finish in 1980, and neither did teammate Gilles Villeneuve. While this wasn’t a particularly successful car, it’s the most developed version of the famous 312 T series, has over 500 horsepower from a screaming 180-degree V-12, was driven by a World Championship winner, and would be accepted into many of the world’s great historic racing events.

1956 Maserati A6G/54 Gran Sport Spider by Frua
Presale estimate: $3,200,000 – $3,600,000
Hagerty Price Guide: N/A
Lot 61

1956 Maserati A6G/54 Gran Sport Spider by Frua

Back in the 1950s, Maserati was still a fairly boutique manufacturer focused on racing, and building road cars was still a fairly small-scale affair, so street-legal Maseratis of this period are pretty special. This one is the prototype of the Frua-bodied Spider version of the A6G/54, and that series only produced nine cars. It has since been restored and was displayed at both Villa d’Este and the Museo Enzo Ferrari in Modena.

1958 Ferrari 250 GT TdF Alloy Berlinetta
Presale estimate: N/A
Hagerty Price Guide: $9,000,000 - $10,500,000
Lot 85

1958 Ferrari 250 GT TdF Alloy Berlinetta

Just 77 Ferrari 250 Tour de France (TdF) Berlinettas were built, and a lot of them have an enviable race history, which is why top-notch examples can carry an eight-figure price tag. This one was initially campaigned to some success in Italy before having further success in both France and North Africa, but it was in a road accident before the chassis and engine were separated, and the body was cut up and laid onto another car. Therefore, it doesn’t have a squeaky clean history, but many old race cars don’t. It has since all been put back together, and the car has Ferrari Classiche certification, which should be enough to satisfy cautious bidders.