Dreaming in Analogue: The Second-Ever Ferrari F50 is Up For Sale
Plus four more collector cars from RM Sotheby’s Driving into Summer online auction.
With August's Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance now officially canceled, it's becoming clearer that returning to live, in-person collector car auction events is going to be next to impossible for much of 2020. RM Sotheby's has been early to experiment with online auctions, and is likely hoping it will have the process streamlined enough to weather the storm for as long as needed. The newest RM Sotheby's online auction, dubbed Driving into Summer, is hoping to attract over 80 cars, with consignments still ongoing.
The auction house's last online auction, its Palm Beach-based sale, did fairly well and RM is counting on that success continuing with this latest sale. Here are five cars that caught our eye at the auction, which begins May 21 and runs through May 28.
1978 Piaggio Ape Limos by Pavesi
Estimate: $45,000 - $60,000
Small, affordable personal vehicles have long been important in post-war Europe. The Piaggio Ape is a three-wheeled commercial vehicle that helped mobilize Italy's workforce when much of the country was wracked with economic hardship following World War II. Typically, Ape models have a truck bed or cargo area aft of the cabin, but this custom-built model was fitted with a relatively luxurious passenger compartment, designed to get its original owners from their home on the shore to their boat dock. Indeed, the rich are different from you and me.
1995 Ferrari F50
Estimate: $2,500,000 - $2,750,000
As supercars have gotten larger, heavier, and more bloated with super-advanced dynamics control systems, hybrid and turbocharged powertrains, paddle-shift gearboxes, and many of the creature comforts found in a new Mercedes S-Class, it's nice to know that cars like the Ferrari F50 still exist. Built to honor Ferrari's 50th anniversary as an automaker, the F50 was at the time the closest thing to a Ferrari Formula 1 car for the street. With a carbon-fiber monocoque, a 512-hp, 8,000-rpm 4.7-liter V-12 engine, a conventional three-pedal layout with six-speed manual gearbox, and little else (no carpets, radio or power windows here), the F50 was a pure driver's car, albeit an expensive one. This example is Classiche certified, has under 4,000 miles on the odometer and recently had a major service including changing out the fuel bladders. This is the second of 349 F50s ever built, but is the world ready to buy $2,000,000 cars online? We'll soon find out.
2012 Lucra LC470 Roadster
Estimate: $35,000 - $45,000
It looks like a blast from the past, maybe an Elva or a Ginetta. But it's not. It's a Lucra LC470 Roadster, a sports car that was handbuilt in the U.S. based on a tube frame chassis, C4 Corvette suspension, and a 430-hp, 6.2-liter GM LS3 V-8 engine paired with a Turbo 400 automatic transmission. Confused yet? This is one of three cars said to have been built for the Fast & Furious movie franchise and was delivered to production as a rolling, not driving, chassis. Today, it's ready to run with a carbon fiber body and a curb weight said to be "just over 2,000 lbs." At the estimated price, this Lucra could be a performance bargain.
1966 Autobianchi Bianchina Panoramica
Estimate: $30,000 - $40,000
Usually when we think of Autobianchis, we think of Audrey Hepburn in the film How to Steal a Million. Autobianchis were typically known as premium microcar runabouts, which well-to-do Italian city dwellers would use on shopping outings for jewelry and prosecco. This Bianchini Panoramica is even better suited for the purpose than smaller coupe and convertible models, with a wagon body style and seating for at least four. Based on a Fiat 500 D platform and a 0.5-liter air-cooled engine, this might make an excellent grocery-getter for your summer home in the Hamptons.
2017 Ford GT
Estimate: $850,000 - $950,000
We continue to see more 2017 Ford GTs hit the marketplace following the expiration of their two-year no-resale contracts and this is the latest example to come up for sale. Unlike many Ford GT buyer-speculators, this car actually had nearly 1,500 miles put on it over the past couple years, which we're happy to see, considering how great these cars are to drive. This Ford GT wears Triple Yellow paint with Lightning Blue stripes, along with blue-painted brake calipers. Options include titanium lug nuts and 20-inch carbon-fiber wheels. With a base price of about $500,000, we'll see what kind of profit this one brings its first owner.