24 January 2014

Five Of The Oddest Cars That Crossed The Block At The Scottsdale Auctions

Six big collector car auctions concluded last weekend in Scottsdale, Ariz. While the extravaganza was anchored by the massive 1,400-car Barrett-Jackson sale, five other sales took place around the same time, all within a 40-mile radius. In addition to the usual American muscle cars, some interesting British and Euro oddballs crossed the block. Here were five of our favourites:

  1. 1953 Mochet Micro Panel Truck – This tiny lorry was built in France by George Mochet, the inventor of the rather obnoxious recumbent bike. It’s powered by a 125cc motorcycle engine, which means that the new owner won’t be hauling anything much heavier than a couple of baguettes and a croissant or two. It sold for £18,000 at Barrett-Jackson.
  2. 1989 Laforza – This was the 5.0-litre Ford V-8 version of the Rayton-Fissore Magnum 4X4. It was essentially an Italian Range Rover copy. Exceedingly rare anywhere on the planet, what this odd all-wheel-drive beast was doing in sunny Arizona was anyone’s guess. It sold at Russo and Steele for £8,700.
  3. 1967 Wolseley Limousine – According to the information supplied by the auction company, this car was converted by R. Nicholson Coachbuilders in Halifax, most likely for the funeral trade. It was actually quite well presented and sold for just £7,000. Again, how the hell it got to the U.S. and what it was doing there is a giant mystery.
  4. 1971 Pinzgauer 712M – This SIX-wheel-drive Austrian military vehicle built by Steyr-Daimler-Puch was rather a sight to behold, tucked under a tent next to an Alfa Romeo Spider looking like it fancied the idea of squashing said Alfa. Again, the all-weather capable Pinzgauer is just the thing for Phoenix, Arizona, where the average January temperature hovers around 70 degrees Fahrenheit.  It failed to sell on a high bid of £14,500.
  5. 1983 Aston Martin Lagonda – A rather eccentric-looking car, when Lagondas broke they broke bad. Quad-cam Aston Martin V-8s aren’t easy to fix (and we’re guessing that something seriously let go on the inside of this one’s original engine), nor are the Pong-era cathode-ray-tube dash displays easy to deal with when they give off the black screen of death.  So why not make one of the world’s most unique customs? This one sported shiny chrome wheels, pearlescent white paint and a Corvette 5.7-litre motor. Went for £34,300 at Russo and Steele.

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