Super rare Aston Martin make over 500,000 AT H&H's inaugural Harrogate Auction

26.04.2008: Super rare Aston Martin make over 500,000 AT H&H's inaugural Harrogate Auction

Despite the doom and gloom pervading the current economic climate, H&H enjoyed a notably successful sale on its first visit to Harrogate.

Auction goers old and new were bowled over by the Harrogate International Centre's spacious indoor exhibition facilities. Newly refurbished (but not yet open to the general public), the adjoining Royal Hall had its floor area decorated with automobilia and its VIP boxes filled with racing motorcycles. With its towering ceiling, gilt-laden mouldings and classical tableau paintings, this truly magnificent 'saleroom' played host to visitors from throughout the British Isles and Europe, as well as others from South Africa and Japan.

Perhaps understandably - given its rarity and importance within the canon of Aston Martin models - the DB6 Short Chassis Volant (one of 37) attracted international interest. A presentable but by no means concours car, it sold to Europe for a new auction world record price of 324,500.

Not quite as scarce as its open-topped sibling, the 1962 Aston Martin DB4 Series IV Vantage (one of 45) had undergone a sympathetic and well-executed restoration. Simply stunning 'in the metal', the grand tourer boasted an enlarged engine capacity and close-ratio gears. A sophisticated alternative to the ubiquitous DB5, it was bought by an American collector for 209,000.

Although these two Astons hogged the limelight, by taking some 533,500 between them, the sale witnessed a number of strong results throughout.

Highlight among the prewar cars was the delightfully patinated 1937 Lagonda LG45 Drophead Coupe. Entered by a Northern Irish collector, it was sold to a European enthusiast for 88,000.

Hailing from the same Lincolnshire stable, the 1926 Delage DI Tourer and 1935 Railton Eight Saloon commanded 18,150 and 17,600 respectively. All four of the catalogued Bentleys changed hands, with the highest price going to the 1951/69 Bentley MkVI Turbocharged Special at 27,500. The 1937 4.25 Litre Saloon (24,750), 1988 Mulsanne S (15,675) and the dilapidated 1956 Bentley S1 Freestone & Webb Saloon (10,780) were keenly contested, too.

Another restoration project - bearing the highly appropriate registration number XKA1 - the 1956 Jaguar XK140 Roadster comfortably exceeded its high estimate to fetch 31,900.

Pleasingly, the three cars consigned from the Yorkshire Motor Museum all found new owners, with the delightful 1923 Wolseley 10HP '200 Mile Race' Recreation recording 25,300, the 2003 Jaguar XKR Coupe 18,700 and the 1970 Triumph TR6 10,175.

With the motorcycle section crammed full of racing machinery, including four ex-works bikes, department head George Beale knew the chances of a 100 percent sales rate were slim (although he did achieve this for the road bike entries). Nevertheless, the highly-strung thoroughbreds which did change hands made respectable prices, including a Suzuki RG500 Mk2 (12,650), Triumph Trident (12,650) and Honda RS250 (8,000).

The highest price achieved in the automobilia section was 2,025 for a well-restored Austin J40 pedal car, while a Nash "Authorised Service" enamel sign (1,406), a Gilbert & Barker hand-operated petrol pump (731) and Louis Stanley's BRDC car badge (618) also performed strongly.


H&H will be travelling to another new venue for its next sale on 8 June 2008. Situated just minutes from Guildford town centre, Loseley House was built at the instruction of Queen Elizabeth I in 1562, and was visited by Her Majesty several times thereafter.

Within easy reach of the M25 motorway, Guildford mainline railway station (just 30mins from London Waterloo) and Heathrow and Gatwick airports, the imposing manor house and its landscaped grounds are the perfect setting for an example of that most aristocratic of marques, Bugatti.

Supplied new to Swiss agent Bucar SA and clothed by Carrosserie Graber, chassis 57443 has been in the current Dutch ownership since 1962. Believed but not warranted to be a one-off, its sports saloon coachwork boasts 'pillarless' construction, concealed rear door handles & hinges and sculpted swage lines. Still retaining its original leather upholstery, the Type 57 is offered for sale in unrestored condition and carries a saleroom estimate of 100,000 - 120,000.


H&H Auctions Ltd


- Colin Wilson -


26.04.2008 / MaP

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