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Welcome to our latest news page. Here we'll be discussing what's new in the classic car industry.

  • Merry Christmas

    by Garry Shortt | Dec 24, 2014



  • Classic Chrome celebrate 25 years!

    by Garry Shortt | Dec 11, 2014

  • Treasure trove of 60 barn-finds includes ‘lost’ Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

    by Garry Shortt | Dec 5, 2014


    Exclusive: Treasure trove of 60 barn-finds includes ‘lost’ Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

    05 December 2014

    “Never again, anywhere in the world, will such a treasure be unearthed,” says Pierre Novikoff, motor car specialist at Artcurial auction house. He’s describing a staggering collection of 60 barn-find cars that have been discovered after lying hidden for 50 years.

    And if you think he’s exaggerating, then let me quote our photographer, Rémi Dargegen, who reported back to us right after the photo-shoot, saying, “It’s amazing, just amazing. The place is incredible… the most impressive thing is the sheer quantity of cars hidden in the barns.”

    Amazing, just amazing

    It all began with the grandfather of the family that currently owns the collection: back in the 1950s, he dreamed of conserving the heritage of pre-War cars in museum surroundings, focusing on the great French brands and famous body shops. This gentleman was an entrepreneur with a transport company in the west of France and he was a serious enthusiast: he even exhibited a roadster that he’d built himself at the Paris Motor Show in the 1950s. Sadly, during the 1970s, his dream fell apart when his business suffered a setback and he was forced to sell some 50 cars. After that, the rest of the collection stayed totally untouched, all these years, until its very recent discovery.

    Only the most famous brands, the most admired coachbuilders

    These motor cars, explains Artcurial, have been tucked away in various outbuildings and left under makeshift corrugated iron shelters – cars that include Bugatti, Hispano-Suiza, Panhard et Levassor, Delahaye, Delage, Maserati and Ferrari. There are several Talbot-Lago T26s buried in the collection, one of them a very rare Grand Sport Aérodynamique – and an opulent Cabriolet once owned by King Farouk. But it’s not just the marques that are enough to take your breath away: many are clothed in bodies by the most admired coachbuilders of their day, names such as Chapron, Million-Guiet and Saoutchik. Found sheltering in a garage was one of just three Maserati A6G 2000 Berlinettas with coachwork by Frua, dating from 1956. And then, beneath piles of magazines, they discovered something even more exciting…

    Beneath piles of magazines: Alain Delon's lost Ferrari 250 California 

    …a Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider, with covered headlights, a car whose first owner was comedian Gérard Blain. But according to Artcurial, the intriguing history of this – surely the last barn-find California SWB Spider ever to be unearthed – doesn’t stop there. Blain sold the Ferrari to actor Alain Delon, who was on several occasions photographed at the wheel – accompanied, in 1964, by Jane Fonda (during the filming of ‘Les Félins’) and later by Shirley MacLaine on the Côte d’Azur.

    A mystery to marque historians

    Even the wife of the original collector didn’t know whether he’d sold the California or still owned it, and their children knew nothing about the car until they came across it, a few months ago, hidden under those old newspapers. So it’s hardly surprising that the whereabouts of this important, Pininfarina-designed cabriolet have been – until now – a mystery to marque historians.

    What a discovery!

    What a discovery: and it’s hard to guess at the sort of interest it’s likely to generate among collectors. Fortunately, we won’t have to wait long to find out, as the California Spider will be offered – along with the other 59 cars in this amazing collection – by Artcurial Motorcars in the first part of its traditional auction at the Rétromobile Salon, on 6 February 2015, in Paris.

    Like Lord Carnarvon entering Tutankhamun’s tomb

    Matthieu Lamoure, managing director of Artcurial Motorcars, likens the experience of first being shown the barn finds to “Lord Carnarvon entering Tutankhamun’s tomb”. In his opinion, “Not since the revelation of the Schlumpf Collection in Mulhouse has such a group of emblematic automobiles been disclosed and, what is more, in such original condition. The magic of these 60 mysterious mechanical creatures is more like a giant work of art: the unrealised dream of their owner.”

    Photos: Rémi Dargegen for Classic Driver © 2014. All rights reserved.

    The cars

    Amilcar C6 berline

    Amilcar CGS

    Ariès coach

    Auto Union cabriolet

    Avions Voisin C15

    Avions Voisin limousine C15

    Avions Voisin C7 par Gallé

    Ballot 8 Cyl limousine

    Barré torpédo

    Berliet coupé chauffeur

    Berliet Type VIGB 10HP Taxi Landaulet

    Bugatti 57 Ventoux

    Citroën Trèfle

    Delage D6

    Delage D8 coach

    Delahaye 135 cabriolet Faget Varnet

    Delahaye 135 coach Chapron

    Delahaye 235 coach Chapron

    Delahaye 235 coach Chapron

    Delahaye 235 coupé Chapron

    Delahaye Type 43 coupé chauffeur

    Delahaye GFA 148 L

    Delahaye Type 43 camionnette

    Delaunay Belleville limousine VL8

    Facel Vega Excellence

    Ferrari 250 GT California SWB

    Ferrari 308 GTS i

    Ferrari 400

    Ferrari Mondial 3.2L cabriolet

    Hispano Suiza H6B cabriolet Millon-Guiet

    Hotchkiss cabriolet

    Innocenti S cabriolet

    Jaguar type S 3.4 L

    La Buire 12 A

    Lagonda LG45 cabriolet

    Lancia Thema 8.32

    Lorraine Dietrich B3/6 plateau

    Lorraine Dietrich B3/6 torpédo par Grumman

    Lorraine-Dietrich torpédo

    Maserati A6G 2000 berlinetta Grand Sport Frua

    Mathis cabriolet

    Mathis FOH

    Packard cabriolet Super Eight

    Panhard-Levassor Dynamic berline X77

    Panhard-Levassor Dynamic coupé X76

    Panhard-Levassor limousine X72

    Porsche 356 SC ex-Sonauto

    Renault AX torpédo

    Renault Vivastella cabriolet

    Sandford cyclecar 3 roues

    Singer Cabriolet

    Talbot Lago 11/6 cabriolet

    Talbot Lago Baby cabriolet

    Talbot Lago Baby cabriolet

    Talbot Lago Cadette 11

    Talbot Lago coach

    Talbot Lago T26 coach

    Talbot Lago T26 Grand Sport coupé Saoutchik

    Talbot Lago T26 Record coupé Saoutchik

    Talbot Lago T26 cabriolet Saoutchik ex-Roi Farouk

  • James Bond is Back – 007 returns to the big screen in Spectre

    by Garry Shortt | Dec 5, 2014

    James Bond 007 returns for his 24th outing in the new film Spectre to be released in late October 2015.

    The film will also see the new Aston Martin DB10 which is being built just for the film.

    With only 10 being made, it will make this the most exclusive Aston Martin ever!

    Bond is Back - Preview photo of the stunning new DB10

    Daniel Craig will return to play 007 in his fourth film with director Sam Mendes also returning to direct his second film.

    M and Q return and played by Ralph Fiennes and Ben Whishaw with the usual bevy of Bond Girls headed up by Miss Moneypenny played by Naomie Harriswith newcomers Monica Bellucci and Lea Seydoux.

    Spectre (Special Executive for Counter-Intelligence. Terrorism, Revenge, Extortion) has featured in past Bond Films, but the producers are keeping a tight lid on whether Ernst Stavro Blofeld will be making an appearance.

    The 007 production will based at Pinewood Studios and on location in London, Mexico City, Rome, Tangier and Erfroud in Morocco. The film will also see Bond returned to the slopes in Austria in Solden, Obertilliach and Lake Altausee.

    The Film also marks the 50th Anniversary of Aston Martin and its association with the Bond Films, having provided many different cars over the years including the famous DB5, Vanquish and DBS to name just a few.

    James Bond 007 in the classic Aston Martin DB5Aston Martin Vanquish demonstrating the latest James Bond weaponry and kitAston Martin DBS with Daniel Craig as James Bond 007

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