Internationally, demand for classic cars and collector vehicles remains unperturbed in a pandemic year even as live auctions have mostly been scrapped. It turns out that aficionados are ready to buy them online without either a test drive or inspection.
Auction house AstaGuru will host the third edition of its annual ‘Vintage & Classic Car’ online on 27 and 28 November, the only Indian auction house to deal with vintage cars. The catalogue will feature a specially curated line-up of rare vintage and classic cars by manufacturers like Rolls-Royce, Mercedes-Benz, Ford, Cadillac, Wolseley, Chevrolet, Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino (FIAT), Rover, Jaguar and Buick, amongst others. The auction promises great provenance for seasoned collectors including a lot originally from the collection of the Princely State of Tonk.
The headliner is a magnificent 1917 Ford Model T, the revolutionary car that defined the future for assembly line production worldwide. Another intriguing buy could be a vintage Wolseley 11/22 drophead coupe from the year 1926—its highlight being its drophead coupe body style and the seating arrangement of two seats in front and a dickey seat/rumble in the rear. It has a side-mounted stepney wheel and a fuel can with a wooden dashboard as the interior.
Another item is a Chevrolet Master Six from the 1930s. Cosmetically and mechanically refurbished, it is a reliable family car.
Jehangir Bhoot, a specialist in automobiles at AstaGuru, says, “India has a niche, but steadily growing vintage car collectors’ market. Through this well-curated auction line-up, we aim to showcase some of the best models, rich in provenance, aesthetics and craftsmanship. We are very happy to include rare masterpieces which will be a true value addition to any collection. We anticipate strong demand for each of the cars that are part of the lineup.”
There's Cadillac's famed ‘Series 61’ from 1948; only a handful are believed to exist in India. The two-door sedanette functions with its original engine and drivetrain. A beautiful, quaint Mercedes–Benz 180B from 1960, [with] an original 1.8 litre overhead valve (OHV) engine and a manual gearbox. An important offering from Rolls Royce Silver Spirit 1982 is a well-maintained Marque with refurbished interiors.
The auction house also hosted a special preview for car enthusiasts in Mumbai on November 20-21 at High Street Phoenix in Lower Parel.