Home Car Culture Commentary Auctioneer celebrating 50 years at 15th Artcurial ‘les Champs’ sale

Auctioneer celebrating 50 years at 15th Artcurial ‘les Champs’ sale


A 1-of-34 1953 Fiat OttoVu Tipo 106 Sport Berlinetta, a 1924 Bugatti Type 23 Biplace Sport and vehicles from five collections, including a group of 47 motorcycles, highlight the docket for Artcurial Motorcars’ 15th annual Automobiles sur les Champs auction, scheduled for October 27 at the Champs Elysees in Paris.

Herve Poulain

The sale also marks Herve Poulain’s 50th anniversary as an auctioneer. Artcurial notes that Poulain’s passions are contemporary art and speed, and that he has played a significant role in “raising the status of automobiles to that of fine art.” 

Poulain created the concept of “art cars;” he raced 11 times in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and each time commissioned artists such as Calder, Lichtenstein, Warhol and others to paint his car. 

Poulain will again take the gavel for the Paris auction which will include nearly 120 lots, among them 70 automobiles.

“This sale will offer an exciting range of automobiles at very attractive prices, reflecting the current market,” Matthieu Lamoure, Artcurial Motorcars managing director, is quoted in the auction house announcement. 

The 1953 Fiat OttoVu Tipo 106 Sport Berlinetta is one of only 34 examples of the first series Rapi version and is eligible for the Mille Miglia and other such events. The car on offer retains its original engine, “which runs like clockwork,” according to the auction house. The car, featuring a dashboard created specifically for the first series, is expected to sell for more than $1.2 million.

“We are delighted to be presenting, the star of the show, this highly rare Fiat 8V Rapi with its legendary engine, that contributed to the marque’s history in competition,” Lamoure added.

1924 Bugatti Type 23 Biplace Sport was first of the breed with 4-valve engine architecture

The 1924 Bugatti Type 23 Biplace Sport has a long ownership history that includes Henri Malartre, one of the first Bugatti collectors and founder of a motor museum in Rochetaillée. The car, also known as the “Brescia” Bugatti, was the first Bugatti with a 4-valve engine. It has participated eight times in the Mille Miglia Historic and is expected to sell for more than $600,000.

Among the collections on the docket are four Ferraris from Raymond Jeannot; 10 cars, including a 1961 Ferrari 250 GTE Series 1, from a Monaco-based collector; and a group of convertibles — ranging from a 1960 Cadillac Series 62 to a 1975 Volkswagen Beetle — from yet another collection.

1969 Renault 8 Gordini

The docket ranges from “more-affordable” vehicles such as a 1969 Renault 8 Gordini that won its class in the Hungarian Rally (pre-sale estimate of around $50,000), and an unrestored, 34,361-kilometer 1988 Ferrari Testarossa offered at no reserve and expected to sell for around $27,500.

Several modern supercars also will be offered, including a 2006 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, a 2002 Lamborghini Murcielago and a 2008 Porsche 997 GT3 that was delivered new to Porsche Carrera Cup France champion Anthony Beltoise.

The motorcycle collection | Photo for Artcurial by Christophe Gasco

Another highlight will be a group of 43 classic motorcycles, “the majority of these highly collectable machines are sought-after, low mileage examples in highly original condition and all will be offered at no reserve,” according to Artcurial. 

“The collection, stored for many years in a private museum, comprises a wide range of marques and models, from classic Italian bikes such as the 1967 Benelli Sport Leoncino 125 to sought-after German machines including the very special 1937 Zündapp K 800 Side-Car. 

“One of BMW’s greatest successes will also star in the sale: the BMW R80 G/S. This model launched the GS range in 1980 and became a best-seller for the marque. The example in the sale dates from 1984.”

For more information, visit the Artcurial Motorcars website.

Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


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