Bonhams’ revised Quail auction still boasts impressive docket

The live/online auction will be presented in association with Petersen Car Week

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A 1936 Mercedes-Benz 500k Offener Tourenwagen, is one of the multi-million dollar offerings | Bonhams photos

As with all things Monterey Car Week 2020, The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering in Carmel, California, has been canceled for this year because of COVID-19, and with it, Bonhams’ usual collector car auction at the adjacent Quail Lodge Farm Field.

But Bonhams will have a 23rd annual Quail Auction on August 14, the company says, only it will be held as a live/online sale based at the company’s Los Angeles salesroom.  A number of East Coast-based cars also will be housed in Bedford Hills, New York, where prospective bidders can schedule in-person or virtual viewings.

While the auction arena will be scaled back, and pandemic protocols will be enforced, online bidders will be able to use Bonhams “virtual viewing” platform “for condition reports and a one-to-one bespoke ‘walkaround’ inspection with a specialist to examine a specific car in detail from front to back,” Bonhams says in a news release.

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A 1935 Aston Martin Ulster roadster comes from a prestigious collection

The rejiggered Quail Auction, now part of Petersen Car Week, will offer the same sort of impressive automobiles as usual, including some exceptional pre-war sports cars and modern supercars.

A number of “most important” Aston Martin models from the estate of David L. Van Schaick, who was obsessed with the British marque, are on the docket, Bonhams notes, such as an absolutely iconic 1935 Aston Martin Ulster with an estimated value of $1.2 million and $1.4 million.

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The 966 Aston Martin DB6 Vantage Shooting Brake is a rare example

Also from the Van Schaick collection is a rare 1966 Aston Martin DB6 Vantage Shooting Brake, one of only six built, purchased by the collector in 1976 and offered publicly for the first time. Its estimated value is $1 million to $1.2 million.

One of the loftiest cars at the auction is a 1934 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 Cabriolet DeCapotable, valued at $6.5 million to $7.5 million.

Mercedes-Benz is well represented in the sale, with a number of 300 SL models, as well as a “rare and supremely elegant” 1936 Mercedes-Benz 500k Offener Tourenwagen, one of just 16 built on the 500K chassis, “and the pinnacle of 1930s motoring.” Its estimated value is $2 million to $2.5 million.

1959 Porsche 718 RSK Spyder sport racer

Another highlight is a 1959 Porsche 718 RSK Spyder sport racer, one of just 34 of these famed giant-killer machines built, which cemented Porsche’s place in international motorsports. This one, valued at $2.8 million to $3.2 million, has a well-known racing history.

“The motorcar – chassis no. 718-031– was ordered new by noted New Jersey motorsport enthusiast Bernie Vihl and extensively campaigned by legendary driver Bob Holbert at numerous SCCA and international events, including the 1959 Bahamas Speed Week, and has been in the same ownership since 1974,” according to Bonhams.

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Modern supercars will be offered from such European brands as Bugatti, Ferrari and Lamborghini. 

The Bonhams auction is linked up with the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles in association with Petersen Car Week, which is hosting a number of otherwise canceled Monterey events, and includes a concours d’elegance on August 16. as its finale.

For more information on Bonhams sale, visit the auction website.

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.

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