The Auburn Auction: 18 Cars to Watch | Prewar race cars to modern exotics

Phootgraphy courtesy Worldwide Auctioneers

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There’s something for everyone at The Auburn Auction this year. Prewar autos. Race cars. Sports. Customs. Classics. American muscle.

If you have a favorite category, most likely it’ll be there at the 2022 expanded edition. You’ll find plenty one-of-a-kind cars, many of which carry a rich history.

The Auburn Auction takes place during Labor Day weekend, September 1-3. The expansive headquarters of Worldwide Auctioneers hosts the event, located in the “classic car capital of the world,” Auburn, Indiana. The auction welcomes spectators, too. In addition to vehicles, there will also be select memorabilia and a curated marketplace of automotive lifestyle vendors.

Nevertheless, the cars are the stars, and we present 18 vehicles to watch. 

1925 Bugatti Type 35A Grand Prix


A rare and highly authentic prewar racing icon. Former keepers of this Bugatti include race driver Louie Chiron’s patron, Fred Hoffman. Its competition history includes the 1926 Provence Grand Prix. Bugatti concessionaire Jean Ollivier raced it in its heyday.

The American Bugatti Club documented the car, which is well known by marque experts such as David Sewell. Worldwide Auctioneers said it’s “on the button” and “ready to race, show, tour and enjoy.” Backing that up, in 2017, the Bugatti toured more than 4000 miles through Europe. In 2009, it won the Monterey Cup at Laguna Seca.

1927 Packard Dual Windshield Phaeton


President Franklin D. Roosevelt used this vehicle to visit Works Progress Administration projects. It comes equipped with the original gun holsters sewn into the doors for Secret Service agents. The Packard has a desirable dual windshield, is draped in a unique color scheme, and has undergone an older, comprehensive restoration. World Auctioneers offers it without reserve.

1928 Rolls-Royce Phantom I Ascot Dual Cowl Sport Phaeton


Robert Redford’s “Gatsby Rolls” starred in the 1974 movie “The Great Gatsby.” The car underwent a thorough restoration that totaled more than $1.2 million. This car is believed to be the only Ascot Sport Phaeton built as a dual-cowl. This vehicle is well-documented with ownership history.

1929 Duesenberg Model J Convertible Coupe


The ACD Club-certified vehicle still contains the original and matching engine, body, chassis and firewall. It was recently restored by a marque specialist. The car won the 2021 ACD Club Annual Meet Best Duesenberg award. It has never been offered for public sale.

1931 Duesenberg Model J Blind Quarter Sedan


Peruvian sugar heir Antonio Chopitea bought this car new on July 3, 1931. Then, Prince Otto, the last crown prince of the Austro-Hungarian empire, bought the car. Later on, the Sursock family of Lebanon, one of the world’s wealthiest families, owned it. The preservation-class Duesenberg has had only a single repaint. It contains the original engine, body and chassis. The vehicle “performed wonderfully” during the 2022 Enthusiast Tour. It’s offered without reserve.

1936 Bentley 4¼-Litre Airflow Sedan


One of only two Bentleys built to this design specification. Gurney Nutting exhibited the car at the 1936 Olympia Motor Show in the United Kingdom. A very well-documented vehicle, it’s featured in Johnnie Green’s book “Bentley: Fifty Years of the Marque.” It’s offered without reserve.

1946 Ford Sportsman Convertible


Top woodie aficionado Tom Sharp restored and owned this iconic Ford. It’s a perfect 1000-point Dearborn award winner. This is one of 1209 produced in 1946. It’s offered without reserve.

1950 AC Two-Litre Sports Tourer


This is a rarely seen and nicely restored vehicle that represents as few as 70 examples built. Furthermore, this AC was special-ordered new in black finish with roll-up side windows. Noted collector John Moir owned it new and later repurchased the vehicle. This AC comes with its complete ownership history. It’s offered without reserve.

1955 Chevrolet Corvette Pilot Car


GM built only 700 Corvettes in 1955, and this is one of them. Specifically, it’s the seventh Corvette produced for that model year. It has only 2 miles on it since a fresh, ground-up restoration. This Corvette has never before been shown, and it’s ready to be exhibited.

1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing


Not only is this one of only 1400 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwings produced, it’s the only in the distinctive color of Mittelgrün. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Foundation held it in its collection for almost 50 years. While in their possession, it underwent a meticulous restoration during the 2000s. This Gullwing retains its original engine, transmission, fuel injection and belly pans. Prices for concours-quality examples of the Gullwing have eclipsed $2 million.

1956 Jaguar XK140 MC DHC


This piece of racing history involves two hall-of-famers–American sportsman and two-time Le Mans class winner Briggs Cunningham and journalist and Autoweek cofounder Denise McCluggage. The car came out of Cunningham’s race team’s shop and he also raced it once. However, McCluggage regularly competed with the XK140, winning her first race with it. The current owner found the Jaguar in a barn, where it resided for nearly 30 years. It has matching numbers and appears to be unaltered since its days on the track.

1958 Chevrolet Corvette 283/290 “Fuelie” Convertible


Larry Gerig, an authoritative expert on Corvettes, restored this award-winning car. It has earned two NCRS Top Flight awards, scoring 99.7 and 99.9 points. It’s also Bloomington Gold certified, scoring 99.4 points. The Corvette won a Duntov award, too. Plus, it’s rare–one of 157 produced in Inca Silver with silver coves. It’s offered without reserve.

1964 Ferrari 330 GT 2+2


This is a rare opportunity to own a fascinating Ferrari, according to Worldwide Auctioneers. It has only 3200 actual miles, with a known history since new. The Ferrari also comes with a Massini report. It’s won the Platinum Preservation and Premio di Platino awards. The car is offered without reserve.

1965 Sunbeam Tiger


The high-performance, Ford V8-powered British sports car features the handiwork of American car designer Carroll Shelby. The idea of outfitting the car with a Ford V8 powerplant came from Formula 1 champion Jack Brabham. This particular car, with serial No. B9470142, is offered without reserve.

1967 Porsche 912


Porsche added the 912 after discontinuing the Type 356 and introducing the 911. The 912 came with a four-cylinder as opposed to the flat-six found in the 911. The smaller engine made less horsepower but also weighed less. This made the car nimble with great handling characteristics. This Porsche is offered without reserve.

1986 Ferrari Testarossa


The iconic 1980s supercar features highly desirable single-year styling. It’s well documented, with service receipts and ownership history. This Ferrari won the St. John’s Concours d’Elegance award and is Ferrari Classiche certified.

1990 Lamborghini Countach


Not only one of the last Countachs built, but also a rare 25th Anniversary edition. It has been fastidiously maintained, with only 3966 miles on it. The Countach has had only one private owner. It comes with the original, never-used, four-piece Lamborghini leather luggage set.

2019 Porsche 911 GT2 RS


With one owner and 150 miles on the odometer, the car is presented in “as-new” condition. One of only 1000, this Porsche comes in the highly desirable Miami Blue, with a custom-ordered black and red Alcantara leather interior. The engine puts out a whopping 700 horsepower. On top of that, this particular example comes with the Weissach Package, which reduces weight by more than 40 pounds.

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Indy - Guy
Indy - Guy UltimaDork
8/18/22 9:26 a.m.



rdstr New Reader
8/18/22 1:21 p.m.

The Derham bodied Duesenberg sedan was not bought new by Prince Otto but was bought by  Antonio Chopitea (a good Duesenberg customer in the day) and later sold to Prince Otto. WorldWide has since corrected their history.

J.A. Ackley
J.A. Ackley Senior Editor
8/18/22 1:51 p.m.

In reply to rdstr :

Thank you for letting us know! We've corrected the story. We appreciate eagle-eyed readers such as yourself. Thank you.

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