It is February and I jump on the train to Paris for the annual festival of Gallic automotive goodness, known as the Rétromobile. As with every year, there is much to admire and enjoy – the standard of this show is consistently high. Perhaps the best way to illustrate this is to focus on a number of the cars that caught my eye, I did the same last year, which you can see HERE.
One of the most amazing features of this year's Rétromobile was something car treasure hunters only dare to dream of. A collection of some 60 vintage cars was discovered in a barn, where else?
For once this was not just hype, an amazing collection of assorted cars were assembled during the 1950's to the 1970's by transport magnate Roger Baillon, who planned to create a classic car museum. His dreams foundered when his businesses hit hard times and he was eventually forced to sell around half his automotive treasure trove, the balance was now up for sale. Even such an unpromising shell as the above 1949 Talbot-Lago T26 Grand Sport with bodywork by Saoutchik was in in demand, going for $1.9 million!
Another hit was this Maserati A6G 2000 Gran Sport that raised $2.2 million, a record.
A record until at least this went up for auction and dominated – the Ferrari 250 GT SWB "California Spider". Dating from 1961, this particular example had been the property of French actor and film star, Alain Delon. There were pictures on display of him and a very young Jane Fonda riding around in this car from the early 60's................we can all dream.
At the Artcurial Auction the Ferrari went for a record $18.5 million, incroyable!Additional photography courtesy of and copyright to Artcurial Motorcars.
In total the Baillon Collection was sold in its entirety for $52 million, what can one say? Perhaps that cobwebs are the new straw, whatever, it is doubtful that we shall see the like again in our lifetime.
There were a lot more notable legends at the Rétromobile that caught my eye, so you better come back tomorrow to check out a sleek Porsche 936 that had a historic comeback to win it all!