Fresh on the heels of its announcement as the official auction house of the celebrated Concorso dEleganza Villa dEste, RM Auctions
has revealed two early star attractions for its debut sale on the picturesque Lake Como, Italy on the 21st May - a rare 1955 Ferrari 375 MM Berlinetta by Pinin Farina, s/n 0490 AM, and an exquisite 1938 Talbot-Lago T150C-SS Teardrop Coupé with coachwork by Figoni et Falaschi.
Representing the ultimate in exclusivity, style and performance, these notable early highlights lead an elite group of automobiles set to cross the auction podium at the highly-anticipated evening sale. Held on the banks of Lake Como at the Spazio Villa Erba, the auction forms an integral part of this years official Concorso dEleganza Villa dEste event program.
The early response to our new sale in Cernobbio, Italy has been tremendous with lots of collectors expressing their excitement about RMs involvement in this world-class automotive weekend, says Max Girardo, Managing Director, RM Europe.
In keeping with the spirit of the Concorso dEleganza Villa dEste, the auction will place a strong emphasis on elegance and sophistication in styling, with consignments sourced from around the world. We are delighted to have been entrusted by the current owners of the 375 MM and the Talbot-Lago Teardrop Coupé to present their magnificent automobiles at our debut sale. Immaculately presented, each matches sleek design with engineering excellence and is expected to attract significant attention from discerning collectors.
Resplendent in two-tone ivory and metallic blue, the unique 1955 Ferrari 375 MM Berlinetta, s/n 0490 AM, presents a rare opportunity to acquire one of the worlds most desirable Ferraris. Featuring coachwork by the renowned Italian Carrozzeria, Pinin Farina, 0490 AM was the last 375 MM built and reportedly the last Ferrari to carry the Mille Miglia designation. Displayed on the Ferrari stand at the Turin Motor Show in 1955, it was returned to Pinin Farina shortly after for a series of minor modifications before being delivered to its first owner, official Ferrari dealer and gentleman race driver, Inico Bernabei. 0490 AM was later acquired by Count Antonio Naselli of Trevinano and eventually exported to the United States in 1960, where it remained for the next 50 years. In 2003, it was the recipient of an extensive, concours-quality restoration by Wayne Obrys Motion Products Inc, who returned the car to its Turin Motor Show specifications. It has since been displayed at a number of the worlds most prestigious concours events, including the Pebble Beach Concours dElegance in 2004 where it was judged Best in Class, as well as the Concorso dEleganza Villa dEste in 2005.
Cars like this 375 MM only come to market on the rarest of occasions, adds Girardo. Our debut auction at the Concorso dEleganza Villa dEste is the perfect setting for its sale, particularly when one considers the extraordinary quality of its restoration. It is truly spectacular having been restored to the worlds best standards.
Equally stunning, the breathtaking 1938 Talbot-Lago T150C-SS Teardrop Coupé, chassis 90112, also captures the essence of RMs new sale excellence and beauty. Clothed by master French coachbuilders, Figoni et Falaschi, it is one of only 10 factory built short-chassis cars ever produced and one of just three surviving examples fitted from new with a factory sunroof. Featuring a seductive teardrop body and fenders, one of its most striking features is a graceful chrome grille concealing the headlights - a classic Figoni detail seen on just a handful of examples.
Ordered by M. Troussaint, Director of the Casino at Namur, Belgium and delivered in May 1938, 90112 has enjoyed a long show career, making its debut on the concours circuit in 1939 at the Brussels Concours dElegance, closely followed by a showing at the prestigious Concours dElegance of Deauville in France before disappearing from public view (thought to be the result of World War II). It eventually resurfaced in storage in the 1950s, and was later acquired by its current owners in the early 2000s who engaged RM Auto Restoration to undertake a complete, faithful restoration. Finished in a correct shade of silver, accented with a subtle grey two-tone, it has enjoyed a successful return to the show field in recent years, including Best in Class and Most Elegant Closed Car accolades at the prestigious Pebble Beach Concours dElegance in 2009, and more recently, Best of Show honours at the Concours dElegance of America at Meadow Brook in July 2010.
Combining exquisite coachwork with a competition-bred chassis, the Talbot-Lago Teardrop Coupé is truly one of the worlds most beautiful automobiles and arguably one of the greatest cars of its era. Built during the pinnacle of the French streamlined design movement, it is a wonderful representation of the automobile as art, adds Girardo.