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Canadian-Built Motor Car Fit For Royalty On Offer

For immediate release
24th January 2013

Canadian-Built Motor Car Fit For Royalty On Offer As Bonhams Returns To Oxford For Annual Sale

Eclectic auction will offer everything from a Ferrari to a Morris Oxford, via a Buick with royal connections

A single-owner collection of Canadian-built Buick motor cars, including one that was used by two future Kings of England, will be among the highlights of the upcoming Bonhams sale in Oxford, UK, on Saturday 2nd March.

Following the success of last year’s auction, which recorded an outstanding 100 per cent sale rate, the Bonhams Motor Car and Automobilia departments will return to the regional Oxford salerooms for the first sale of the UK auction calendar.

Among motor cars already consigned is a collection of Buicks led by the 1928 model year McLaughlin-Buick 496 Tourer that is one of only two built and used on the royal tour of Canada in 1927 (estimate £40,000 - £45,000). The custom-built cars were the only vehicles built by the motor company during that year which comfortably seated seven people, and were designed and detailed with class and elegance in mind. They were used extensively by the then Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII), his brother the Duke of York (later King George VI) and their entourage carrying out their civic duties, and were shipped from province to province by train.

Other Buicks in the collection include a 1927 Buick X54 Roadster with coachwork by Fisher (estimate £18,000 - £22,000) and a 1927 Buick 48 Opera Coupé (estimate £13,000 - £15,000).

Another motor car of particular note on offer at the auction is a 1927 example of one of the first Morris Oxfords with coach-built bodywork. The vehicle will go under the hammer in the same month the model celebrates its centenary, and is expected to realise between £18,000 and £22,000.

Leading consignments so far is a 1968 Ferrari 365/250 GT Short Wheel Base Recreation that is estimated at £200,000 to £250,000.

Automobilia lots on offer include a Kingsbury tinplate Golden Arrow world speed car model made in 1929 and finished in gold (estimate £500 - £700), a Morris Trucks enamel sign from the 1930s in the form of a Morris Trucks radiator (estimate £500 - £700), and a Raymond Groves painting entitled ‘First British Grand Prix Silverstone Oct 2nd 1948', depicting Sam Gilbey driving his 1½-litre supercharged Maserati (estimate £700 - £900).

Tim Schofield, Director of the UK Motor Car department, said: “Once again our annual spring Oxford sale is shaping up to offer a wide variety of different motor cars.

“We hope to be able to match the incredible success of last year’s auction, in which every item sold.”


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to Prior to sale there are several days of viewing which collectors and the general public are welcome to attend.


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