Appreciation of American classics on the increase
Ahead of its autumn auction, Historics at Brooklands believe a rising popularity in cult American cars is taking US classics from the fringes of the classic car scene, to centre stage.
This view, shared by the foremost magazine on American marques, Classic American, will be put to the test when Historics lines up its latest collection of cars at Brooklands, on Saturday 1st September.
Ben Klemenzson, Editor of Classic American magazine comments: “The prevalence of American cars in popular culture has helped tackle some of the snobbery towards US models, and highlighted how fun, affordable and easy to run they can be.
“They’re also appreciating in value: cars like the Mustang, Corvette and most Mopars have more than doubled in value over the last decade. The trick is to buy the best you can and stick with what’s popular: Mustangs, Corvettes, GTOs, Chargers, Challengers and Camaros,” he concluded.
Historics at Brooklands Auction Director, Edward Bridger-Stille, is equally convinced of the role popular culture has played in pushing American classics to the fore.
“Our white glove sale of all 56 vehicles offered from the big screen blockbuster, Captain America, back in our March 2011 sale, demonstrates how film and television has pushed these cars into the public conscience.”
He continued: “With parts often readily available, American cars are eminently useable, and we’re delighted to be able to continue offering the best US classics to our enthusiastic followers.”
The autumn auction will be no different, with a number of equally intriguing American classics already consigned to the catalogue.
Featuring fresh design cues over the 1965 model, of integral bumpers and grilles, more rounded wasp-waisted body contours and flared sculpturing of the door and rear three quarter sections, the 1967 Pontiac Catalina ‘Wide Track’ Convertible became one of the most sought-after 1960s American soft-tops.
Imported from Texas in 2011, Historics’ 1967 example is fitted with the 6 ½ litre 400 engine and Turbo Hydramatic automatic gearbox, while power front brakes provide suitable stopping power.
Finished in maroon with black interior, the car is accompanied by a complete service history including Texas registration certificate, and is estimated to fetch bids in the region of £29,000 – £35,000.
Equally eye-catching, Historics is also bringing a 1958 Buick Limited Riviera Sedan – lavished with every conceivable extra – to its September sale.
The Buick Limited series was touted as the ultimate Buick, and was typified by a healthy use of chrome, most noticeably on the grille, rear quarter panels and tail light housings. The style statement was backed up by quad headlights and ‘Dual Jet’ reversing lights.
Measuring a mighty 19 feet long, the four door pillarless sedan also boasts electric power windows, servo assisted brakes, power steering, electric antenna and factory fitted air conditioning.
A multiple award winner over the last two decades, the Buick Limited Riviera Sedan is in original condition and is anticipated to attract offers of between £18,000 and £24,000.
Like the Buick Limited, Chevrolet’s ‘Bel-Air’ typified the US public’s post-war preference for exclusivity over economy.
Automatic transmission, electric windows and electric seat adjusters were a mainstay, with the 1957 Two-Ten Station Wagon ‘Bel-Air’ consigned by Historics and offered at No Reserve, also boasting a resplendently restored interior.