Press Release

Gooding & Company Unveils Timeless 1950s 
Collector Cars for Geared Online October 2020

Offerings include a factory prototype Maserati and one of the world’s most collectible cars – the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing.

Santa Monica, Calif. (October 15, 2020) – Gooding & Company, the auction house revered for selling the world’s most significant and desirable collector cars, is poised to present an outstanding collection of blue chip and concours-winning sports cars on its record-setting online only platform, Geared Online, from October 26-30. Included in the company’s online sale is the factory prototype 1956 Maserati A6G/54 Spider, an outstanding 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing, and a beautifully restored 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 Sc Cabriolet. All three of these consignments represent the authenticity, provenance, beauty, and history that today’s savviest collectors desire most.

1956 Maserati A6G/54 Spider (Estimate: $2,000,000 – $2,750,000) Unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in 1954, the A6G/54 represented the ultimate evolution of Maserati’s first postwar sports car. The A6G/54 was an exclusive gran turismo developed from the highly successful A5GCS racing cars and the earlier single-cam A6G/2000 road car. Its fine engineering and exquisite attention to detail embodied the very best qualities of the Maserati marque. Based on a robust tube-frame chassis, the A6G/54 borrowed a variety of features from the A6GCS, including many of its race-proven braking, steering, and suspension components. At the heart of the car is a gorgeous all-aluminum twin-cam six-cylinder engine that Gioacchino Colombo had originally developed for competition purposes. The A6G/54 was among the best performing two-liter cars of its era, equipped with three Weber side-draft carburetors, and available with an optional twin- plug cylinder head.

According to marque historian Dr. Adolfo Orsi, just nine A6G/54s were fitted with Frua’s Spider coachwork. The Maserati presented here, chassis 2180, was the first A6G/54 Frua Spider built, and as such, was the prototype of this exclusive series. Constructed by Frua between May and August 1956, this Spider possesses several unique features not seen on any subsequent example. Notably, this car’s aluminum dashboard is painted entirely in the body color, rather than upholstered, and is adorned with decorative trim on the instrument panel.

Delivered new to Paris-based Maserati agents, the A6G/54 soon moved to America, where it has since been owned by marque enthusiasts throughout its life. Under the careful supervision of Maserati authority Dr. Adolfo Orsi, Jr., the 2180 was completely restored to its original splendor. Carrozzeria AutoSport carried out the comprehensive restoration of the Frua coachwork, carefully repairing the original body, and seamlessly integrating newly fabricated panels with carefully preserved sections of original aluminum. Completed in April 2008, after nearly five years of continuous work, the 2180 was issued a FIVA passport and debuted at the prestigious Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, where it justifiably earned First in Class honors. After this impressive showing, the Maserati returned home to Houston, where it won a prize at the Classy Chassis Concours d’Elegance. Due to its exceptional style, superb dynamic qualities, and mechanical sophistication, this fashionable Maserati has long been the preferred choice of connoisseurs, and makes an ideal entry into the most exclusive automotive events from the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance to the Colorado Grand.

1957 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing (Estimate: $1,000,000 – $1,300,000) The dynamic New York car dealer Max Hoffman is credited for inspiring the creation of the iconic 300 SL Gullwing. Thanks to Hoffman, Mercedes-Benz responded to the market’s demand for a high-end sports car-inspired by the marque’s great 1950s racing success, with the limited, 1,400-car run of the 300 SL Gullwing, which was built between 1954 and 1957. The Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing is often referred to as the first modern supercar, setting a new benchmark for sports car design. The Gullwing’s visual excitement and advanced engineering contribute to their allure, with historians and enthusiasts in agreement that Mercedes-Benz produced a car decades ahead of its time.

Considered to be one of the most groundbreaking and important automobiles ever produced, few have been restored to such stunning condition as the example offered here. Tasked by famed 300 SL restoration expert Jerry Hjeltness, this Gullwing underwent a 10-month body-off restoration in which most components were renewed, restored, or replaced to new or better condition. Upon completion, the car was shown at the Le Cercle Concours in California, where it won Best of Show.

It is undeniable that the 300 SL Gullwing is a true, blue chip collectible. Today the car remains in stunning condition, and its restoration appears incredibly fresh. It is finished in Silver (DB 180) over a green leather interior with matching green fitted luggage. With its known provenance, owner’s manual, tool kit, knock-off hammer, spare tire and jack, and sensational appearance, this Gullwing awaits major concours or event exposure.

1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 Sc Cabriolet (Estimate: $750,000 – $950,000) Introduced as a four-door sedan and convertible sedan, the 300-Series Mercedes-Benz cars signaled a return to prewar prominence. The design and development of these new paradigms also provided the basic mechanicals of the competition cars. This paved the way for the all-conquering 300 SL racers of 1952 and the SL road cars of 1955. These luxurious limited-production cars, generating 150 horsepower with a three-carburetor engine, were well received by both the motoring press and the buying public. Refined and hand-built, the 300 Sc Cabriolet, with its insulated convertible top and landau bows, is both the rarest and most luxurious of the series. Only 49 were constructed over the short production run.

This 300 Sc Cabriolet recently underwent a painstaking restoration by renowned Mercedes-Benz specialist Rudi Koniczek, who returned the car to its attractive and desirable factory-delivered colors of Tobacco Brown with tan interior and a brown top. The car’s mechanical components were also replaced or repaired, bringing this exquisite car to concours standards. It is increasingly rare to find a 300 Sc Cabriolet in such outstanding condition, making this a can’t-miss opportunity for any serious collector and Mercedes-Benz enthusiast.

Additional highlights for this month’s Geared Online auction includes a 1952 Alfa Romeo 1900C Cabriolet (Estimate: $250,000 – $350,000) retained by one owner for over 55 years and never before offered for public sale, and a 1954 Alfa Romeo 1900C SS Coupe (Estimate: $240,000 – $280,000).

The auction house’s online only auction series will complement the company’s live auction events and offer a selection of reserve and no reserve lots, providing a superb array of automotive brilliance for every level of collector. Gooding & Company will house all vehicles and automobilia included in the online auction within one accessible location, providing the unique ability to offer on-site inspections for interested bidders and to engage with the available lots on behalf of buyers and sellers. The auction house invites you to speak with a Gooding & Company staff member for more information on how to consign for the upcoming sales.

Geared Online | October 2020 Online Catalogue Available: Monday, October 19 Auction Begins: Monday, October 26, 9:00 AM PDT Lots Begin Closing: Friday, October 30, 12:00 PM PDT Auction Details: Facebook: Twitter: @goodingandco #GearedOnline Instagram: @goodingandcompany #GearedOnline YouTube: Phone: 310.899.1960

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