Following on from the successful sale of a 1963 Ferrari 250 SWB Rebody for £806,400 in April, the May sale at Brightwells didn’t have anything quite in that league, but there were still plenty of interesting machines on offer. By the time the dust had settled, 66 out of the 107 lots had successfully found new homes for a total of just under £825k.

Top seller of the day was a 2001 Subaru Impreza P1, a rare Prodrive-modified two-door Type-R Impreza, one of only 1,000 made, which fetched a mighty £72,800 thanks to the fact that it was a one-owner example which had only covered 15,000 miles from new. About double the usual going rate for a P1, and almost certainly a UK auction record for the model, it gave further proof of just how desirable Japanese classics have become of late.

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Another JDM classic result of note was the £28,000 raised by a 1975 Datsun 260Z 2+2 Super Samuri, one of only a handful modified in period by Z specialist Spike Anderson. In need of some restoration following many years in storage, it fetched twice as much as a standard 260Z 2+2 in similar condition would have made, such is the buzz surrounding these rare Super Sam conversions. A comparable 240Z would no doubt have made twice as much again, the earlier two-seater being a more sought after model.

Also performing well was a 1962 Jaguar E-Type S1 3.8 Roadster, a German import which had been restored and converted to RHD in the early 1990s. Offered as a straightforward recommissioning project following seven years in storage, it looked like a good buy at £51,520 and would no doubt have fetched rather more if it had not had an engine swap at some point.


Attracting much pre-sale interest was another Jaguar project, a partially built D-Type Replica with rebuilt mechanicals but in need of paint, trim and final assembly which more than doubled its estimate to finish on £33,710.

Also comfortably exceeding its estimate was a beautifully presented 1954 Sunbeam Alpine MkIII, fresh from a nut-and-bolt rebuild by Alpine guru Ken Sparkes, which justified every penny of the £47,940 required to secure it. This was the fourth early Alpine successfully sold by Brightwells within the last couple of years so it seems they have become something of a house speciality.

Rileys are another speciality at Brightwells and there are usually at least one or two in each sale. The top selling example of the marque on this occasion was a beautifully built 1936 Riley MPH Replica. Based on a Kestrel chassis and fitted with a larger 2.5-litre RM engine, it was snapped up by a Belgian buyer for £43,620. Considering that the last genuine MPH sold by Brightwells made £215,000 in 2009, you could call the Replica something of a bargain, offering all the looks of the real deal with even better performance. A 1929 MG Midget which had been restored to a high standard and fitted with a Riley 9 engine also sold well at £22,650.


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Sticking with the British theme, a nicely restored 1968 MGC Roadster with a few choice upgrades including a Toyota 5-speed gearbox looked good value at £17,580. A pair of nicely restored Morris Minor Convertibles did well at £11,200 and £9,520 apiece.

Top seller among the Italian cars on offer was a really lovely 1991 Ferrari 348TS. Well-maintained and in remarkably good condition for its age and 55k mileage, it had no trouble finding a new home at £46,780. Next best was a smart 1990 Lancia Delta HF Integrale 16v with 86k miles which made £23,370 while a nicely restored 1977 Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider Veloce fetched a healthy £20,270.

Leading the way among the German cars was a 1980 Porsche 911SC which had been recently restored and repainted in eye-catching BMW Avus Blue and sold for £41,440. A 2003 Mercedes-Benz CL600 V12 Biturbo Coupe from a deceased estate and with under 15k miles on the clock looked huge value at £16,800 when you consider that it cost over £100k new. A 1999 BMW 840Ci Sport Individual in rare Tannen Green and with the desirable Nurburgring suspension package looked great for its 96k mileage and found a buyer at £14,560.


Elsewhere in the sale a really well-sorted 1971 Citroen DS21 which had recently completed a 2,000-mile Continental tour fully deserved the £19,560 required to secure it. The same could also be said of a beautifully presented 2006 Chevrolet Corvette C6 Targa with only 21k miles and rare 6-speed manual transmission which looked like a lot of car for £20,220.

A final mention should also go to a half-scale model of an Aston Martin DBR2 powered by a 24v electric motor. While £13,550 might sound a lot for what was basically a toy, the aluminium-bodied model was a real work of art and it was money well spent.

The next Brightwells classic car auction will be on 21st June and will have a special section devoted to iconic British-made cars. The deadline for entries is 9th June so if you are considering selling, please get in touch by calling 01568 611122 or by emailing

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