A rare 1937 Bugatti Type 57 – hidden from view for more than 50 years – hits Bonhams Auction in February with a £5-7 million estimate.
The world may now think of Bugatti as the bonkers luxury hypercar brand owned by VW, but long before Volkswagen gobbled Bugatti up and started with the Veyron, it was making perhaps the world’s most impressive cars.
One of the most impressive – the Bugatti Type 57 – was also the fastest car of the day, and now we get to see a Type 57 that’s been hidden from public view since 1969 and is due to hit Bonhams Auction next month.
Bought new by shipping magnate Robert Ropner, it comes with one of just three special lightweight frames built for the 1936 Type 57G Tank sports racing car, complete with bodywork by Corsica of London and a 3.3 litre straight eight straight from the racers too.
When Ropner sold the Bugatti it went to Rodney Clarke, who founded the Connaught GP Team, before ending up with engineer and Bugatti aficionado Bill Turnbull in 1969, who soon after acquiring the car set about restoring it.
That restoration project turned in to a life’s work for Turnbull, a job he almost finished before he died. Now, with just a bit of final assembly needed, the Bugatti is being auctioned off by his estate at Bonhams Legends of the Road sale in February where it’s estimated at £5-7 million.
This glorious Bugatti Type 57, or a chunk more on a new Bugatti Centodieci?