You are here

BMW 3.0 CSL at Monterey auction

  1. Yes, you’re looking at a Batmobile. Not the one driven by that rubber-clad lunatic with a penchant for vengeful violence, but one which made 1970s motorsport most exciting to watch. It is the BMW 3.0 CSL, and it’s going up for auction.

    This SIII 206bhp 3.2-litre straight-six beast is just one of 110 built and was fully restored in 1997, featuring aluminium body panels, Plexiglas side windows and the “complete suite” of Batmobile aero devices: roof hoop, rear spoiler, front bumper wind splits, front air dam and, of course, that tremendously-sized rear wing.

    It’s expected to fetch around £100,000 at RM’s annual Monterey Auction in California next week (19-20 Aug). But this is just one of a host of star cars being pawned off for money. We’ve picked some of the highlights, including Steve McQueen’s Porsche and a £670,000 Mercedes 300 SL Gullwing…

    Words: Vijay Pattni & Matthew Jones

  2. 1975 Maserati Bora Coupe - approx £50,000

    Believe it or not, this Giugiaro-designed mid-engined Italian supercar was built while Maserati was under the auspices of Citroen. Hence the high-pressure hydraulics for the windows, pop-up headlights, adjustable seats and vented disc brakes.

  3. Helpfully, Maserati also popped in a 4.9-litre V8 in the middle producing 320bhp together with a five-speed gearbox, allowing a 0-60mph time of 6.6 seconds and a 170mph top speed. This particular example - just one of 564 Boras built - is apparently “rust-free” having covered just 24,000 miles. Expected to go for $80,000 (£50k).

  4. 1975 Ferrari 365 GT4 Berlinetta Boxer - approx £122,000

    The 344bhp GT4 BB debuted Ferrari’s first-ever road going flat 12-cylinder and this one offered here is one of just 387 built. In fact, this 4.4-litre “boxer” engine was derived from the company’s 3.0-litre Formula One powerplant, and has undergone a full rebuild including cylinders, exhaust system, and a complete “valve job”.

  5. Since the rebuild it’s covered just 900 miles and totals 17,300 miles on the clock.

  6. 1973 Lamborghini Espada Coupe - approx £25,000

    You should know all about Ferrucio Lamborghini now. He was a ballsy Italian man who served in WW2 and built tractors. He became rich. He liked fast, luxurious GT cars and, fed up with the ones already on offer from the likes of Jaguar, Benz and Ferrari, decided to build his own one. This was one of them: the 4.0-litre V12-engined Espada.

  7. Designed by Marcello Gandini - who also did the Miura - the Espada produced 350bhp and was capable of a 155mph top speed, thus making it the world’s fastest four-seat production car on our humble little planet at that time. Good luck managing that now, though. This one’s covered 34,000 miles and is offered in “nice condition”. Splendid.

  8. 1984 Ferrari 512 BBi - approx £91,000

    Pity the Ferrari 512. The rather stunning, mid-engined supercar with a 4.9-litre flat-12 engine and 340bhp was introduced at the 1971 Turin motor show in a bid to compete with the Lamborghini Miura. As we mentioned, pity it.

  9. In a bid to keep it minty fresh, the supercar was further refined when in 1981, Ferrari added Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection (hence the ‘i’), which facilitated performance figures of 0-60mph in 5.4 seconds, a quarter mile time of 14.3 seconds and a top speed of 175mph.

    Amazingly, this particular 512 BBi was owned by a single owner for 23 years, and has covered less than 5,300 miles since new.

  10. 2004 Porsche Carrera GT - approx £245,000

    Remember, this is the same car that made Jeremy come out in goose pimples and carries the same 5.7-litre racing-spec V10 that he found to be “absolutely mind-blowing”: welcome to the Porsche Carrera GT.

    Jeremy drives the Porsche Carrera GT

  11. The 605bhp V10 pushes the mid-engined Porker from 0-60mph in 3.8 seconds, 0-100mph in under seven and on to a top speed of 205mph. That’s enough to present your intestines with an entirely new philosophy of operation. There’s a carbon-fibre monocoque underneath, lightweight ceramic composite brakes, 20in forged aluminium wheels and a rear wing that deploys at above 70mph.

  12. 1957 Mercedes 300 SL ‘Gullwing' Coupe - approx £670,000

    When Mercedes deployed its Gullwing coupe at the races, they finished 2nd in the Mille Miglia, scored a 1-2-3 in the Swiss Sports Car race, 1-2 at Le Mans, 1-2-3-4 at the ‘Ring and a 1-2 in Mexico. Mercedes was happy, it’s little supercar racer had done the job.

    But something happened, and the legend of US importer Max Hoffman pleading with Daimler officials to build a road-going version of the SL persists. In New York, on 6 February 1954, it happened - the Gullwing was born.

  13. Powered by a 215bhp 3.0-litre straight-six sent through a four-speed box to the rear wheels, the 300 SL is one of the finest Mercs ever built, and this one has been fully restored, with just over 56,000 miles on the clock and is “basically a one-owner car”. Sell the family and head over to California…

    Gallery: Mercedes S63 AMG meets the 300 SEL AMG

  14. 1958 BMW 507 Roadster - approx £730,000

    Our favourite US importer Max Hoffman strikes again; he and industrial designer Count Albert Goertz designed the beautiful 507 Roadster that made it’s debut at the 1955 Frankfurt motor show. In a nutshell, it is the first BMW Z4.

  15. It’s powered by a 3.2-litre all-alloy V8 producing 155bhp sent to the rear wheels (on a live rear axle) with a four-speed gearbox mounted near the centre of the wheelbase for better weight distribution.

    And the smashingly-designed 507 was owned by such luminaries as Ursula Andress and a quite-famous-singer called “Elvis Presley”. Yes, us neither.

  16. 1970 Porsche 911 S - £POA

    You’re not Steve McQueen, and therefore, nothing you do is cool. But if the highest form of flattery is imitation, you can pay homage to the screen legend by purchasing his old Porsche 911.

  17. This very green and very classic Porsche actually featured in 1971’s Le Mans, where it was treated to a softly-lit montage of adulation. McQueen loved driving it so much, he actually added the car to his collection.

    Comes with air con, a “full complement” of options and is offered in damn-near factory fresh original condition. How much, you cry? If you have to ask…

  18. 1934 Brisko-Dreyer Sprint Car: £36,730

    We all store pointless things in the garage. A beige vacuum cleaner, seasons 1-10 of Friends on VHS and the late Bunbun’s hutch, for example. Throw them all away and replace with this.

    It’s red. It’s loud. It just as non-road-legally useless - it’s a 1934 Brisko-Dreyer Sprint Car.

  19. Built primarily for half-mile and mile-long dirt tracks during the 1930s and 1940s, the 92-inch wheelbase chassis was fabricated by Floyd “Pop” Dreyer and powered by a Frank Brisko-built DOHC 4.4-litre four-pot engine.

    Breathing through snorty twin-updraft Winfield carburetors, suspended via leaf springs all-round and sporting worrying rear-wheel-only drum brakes, it sounds like the good kind of lethal.

  20. 1941 Chrysler Thunderbolt Concept: £734,600

    It may look like something Buck Rogers found in his wife’s bedside drawer, but this absurd contraption counts itself among the world’s most revered classics - it’s won awards at Pebble Beach, Amelia Island and Newport Beach concours competitions

    The aluminium and copper-bodied Chrysler concept - which still wears its original inline eight-cylinder engine - was also the very first convertible with a fully retractable hard top.

  21. This one’s had a colossal 10,000-hour restoration, which included the fabrication of all-new copper trim and a re-designed convertible top, improving on the original (and allegedly useless) layout.

    It also got a fresh coat of Teal Green paint - the colour was decided on by referring to an artist’s sketch drawn in period. Want.

  22. 1948 Allard M1 Drophead Coupe: £48,900

    Before throwing rubbish plastic microcars together, Allard built Very Awesome Stuff. Like this. V8? Check. Rag-top? Check. Looks a bit Munstersy? Check.

    Instead of crafting infinitesimally complex zillion-valve engines like most British race engineers, Allard chose hardy Ford mechanicals. Namely the 3.6-litre 85bhp V8 from a Pilot.

  23. Aside from the engine - Ford hardware was an Allard mainstay - the luxurious M1 Drophead was a bit of an anomaly as the firm usually crafted minimalist racers.

  24. 1899 Columbia Electric Landaulet: £214,000

    Guess how many emissions this produces? WRONG - the answer’s none. Behold one of the world’s earliest electric cars. Though electric horseless carriage seems more appropriate.

    It’s believed to be the last known surviving Columbia Electric Landaulet and features dual direct-drive Edison DC motors, solid front and rear axles with full-elliptic leaf springs and two-wheel mechanical brakes.

  25. It was acquired by a plantation owner from Charleston, South Carolina. After a few years of use it was retired to storage because he had difficulty finding places to recharge it. Which rings a bell…

  26. 1993 Jaguar XJ220: £135,000

    The XJ220 didn’t do great things for Jaguar. It promised customers four-wheel drive and a 500bhp V12 before trousering several £50,000 deposits.

    Then it decided on 2wd. And a V6. As you can imagine, prospective buyers were a bit miffed.

  27. Despite the PR catastrophe, the 217mph XJ220 remains an awesome machine. And this one’s covered just 1800 miles. Built in August 1993, it’s one of 37 unsold XJ220s that were stored, sparingly driven and serviced at the Jaguar factory in Coventry before being turned over by the factory to Grange Jaguar, London.

  28. 1932 Ford Edelbrock Special Highboy Roadster: £250,000

    Built by engineers at fledgling speed shop, Edelbrock, this homebrewed Ford Roadster used to run at 146.365 mph on the Bonneville Salt Flats during the fifties. Which, in hot rod terms, is about as close as you can get to a perfect history storm.

    Known as the Edelbrock Special, it uses a 1929 Ford Model A roadster body on a ‘32 chassis - the smaller body had a slipperier profile - and set several records early in the decade.

  29. It comes with more than 400 extras - should hope so too for £250,000 - including a Class C flathead V8, the original tonneau cover, tow bar, fuel tank, trophies, programs, timing sheets, race results, receipts (some with Vic Edelbrock’s name on), early Edelbrock and Iskenderian catalogues and lots of original pics from the salt’s heyday. It is legend.

  30. As internet Jedis, we detect a disturbance in the force. You want another picture of the CSL. Have it. But only because you’ve been good. 

What do you think?

This service is provided by Disqus and is subject to their privacy policy and terms of use. Please read Top Gear’s code of conduct (link below) before posting.

Promoted content