An early ‘thin-gauge chassis’ 1968 Lamborghini Miura P400 will lead a strong Essen online-only line-up with an estimate of €700,000 – €800,000 without reserve.
Amidst recent COVID-19 distancing issues, RM Sotheby’s has announced that its second annual Essen auction will be an online-only sale. The sale due to take place 3–11 June via this link will see the majority of the cars originally set for the physical live auction being offered in a ‘time-based’ online auction.
1968 Lamborghini Miura P400
The auction will comprise of approximately 200 fine collector cars and a selection of memorabilia, parts, and collectables, including the first Miura delivered to Paris alongside chassis no. 3108. The early thin-gauge-chassis Miura P400 is said to have featured in publications and in the film La Leçon Particulière in period and is being offered from single ownership since 1979.
Aside from its aesthetic appeal, the engineering underneath its skin was remarkable, with a steel monocoque and transverse-mounted 4.0-litre V-12 engine making it the fastest production car of its day. Perhaps the most extraordinary part of the Miura was not its looks or performance, but the fact that this legendary car was the creation of four of the greatest engineers and designers all in their relative youth: Marcello Gandini, Gian Paolo Dallara, Bob Wallace, and Giotto Bizzarrini.
Chassis no. 3111 was the 57th built and was delivered on 2 September 1967 to the Parisian Lamborghini agent Cars Paris Monceau to be used as their demonstrator. Painted in Giallo with a Bleu interior, 3111 must have been an extraordinary sight on the Paris streets of the late sixties; in fact, there is wonderful footage of what is most likely to be this Miura driving around some of Paris’s most famous boulevards, as it is believed to have been used for the film La Leçon Particulière. Other likely period appearances were for French magazine road tests with Moteurs and Auto-Journal.
Maarten ten Holder, Head of Europe, RM Sotheby’s said:
“The cancellation of the Essen auction is, of course, disappointing for our team, however, it is a necessary decision to make well ahead of the scheduled time in order safeguard the health of the collector car community and our staff and adhere to public restrictions.
“We will divert the hard work we put into organising the second annual Essen auction into the revised online-only format, which has proved to be a great success in recent auctions we’ve held in North America. The concept of buying a car online is familiar to so many people now, and we will make the process as easy as possible with the same level of access to our specialists, our client services team, and to the research and information that we’d normally provide at every live auction.”
During 1969 it was traded through French dealer Thépenier to the TV producer Gilbert Larriaga. Seven years later it was registered in Alsace, and by 1979 it was sold by Monsieur ERB Claude to Monsieur Petitjean, who has kept it in storage in his collection ever since. Currently fitted with a correct-type early engine, number 1067 from chassis no. 01072, this wonderful early P400 presents a great opportunity to restore a historic Miura.
Cars already announced to go under the hammer in the new online-only event include a 1939 Bugatti Type 57 Cabriolet, a 1981 Lancia 037 Stradale, and a 2014 Aston Martin V8 Zagato. In addition, also originally billed for sale is The Petitjean Collection, a diverse single-owner group of nearly 100 cars—offered entirely without reserve—including models from the 1950s through to the ‘90s, assembled by ex-racing driver and enthusiastic collector, Monsieur Marcel Petitjean, in Strasbourg, France over the last 50 years.
Other cars range from an incredible pre-war Bugatti to an extremely rare Aston Martin V8 Zagato, as well as the nearly 100 sought-after cars presented from the single-owner Petitjean Collection and offered entirely without reserve.