A unique Bugatti Type 57 Atalante by Gangloff will join the only Jaguar XK150 by Bertone thought to remain on the road at the Concours of Elegance 2020 on the gardens of the beautiful Hampton Court Palace 4-6 September.
In just one week’s time, the Concours of Elegance will showcase some of the most astonishing coachbuilt automotive masterpieces in history including one-off and ultra-rare motorcars, Formula One racers throughout the ages, modern-day hypercars and some spectacular Le Mans 24 Hours winners.
Jaguar XK150 S Bertone
The Jaguar XK150 featured styling reminiscent of its desirable XK120 and 140 predecessors while featuring a far more contemporary late-1950s design. It originally came as a fixed-head coupé, a drophead coupé and a roadster, but in a few rare cases, it was given bespoke coachwork from famous design houses. This particular Jaguar, S 834365, is just one of three XK150s that were sent as bare chassis to Bertone in Turin, to be bodied as prototype fixed-head coupés.
Each had slightly different styling by Franco Scaglione, who was responsible for arguably some of the most striking cars of the 20th century, from the Alfa Romeo B.A.T. cars to the Lamborghini 350GTV prototype and the Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale.
The Bertones were reportedly built as prototypes for a possible XK150 replacement – a couple of years before the E-type would fill that space. Interestingly, the cars all had a delicate ‘XKE’ badge on their rear flanks. This XK150 Bertone is car no. 2, and its chassis was made on August 15, 1957, and dispatched to Italy the following month. It’s the only example known to still exist, with the other two cars had apparently been unseen for decades.
Bugatti Type 57 Atalante Gangloff
Many consider the Type 57 to be the pinnacle of Bugatti’s touring models. Revealed in 1934, it was the first car built under the direction of Jean Bugatti. He was also instrumental in the design of the new Type 57 engine, a 3.3-litre straight-eight producing 140bhp at a time when the equivalent Bentley figure was a ‘paltry’ 115bhp.
The biggest selling point over and above the mechanical design, however, was the stunning body styling drawn up by Jean and in-house carpenter-wheelwright, Joseph Walter. The Ventoux two-door, Galibier four-door and Atalante Coupé were later joined by the Aravis Coupé and the open Stelvio, from renowned local coachbuilder Gangloff. This Type 57 Atalante, 57633, was ordered in February 1938 by wealthy French industrialist Fernand Crouzet.
He asked Gangloff to create a one-off, and its unique features included long rear wings, a boot lid-mounted spare-wheel mount, single back window, special bumpers and disc wheels. The car survived World War Two unscathed via several changes of owner, and post-war it was refurbished and put to use as transport for the French Embassy in London.
Meet ‘Mr. Fred’, one of only two Bentley 4.5-Litre Drophead sports coupés still in existence with bodywork by Salmons & Sons, the legendary Newport Pagnell coachworks that was to become the home of Aston Martin. What’s more, this beautiful 1928 aluminium-bodied automobile was the personal car of company owner Mr Fred Salmons – giving rise to its affectionate name.
Founded in Buckinghamshire in 1830 by Joseph Salmons, the coachworks progressed from creating high-quality horse-drawn coaches and dog carts to bodying some of the earliest and finest cars for all makes of automobile chassis from 1898 onward. Its bespoke workmanship was much coveted. This 4.5-Litre’s front wings are a wonderful example of the type of elegance and form in aluminium for which Salmons was known, while its distinctive mother of pearl instrument panel is a thing of delicate beauty.
‘Passion of a Lifetime’ Auction
New for Concours of Elegance 2020 is the addition of the auction of the year, courtesy of Gooding & Company. The Gooding & Co team will be showcasing 15 vehicles, expected to fetch around £50m altogether, crowned by the most important competition Bugatti in history, a Type 59 Sports.