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Nearly 100 classics spanning 99 years of car production on offer at Bonhams Greenwich sale

Ninety-five classic cars, covering every decade of motoring from the last 99 years, will be on offer at Bonhams’ Greenwich Concours D’Elegance auction in Connecticut, USA, on 31 May. The oldest is a 1902 Oldsmobile Model R Runabout that’s in need of some TLC, and the youngest is a 2001 Bentley Azure with less than 15,000 miles on its odometer. Both are expected to sell for around £50,000.

The highest price is expected to be for a fabulously opulent looking 1938 Bugatti 57C Stelvio convertible. It has a complete history from new researched by marque authority Pierre-Yves Laugier and was owned for more than 40 years by US Bugatti collector Miles Coverdale. It’s expected to sell for around £600,000.

Cars from the estate of another well-known US collector, Geoffrey Howard, are also in the sale, including a rare 1935 SS 90 roadster. It is number 10 of only 23 such models built by the Swallow Sidecar and Coachbuilding Company, in Liverpool, UK, the company run by William Walmsley and William Lyons that’s credited with helping to shape future Jaguar models. Although in need of restoration, it’s sale estimate is around £400,000.

More modern classics are also well represented at the sale. One of the most appealing is a 1968 Mazda Cosmo – the first production model from the Japanese carmaker to be fitted with a rotary engine. The 110s coupe on offer is a Series Middle car produced between the Series I and II models, with some features from each. It’s expected to sell for more than £100,000.

If you’re after something more affordable, and more practical, then another American classic may appeal. The last Checker Cab to have been in active service in New York City is being offered with an estimate of just under £10,000. Although it’s covered 1 million miles, it’s on its third engine, and has been preserved in 'as retired' condition. Nicknamed Janie by its owner, taxi driver Earl Johnson, who drove it for 21 years, the car is believed to have transported many celebrity passengers including Jacqueline Onassis, Muhammad Ali and Walter Cronkite.

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By Claire Evans

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