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Lagonda Rapide sells for record amount at Bonhams’ Frederiksen Collection sale

The 1939 Lagonda LG6 Rapide was one of 48 cars sold by Bonhams on behalf of Danish gentleman Henrik Frederiksen on 26 September at his 16th century manor house Lyngsbækgaard, the former residence of the King of Denmark, in the Mols Bjerge national park in Ebeltoft.

The Rapide was the 1940 New York Auto Show car and one of only six long wheelbase examples built, It had been totally restored to concours-winning condition in 2007. Its selling price of £538,033 was £128,033 more than estimated, and more than three times higher than any other recent auction price for the model. Until now, the highest price we’ve seen was for a 1963 LG6 that went for £154,094 at Artcurial’s 2014 Paris Retromobile sale.

The highest price of the day was for a 1930 Duesenberg Model J Disappearing Top Roadster, which was sold to a US telephone bidder for £1,755,689. It was a matching numbers car with original coachwork and ownership history from new, and had been first owned by Shirley Carter Burden, great grandson on C Cornelius Vanderbilt.

Eleven Rolls-Royce cars sold, between them making more than £3.5 million. The highlight of the selection was a 1914 Rolls-Royce 40/50 Silver Ghost Skiff previously owned by Robert Barrymore that sold for £736,256.

Also outstanding was the 1937 Rolls-Royce Phantom III drophead coupe first owned Fritz Mandl, Austrian arms manufacturer and husband of Hedwig Lamarr prior to her Hollywood career as Hedy Lamarr. The four-door cabriolet with bodywork by Vanden Plas had been restored to concours-winning condition over 10 years; it sold to a Danish bidder for £407,773.

Assembled over several decades by Mr Frederiksen, the collection was one of Europe’s finest, featuring models from Bentley, Cadillac, Duesenberg, Hispano-Suiza, Horch, Jaguar, Lagonda, Maybach, Mercedes-Benz, Rolls-Royce and Stutz.

‘There was an excellent atmosphere in the room, with everyone enjoying the day,’ said Malcolm Barber, who conducted the sale. ‘Auctions are a serious business, but they’re also excellent fun, and I think the people who came along very much enjoyed seeing these phenomenal cars, and watching the prices soar.’

Henrik Frederiksen was delighted with the sale, he said: ‘I now have to say goodbye to my wonderful cars, but I couldn’t be happier as I know each will bring joy to their new owner.

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By Claire Evans

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