The annual Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este in Lake Como, Italy each May is considered by many to be the highlight of the classic car calendar. No less enthralling than the actual event is the accompanying sale staged by RM Auctions, the world’s foremost resource for investment-grade vehicles. At this year’s auction, held on the grounds of the spectacular Villa Erba on the shores of Lake Como on May 25, RM plans to present 40 of the world’s finest luxury automobiles representing “the ultimate in elegance, sophistication, rarity, and provenance.” Early entries for the stunning sale include a 1920s Rolls-Royce with a prestigious royal provenance, a rare 1960s Ferrari, and an important pre-war Bugatti.
Sure to generate fierce bidding is a 1929 Rolls-Royce Phantom I Open Tourer with coachwork by Barker. Originally a motor show car, it was later sent to Kenya, then a British colony, where it served as the official transport for the then Princess Elizabeth and her husband Prince Phillip during her state visit to the country in 1952. It was on that visit that Elizabeth learned of the death of her father, King George VI, and upon returning home she was crowned Queen Elizabeth II. The historically important car, finished in yellow paintwork with a green leather interior, was displayed at the Windsor Castle Concours of Elegance in the UK as part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations. It’s expected to fetch up to about $620,000.
Also on offer is a fantastic 1962 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB Coupe with Pininfarina coachwork, one of only 36 examples produced that year, expected to bring in up to about $2.7 million; a beautiful 1930 Bugatti Type 46 Superprofile Coupe, often described as one of the most elegant, imposing, and luxurious of all Bugattis, estimated at up to about $1.4 million; and a 1947 Cisitalia 202 MM ‘Nuvolari’ Spider, one of 25 built, that competed in the 1947 Mille Miglia and is expected to fetch up to about $720,000.