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Wow. This is kind of a letdown. What was expected to be among the most valuable vehicles ever sold at auction, the Auto Union Type D, has been pulled at the 11th hour. Auction house Christie's made the announcement that they had postponed the Auto Union's sale "pending further exploration into the car's race history." No other explanation was given. The Auto Union GP car was expected to draw insane bids at the upcoming Retromobile auction in Paris.
While we wouldn't want to make any assumptions about the vehicle's authenticity, that is frequently the cause of lots being pulled or vehicles failing to attract interest from bidders. Hemmings relates the words of Philip Powell at Classical Drive who supports the notion that the postponement could be a sign that the Type D is not 100% kosher.

The car's history is known, from being totally rebuilt after being reduced to just a driveline in an accident, to being found in the former Soviet Union, but the questions can linger in the minds of potential owners. It should be noted, however, that Christies is investigating the car's race history, not its authenticity, per se. We saw something similar in Arizona last month when a rare Ferrari Dino SP failed to crack the $1 million mark and didn't meet its reserve, going unsold. The car had been well-documented, but because it had been nearly totaled in a racing incident, the rebuilt car can sometimes raise doubts among buyers who would rather have the genuine article than one rebuilt by a non-factory team years after its birth.

[Source: Hemmings]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      *sigh* Who cares? This car is a wonderful piece of engineering and impressive in its own right, regardless of any race history... at least it should be. But I bet that it will never see a racetrack again and end up as a collector's trophy among dozens of other cars in some dark garage.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Yeah, I'm sure it's 100% authentic after wintering in the Soviet Union- I don't understand the big difference between this and a kit car if the only thing stock mighta coulda been its driveline.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I'm all for cars being raced and used to love attending Goodwood revival where you can see GTO's and Aston prototypes battling side by side, but this is the best part of £10,000,000 worth of car which takes the best part of 4 hours to get ready for racing, it's not just a case of jumping in and turning the key. Also its not like you pop down to your local German car parts specialist and pick up spare parts.

      I'm sure it will make a couple of runs at things like the Festival of speed where it can be seen, like the Type D's and C's that I saw there a few years ago now.

      • 8 Years Ago
      Well in my town we have one in a motor museum
      ( http:///www.motormuzejs.lv )
      It had a similar fate , it was saved from Moscow ZIL factory in a " subbotnik" cleanup event. Car was destined for a scrap metal as a "state secrets containing trophy inventory" , but was saved by automotive enthusiast Viktors Kulbergs. It was transported by an autostop from Moscow to Riga , then partially restored and later completely restored by Crostwaithe & Gardiner to a racing condition. Whole museum was built in out town because of this one ultra-rare car.