Close your eyes and imagine opening a deserted garage door, only to find a forgotten four-wheeled treasure sitting there in perfect condition. What would it be? We have a feeling we'll get all sorts of answers in the comments section, but for many enthusiasts, the answer would be, without hesitation, the Bugatti Type 57S Atalante. And that's exactly what the children of the late (and appropriately named) Dr. Harold Carr found in their father's garage.
The Atalante is among the most beautiful, the most coveted and the most iconic of Bugattis ever produced. Not to be confused with the even rarer Atlantic, of which only two of the original three remain in existence, the 57S Atalante was made in a limited run of 17 examples, and a quarter of them are housed in a museum in rural France. This one went missing half a century ago, only now to be found again. It was originally owned by Earl Howe, first president of the British Racing Drivers' Club, and changed hands several times before the reclusive Dr. Carr mothballed it. Estimated values for the car are all over the map, with values as high as £6 million (about $8.8M USD) being discussed. Naturally, as rare as it is for a classic like this to change hands, its real value will be determined by how much a well-heeled collector is willing to pay for it when it rolls onto the block in February at Bonhams' "Retromobile" auction in Paris. Follow the jump for all the details.