The 1948 Dandy Grand Luxe Delahaye to be Auctioned Off
Scottsdale, Ariz. (December 7, 2017)— Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auctions returns to Scottsdale, Ariz. January 17-21, 2018 at the Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. With more than 800 cars crossing the block, the Scottsdale-based company is excited to announce the addition of the 1948 Dandy Grand Luxe Delahaye.
Delahaye automobile was an automotive manufacturing company founded by Émile Delahaye in 1894, in his hometown Tours, France. The Delahaye 135, designed by young engineer Jean Francois, was produced from 1935 until 1954 in many different body styles. The Parisian company was somewhat unusual among Europe’s automotive elite, choosing to offer the buyer no factory bodywork whatsoever. Artists like Figoni et Falaschi, Henri Chapron, Letourner et Marchand, Saoutchik, Guillore, Franay, and Graber favored the 135 for the fine proportions of its chassis.
The Delahaye 135 was successful as a racing car during the late 1930s, setting the all-time record at the Ulster Tourist Trophy. It placed second and third in the Mille Miglia in 1936, took second and third place at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1937 and placed first, second and fourth in the 1938 24 Hours of Le Mans. This 1948 model, similar to the 135Ms that the Paris-based firm had built before the outbreak of World War II, is essentially a pre-war French luxury car. The hand-built Henri Chapron Carrossier body is in a style known as the Dandy Grand Luxe. In the mid-1970s the car was being offered for sale by a Texas owner.
“I always have liked them,” says current owner, Kent Shodeen. “At that time, they weren’t as expensive. People hadn’t caught on to them yet.”
He bought the car and parked it in his garage, where it sat for a quarter-century. The Delahaye was together, but it was a wreck. Restorer Dan McMahon, the owner of International Auto Restoration in Oak Lawn, Illinois, knew that new bumpers and headlamps would not be a phone call away, but he didn’t realize just how much the hand-built Henri Chapron Carrossier bodywork had deteriorated, or how much would have to be rebuilt and fabricated
The car’s Cotal four-speed preselector gearbox was restored by French car expert Alan Taylor in Escondido, California. Taylor was one of the many leading experts working on the restoration project. Others included ace mechanic Mike Gregory, FX Engines LLC of Mokena, Illinois, and Brent’s Upholstery of Sterling, Illinois.
This car made its first appearance ever at the 2006 Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance, where it captured Best in Class in Class I: Post War European. The Delahaye was also invited to the prestigious 2007 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.
Russo and Steele is known across the globe as “The World’s Most Exciting Collector Automobile Auction”. Year in and year out the event brings forth the most complete collection of fine collector automobiles available anywhere during Arizona Car Week. The annual auction will feature their well-established “auction in the round” format with five days. Russo and Steele places buyers, sellers and enthusiastic spectators up close and personal with vehicles. This event features some of the most exclusive, select and diverse grouping of automobiles available anywhere in the world. Bidder registration is just $200 and includes admission for preview day and four days of Auction in the Round action for the bidder and one lucky guest. For more information about Russo and Steele, visit www.russoandsteele.com.
About Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auctions
One of the nation’s premier collector-car auction houses, Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auctions continues to set records and attract a discerning global clientele. In addition to its reputation for offering stellar collector automobiles, the unique high-energy auction experience is simply unattainable anywhere else. Auctions include a signature event in Scottsdale, Arizona every January, followed by June at Newport Beach, and August at Monterey, California. For additional information, please visit www.russoandsteele.com or call 602.252.2697.