Vintage & Classics

Take a look inside the RM Sotheby's garage of highly collectable cars

The Peterson Automotive Museum recently hosted an inside peek at the RM Sotheby's garage.

Photo courtesy of The Petersen Automotive Museum

Few are invited into the RM Sotheby's garage in Southern California. Consider it the auction houses's holding pen for highly sought after vehicle that will be heading to an auction block soon, or are available via a discreet, private sale. The Peterson Automotive Museum recently hosted a behind-the-scenes look at the garage and its contents via YouTube, where you don't need to prove your net worth to gaze at the beauties.

Hosted by RM Sotheby's car specialist Alexander Weaver, the 10-minute video features some extremely rare machinery. The collection at the garage is mostly made up of sports cars.

Weaver kicks off the video by introducing a 1961 Alfa Romeo Zagato, which spent most of its life in Switzerland before sitting in the RM Sotheby's lobby. It was owned by the gentleman who owned multiple exotic car dealerships in Zurich, Karl Foitek. Before passing away in 2019, Foitek raced the car extensively.

Two unique Shelby Cobras live side-by-side in the garage's main showroom area. The 4000 and 6000 series vehicles are bodied in copper and polished bronze, respectively. They both give the driver access to about 650 horsepower and have a five-speed manual transmission. Weaver, who has driven many of the cars that are auctioned by the company, says that these two Cobras run and drive "really, really nicely."

The showroom also features a Mercedes-Benz SL 300 Roadster and a Series 1 Ferrari 250 GT Pininfarina. The Ferrari cabriolet is owned by a gentleman who drove it for about 20 years and invested some money in making it better to drive on rallies by adding disc brakes on all four corners and upgraded suspension components.

The SL 300 is fitted with the "more desirable" large drum brake which, according to Weaver, makes it stop better than earlier examples of the model. It rides on a reproduction set of wheels and is finished in its original white paint over green interior color scheme.

Across the courtyard, Weaver takes viewers into another part of the facility where vehicles coming up for auction are located including the Mercedes 300 SL's hard top, which includes the car's original hard top crate; 1964 Ferrari 250 GTL Lusso; 1995 Porsche 911 (993) Carrera RS; 1960 Alfa Romeo Giulietta; 1965 Jaguar E-type; and a 1951 Porsche 356, among others.

More modern collectibles are also able to be seen, including a BMW that is currently up for auction online.

Watch the full episode below.


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Rare V8 roadster

This BMW Z8 is worth its price tag

The BMW Z8 is a modern classic.

Bring a Trailer

We could spend all day bemoaning car auctions' impact on vehicle pricing. Sites like Bring a Trailer and Cars and Bids invite frenzied buyers to offer wild sums of money for cars that might otherwise be considered ordinary. Some vehicles on those sites, however, are worth the coin, and we think this 2001 BMW Z8 is one of them. The 22,000-mile car's auction is almost over at the time of this post, and its sky-high price tag is actually warranted. The BMW Z8 is exceedingly rare to begin with, but this car's color combination of black over tan leather makes it even more of a unicorn, as only 229 were made in that combination.

BMW Z8 The Z8 took inspiration from BMW's classic roadsters.Bring a Trailer

Even the car's designer is noteworthy. Though he may be focusing on his own electric vehicle brand now, Henrik Fisker's 12-year run at BMW was the stuff of legend. Fisker's work included the design for the Z8, as well as contributions of the original X5 SUV, which is now part of an expansive BMW SUV and crossover lineup.

The Z8 reached legend status when it shuttled Pierce Brosnan's James Bond in The World Is Not Enough, but the cars were (and are) worthy of standing on their own. Under the hood, BMW installed a 394-horsepower 4.9-liter V8, which gave the car a claimed 0-62 mph time of just 4.2 seconds. That power reached the rear wheels through a six-speed manual transmission, and this car has had maintenance performed to keep the drivetrain purring for years to come.

2001 BMW Z8 This Z8's color combination makes it exceedingly rare.Bring a Trailer

If you're wondering where this Z8's current bid price of $162,500 lands on the car's overall value spectrum, there's some good news, depending on how you view spending six figures on a car. Hagerty estimates that a Z8 in good condition should draw around $155,000, while a car in excellent condition should get $199,000. This car's mileage and condition match up with its price, which falls on the lower end of that range, and should allow it to be an actual driver for the right person. After all, what's the fun of buying a car just for display?

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Musical artist H.E.R. has worked with Honda designers to customize a Civic Type R.

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co. Inc.
H.E.R. graced the stage at the 2021 Honda Civic Tour but before that happens, the R&B singer-songwriter has put her stamp on a custom-designed Honda Civic Type R. This one-off is part of a longstanding tradition of Civic Tour headliners designing a custom Civic.

The unique-looking model is a reflection of H.E.R.'s personal values. Nuance, subtlety, and "sharing your heart" are held high. This all starts with the car's exterior where a deep black matte finish washes over the model while chameleon-tinted headlamps and windows, purple brake calipers and nebula painted trim are presented as intriguing highlights.

Designers worked to customize the cabin as well, adding nebula painted accents and special LED interior lighting that changes colors based on music and sound inside the vehicle by featuring custom colors, moods, brightness levels and rotating color patterns, adjustable by a smartphone.

H.E.R. Unveils Custom ‘Honda Civic Type R’ Presented by the 2021 Honda Civic Tour

"One of the things that drew me toward the Honda Civic Tour was knowing that I'd be able to design my own vehicle, and out of all Civics, I picked the pinnacle Civic Type R," said H.E.R. "Infusing my personality into all aspects of my performances, and also expressing it through my favorite products, is something that I am passionate about. So being able to create and share my custom Honda Civic Type R with my fans is just so special to me."

H.E.R.'s custom Civic Type R joins Honda vehicles designed by past Civic Tour headliners, including Maroon 5, OneRepublic, Demi Lovato, blink-182, Black Eyed Peas, One Direction, Charlie Puth and more.

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