5 collector cars to put in your garage this week

This week’s selection of gems from the Classic Driver Market include a gorgeous ground-effect Formula 1 car, a one-off Anglo-Italo sports car and a particularly special modern-era Aston Martin racecar…

Grande Bruno 

Believe it or not, there was a time when Formula 1 cars were not all ugly as sin. The advent of the ground-effect era in the late 1970s and early 1980s, in particular, was a sweet spot with designers relishing the challenge of designing cars around this exciting new technology. Take this Alfa Romeo 179, for example, which was raced by Bruno Giacomelli in the 1980 Formula 1 season. From its bulbous nose and delicate front wings to the sheer side skirts and the diminutive rear wing, we think it looks mega, particularly resplendent in the Marlboro colours. And you can bet your bottom dollar that the Italian V12 sounds every bit as good as the bodywork looks. 

A cut above 

This stunning 2010 Aston Martin DBRS9 not only has the distinction of being the 26th and final example built by the Works, but it’s also the only one built to race in the GTC category of the prestigious Intercontinental Le Mans Championship. That means it was in a higher state of tune than its GT3 siblings, its ‘G-Spec’ V12 kicking out a punchy 650bhp and mated to a proper sequential gearbox. After its first and only race in China, the car was retired and displayed in its owner’s personal collection for a number of years before being acquired by an Australian owner who commissioned a sympathetic recommissioning. The beautifully preserved racer has now returned to its homeland and is ready to hit the track once again. There are certainly more nondescript cars with which to enter the burgeoning Endurance Legends series. 

Nobody puts Spider in the corner 

We think it’s fair to say the Ferrari 360 Modena has not aged quite as gracefully as its predecessor, the timeless F355. However, that’s not to say Maranello’s early-2000s V8 should be written off – what it lacks in visual drama it more than makes up for in dynamic and aural character. Our pick of the range would be a manual Spider, so we can hear the spine-tingling howl of the flat-plane V8 in all its unadulterated glory. This red-and-black example from 2004 is currently for sale in Paris and presents very nicely indeed having only covered some 30,000 miles. 

Pirana 

If you’re wondering why this sleek Jaguar-badged sports car looks miraculously like the Lamborghini Espada, it’s because it was designed by the same designer, Marcello Gandini, for the same styling house, Bertone. When the motoring staff at the Daily Telegraph decided to imagine their dream car in 1967, it’s fair to say they went all out, persuading Sir William Lyons to sell them an E-type 2+2 chassis and Bertone to style the body. The one-off Pirana, as it was christened, caused quite the scene at the 1967 Earls Court Motor Show where it was revealed – so much so that it was subsequently shown in Turin, Montreal and New York. The Anglo-Italian coupé will be sold by RM Sotheby’s in Monterey… 

Cult classic 

The Lotus Elise has come a long way since its introduction back in 1996. This one from 2017 is an extreme, track-focused 250 Cup model and we’d wager that it’s every bit as quick over a narrow British B road than any of the fancy hybrid hypercars. We’ve also chosen this car as a teaser for a story we’ve got coming in the not too distant future about Elisa Artioli, who is the namesake of the cult-classic British sports car. Keep your eyes peeled! 

Photos: Dylan Miles Ltd, L’Art De L’Automobile, Loris Kessel Auto SA, RM Sotheby’s, Image Automotive