Market Finds – Lamborghini’s pre-VW swansong and the ultimate Porsche 911
1999 Lamborghini Diablo
This was the last Lamborghini to roll off the Sant’Agata production line prior to the New Millennium. The significance goes further – shortly into the year 2000, the Volkswagen Group (which had taken control of Lamborghini several months earlier) began to replace the marque’s typically Italian way of working with its Teutonic efficiency. This original Diablo SV, then, represents Lamborghini at its most bold and unrestrained – when it built supercars that were dreamt about by 10-year-olds and middle-aged businessmen alike.
1982 Aston Martin Lagonda by Tickford
Some cars stand the test of time and some cars, well… don’t. But that’s not to say we should write them off. No era better embodies this than the excessive 1980s – take this Aston Martin Lagonda, for example, with frankly outrageous bodywork by Tickford. Resembling a vessel more suited to the water than the road, Tickford’s modifications to the Lagonda’s already radical body added ‘substantial’ cost to the car, perhaps explaining why only six examples were built on the standard-wheelbase car. We believe it's gone full-circle in terms of coolness, even if there's not a curve in sight. In any case, it’ll no doubt prove a talking point at this weekend’s London Classic Car Show, where it will take pride of place on Nicholas Mee’s stand.
1958 Porsche 597 Jagdwagen
The 597 Jagdwagen was Porsche’s bid to provide Germany’s Federal Army with a reliable mode of transport. Ultimately, Auto Union’s much cheaper DKW Munga won the contract, and just 71 Jagdwagens were built, 49 of which were for the civilian market. Thought to be the most original example in existence, this 1958 597 Jagdwagen is also the most intriguing of Jerry Seinfeld’s collection of 18 Porsches, due to be auctioned by Gooding & Company at its Amelia Island sale later this month.
1955 Lotus Mk VIII
Given how primitive the understanding of aerodynamics was in the 1950s, this 1955 Lotus Mk VIII looks positively sophisticated. One of nine built by Colin Chapman’s then-youthful Lotus team, of which six remain, it boasts matching numbers, its original body and eligibility into top-tier events such as the Goodwood Revival and the Monaco Historique. One of Chapman’s first landmark designs, it’s reportedly ‘as brisk today as it plainly was in period’.
1991 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 Lightweight
If you’ve never heard of the Porsche 911 Carrera 4 Lightweight, fear not – the rarest 964 of them all is often overlooked by even the most serious of Porsche enthusiasts and collectors. Designed by Jürgen Barth and built at the Customer Sports Department at Weissach, the car was destined for a single-make race series. But the Carrera Cup – featuring the 964 RS – soon escalated in worldwide popularity, rendering the Lightweight obsolete. As such, just 20 were built, of which this car is the last. The list of modifications is vast, including adjustable suspension, an RS-spec engine, exhaustive weight-saving measures, and an adjustable four-wheel-drive system from the Paris-Dakar-winning 953. We think the nicest touch is the side-mounted oil-filler cap, a nod to the 911 S from 1972. Weighing in at a scant 1,090kg, could this be the ultimate 911?
Photos: Dutton Garage, Silverstone Auctions, Movendi, Nicholas Mee, Gooding & Co