If you were to create a line up showcasing some of the best work from the world's finest car makers, we’d most likely guess the selection would look a little something like what long-standing friends of Classic Driver and sellers of pure dream machines Thiesen Hamburg have collated.
From gloriously-specified golden-era Ferraris, to a late 1920s Bugatti that embodied the brand’s relentless passion for speed, even when racing was still in its infancy, each of these cars will take centre stage at Thiesen’s stand, located at Stand R063 in Hall 1, at the eagerly awaited Retromoble 2024, which runs from January 31st to February 4th. Marking the startline for what is likely to be a jam-packed show season, the event will be hosted in the Paris expo Porte de Versailles, where thousands of collector and classic cars will be the talking point for the many visitors across the five days. Let’s take a closer look at the automotive treasures Thiesen will be bringing…
1965 Porsche 904/6 Works Racing Car - 1 of 5 original 6-cylinder cars
Ferdinand Porsche might be best known for his iconic 911 design, but perhaps one of his more underrated designs was the 904 GTS Coupe. Not only was this sleek, aerodynamic two-seater sports car an absolute looker, it was also the first Porsche to boast a lightweight fibreglass body. This example is one of just five works cars fitted from factory with a six-cylinder engine, and competed in both the 24 hours of Le Mans and the Nürburgring 1000 km in 1965.
1958 Porsche 550 A Spyder
Next we have Porsche’s first real racing car, the 550 Spyder. First unveiled at the Paris Motor Show way back in 1953, the 550 immediately impressed onlookers with its sharp styling and incredible weight, a mere 550kgs. This low weight, in combination with the now iconic Type 547 engine, helped the 550 to swiftly accrue multiple accolades in its class on all the world's major racetracks. One of approximately 40 works 550 A Spyders built, this example is accompanied by extensive documentation including its race history.
1963 Ferrari 250 GT/L Berlinetta Scaglietti
Heading to the swinging 1960s, we with this fantastic Ferrari 250 GT/L, one of just 350 examples ever created. The car was completed back in May of 1963 by "Carrozzeria Scaglietti", and was shipped in 1967 to New York. There, Peter Gabriel would take ownership, after which this prancing horse would remain in his stable for a staggering 44 years! This example benefitted from a frame-off restoration by Brandoli in Italy and boasts Ferrari Classiche certification.
1967 Aston Martin DB6 Vantage Volante - The Paris Motor Show Car
While 007’s Silver Birch DB5 might take the crown for the world’s most famous silver-shaded Aston Martin, this DB6 Vantage Volante holds a firm second place. This was the very example that was first shown at the Paris Motor Show in 1967, and was delivered to France from new. In total, a mere 30 examples of the DB6 Volante exist in Vantage guise, with just 5 of those examples being left-hand-drive like this one. If you’re after some mid-century Aston Martin royalty for your collection, this is the one to own!
1927 Bugatti Type 37 A “Grand Prix Car”
The penultimate car in our whirlwind tour of collector heaven is one of Ettore Bugatti’s triumphant Type 37s, finished in the must-have French Racing Blue. This hardened example holds extensive documentation, including a rich racing history from the day it rolled off the production line. Surpisingly, considering its racing pedigree, the car still holds German road registration and FIVA Passport, making it incredibly usable!
1992 Porsche 964 Turbo S “Lightweight”
Back in 1992, Porsche kicked the year off with a bang by presenting a rather special prototype at the Geneva Motor Show, the Porsche 964 Turbo S Lightweight. It was a car stripped of its creature comforts but loaded with raw power from its 3.3-litre turbocharged engine. The result was one of the brand’s finest driver’s cars. One of just 86 examples ever made, this striking silver example has covered just 56,000 km and is about as cool as a 1990s Porsche can get.
If you’re attending this year’s Retromobile, be sure to check out the plethora of machinery at Thiesen’s stand, R063 in Hall 1, or check out the incredible array of cars listed in the Classic Driver market.