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Delage opened its doors in 1905, quickly proving itself an engineering powerhouse among early 20th century European automobile manufacturers. After just three years in business, the rising French marque began winning Grand Prix, and captured a 1st Place win at the 1914 Indianapolis 500. Just weeks later, the world was plunged into global conflict, and Delage spent WWI occupying its machines, tools, and workers with the manufacture of munitions.

In the 1920s, Delage introduced the stunning 2 LCV Grand Prix racer, a mechanical masterpiece whose four-cam, two-liter V-12 helped set the stage for the modern race engine while also providing a deep well of inspiration to a young Enzo Ferrari. This fabulous two-liter engine was the first to deliver 100 bhp per liter. When the GP formula was reduced to 1.5 liters, the new eight-cylinder model, the 15 S 8, found legendary success in the 1927 Grand Prix, earning Robert Benoist and Delage the world championship. In another landmark, their D6 Grand Prix car placed 2nd Overall at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1939. Astonishingly, and as proof of the inherent strength of that car’s design, a revised D6 GP racer would repeat this performance a full decade later in the car offered here, finishing directly behind the winning Ferrari 166.

One of five postwar-built D6 GP racers, this car, chassis 880004, represents the most successful of this final group of Delage competition machines and placed 2nd Overall at Le Mans in 1949. Other important finishes for 880004 include 2nd at that same year’s 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps and 7th at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1950.

Retired shortly afterward and rebodied as a sleek aluminum-paneled coupe by French carrosserie Pichon-Parat, the car was owned by a pair of American airmen serving in France, the latter of whom returned home with the car in the mid-to-late 1960s. Though the car was driven on the street and participated in various club-level races, its Le Mans gearing made it unsuitable for these tasks, and it was tucked away in a New England barn for nearly 20 years.

Following acquisition of the Delage in 1996 from noted enthusiast Charles LeMaitre, the Mullin Collection commissioned renowned Bugatti and French exotics specialist Jim Stranberg of High Mountain Classics in Colorado to restore 880004 to its as-raced appearance. Now wearing a replica of its original body, the car presents much as it did when driven to podium at Le Mans and Spa-Francorchamps. In more recent years Peter Mullin and his family enjoyed driving the Delage competitively at events such as the Monterey Historic Races. Arguably among the most significant and successful Delage racers ever built, 880004 represents a very exciting proposition.

*Please note that this vehicle is sold on a Bill of Sale.

Gooding & Company
1517 20th Street
Santa Monica  90404  California
United States
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+1 (310) 899-1960