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Fräuleins fettling on friday 13th.

Frauleins fettling on friday 13th.When a reader asked for help identifying the car above, we quickly thought it would be an easy and fun piece of detective work.  One caption mentioned Bugatti, and then a friend who knows a thing or two about Alfa Romeos got all excited and suggested it may be a long lost Alfa P2 with road-going bodywork ( because of the distinctive filler caps.)  The same enthusiast then wondered about a Jano designed Fiat?
The correspondence then turned to the underskirt ( on the CAR gentlemen, on the CAR!) and whilst gazing at this lovely sports car's body we soon realised that it screamed 'Amilcar'.  The rear wheels and brake drums should have told us straightaway.
We blame the distractions, which is, after all,  why we share the picture with you this friday the thirteenth. The date is associated with bad luck, but these two elegant girls were lucky, because they had been chosen to pose for the photograph  taken by photographer Heinz von Perckhammer . 
Perkhammer was better known for his photographs of nudes, but this picture was for a 1935 issue of magazine 'Sieben Tage' and during our investigations we came across this delightful study of the same car....

And another image which helps identify the model - CGS or CGSs ?

Perhaps YOU can tell us more details about the car, the ladies or the photographer?
Despite the date today, we wish you luck, and plenty of it.

( Ed.  Thank you to Stefano Bortoletto for his definitive identification of the car - a Fiat 501 S with Bertone body. )


Text Robin Batchelor,  pictures by Heinz von Perckhammer 1895 - 1965.
Friday, 13 January 2017 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

A front wheel drive mystery?

A front wheel drive mystery?
We received this photo from Peter Skofic, who is curious to know more about the car: "At the first glance the car looks like Citroen but what puzzles me at this particular car is the front suspension, especially on its left side which makes me thinking about front wheel drive. This photo was made in Maribor (Slovenia) in 1960 at the ceremony when fresh students got "baptized". The picture was taken by my uncle Danilo Skofic who was a professional photographer. At that time I was only 8 years old and I did not participate at this rally/ceremony. I am enclosing herewith some additional pictures from the same period too. Four of them show Tatra 11 (or 12?) at the same occasion (see also a beautiful DKW Schellaster in back of one of the photos!), and the fifth one shows a car of three French students (Citroen?) who travelled from France to Istanbul and stopped in Maribor to make a short brake. At the right side of this car there is parked Peugeot 404 (this I know for sure, since I have had a same car :-)

Editor: We are first of all not completely convinced that the car is a Front Wheel drive. But well, our readers can probably help you! 
Thursday, 12 January 2017 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

A great car guy left to Four Wheel Heaven

Jan Bruijn_by_John_Mulder_470

Farewell Jan! Your knowledge but more important your charm will be badly missed in the Old Car World. Jan Bruijn, most of you probably know him through his showroom of  Style-e-Auto in the north of The Netherlands. But Jan was much more than a man buying and selling cars. His education at the Design Academy of Eindhoven is visible in everything he did and what he left us. No wonder that three consecutive locations were all in early 1900s factory buildings. He loved that atmosphere and was able to change a nasty building into a stylish post modern showroom & office with simple corrections and additions. 

Our first meeting was at the Automuseum Deventer which he started with Tony Paalman. I wanted to speak with him about my wish to find an Amilcar. With the typical air we used to get to know from him he was not at all interested to talk with me and after half an hour dropped the word that there might be something available from a Swedish museum;  never heard again about that one from Jan. I tend to think that he thought I was just too young to deserve such a car or simply thought my budget wouldn't reach, which would have been a very accurate observation.  Most impressive then & there was a perfectly unrestored BMW 315 roadster, way beyond my budget and still in need of a massive investment to get it on the road. 

So we never came in the position to buy a car from Jan.  Only after we found an Amilcar by ourselves in Texas and after we started PreWarCar his respect grew a little. And we found we had a lot in common during numerous conversations about what is a proper car and what not. Regal Underslung was one of the subjects. And the racy Underslung project he found through these pages was the conversation piece at our first Interclassics-Topmobiel show. It took Jan 11 years to rebuild the car like he wanted it. A rough but extremely good looking pre WWI racer, not hiding its battle scars. Another fabulous conversation piece was the FIAT Tipo 5 from Eastern Europe.  The owner didn't want to advertise and asked us to look around for somebody who would understand the importance of the car. Jan Bruijn was our first choice and he grabbed the chance. The way how he transported the car from Eastern Europe to Holland is a book on its own. And that's where we want to lead you. 

Jan Bruijn's wife Fransje Versloot, also mother of his still quite young sons Dapper(15) en Sterk(12). Not overlooking the two children from an earlier marriage: Tim (29) en Marlies(31) like to collect as many stories as possible. From you. From people who worked with Jan, people who bought from Jan or sold to Jan.  People who rallied with him. People who met him during London-Brighton. People who whatever. Fransje wants to bundle all emails and photos into a booklet to show her sons what kind of man Jan was outside their home. And outside Style-e-Auto, which by the way will be continued. So if you like to share your memories of adventures with Jan, please contact Fransje at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . She will be most grateful for anything that you may have. 

And to Jan: have a good one up there! I hear most cars go to hell, but proper ones end up in heaven. Happy hunting!


(photo John Mulder)

Wednesday, 11 January 2017 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

As we perused the lot list in Worldwide Auctioneers sale at Scottsdale on January 18th, we started to weigh up two British beauties to see which we might prefer.
The 1937 Bentley 4 ¼ Litre Fixed Head Coupe is a coveted 'one off' example with particularly striking Coachwork by Park Ward. The original owner was one Miss F. Pickles, who is understood to have at first desired a Drophead Coupe, but soon changed her mind in favour of this Fixed-Head body.
The 1934 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Drophead Coupe was a radical redesign by Rolls-Royce standards of the era and it marks the last series designed and developed under the watchful eye of company co-founder Henry Royce. 
The auction description chronicles the history of the car which culminates with the long, sleek, and sensuous Binder Drophead Coupe body being married to a PII chassis slightly later than the one with which it started life, thus embodying the very essence of both elegance and silent speed.

But then BAM! We find this fabulous 1938 Talbot-Lago T-23 Sport Cabriolet.


Gorgeous in every respect with its desirable short chassis,  four-litre engine,  Wilson pre-selector gearbox and independent front suspension. This car enjoys a factory-built body influenced by Figoni & Falaschi. Giuseppe Figoni's fascination with aerodynamics produced some truly breathtaking designs.

All three cars have interiors which elevate the driver above the surrounding traffic and make pre-war motoring a true delight.

rolls-interior1 bentley-interior  Talbot-Lago-interior

Vive la difference !

Text Robin Batchelor, pictures courtesy Worldwide Auctioneers.

Tuesday, 10 January 2017 Attention: open in a new window. Print E-mail

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