From Behind the Iron Curtain

Ready-for-shipment

If you have ever been to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance than you know that the most exciting part, besides the celebrity sightings, is getting to learn the history behind all the great cars on hand. They all have interesting pasts and today we have the story of an award-winning Delahaye. It’s from The Cobra in the Barn. Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list for a chance to win your own copy of the book. Enjoy!

Along with its greater horrors, World War II destroyed objects of beauty beyond counting. Many rare and fascinating cars were lost to the ravages of warfare; others were confiscated and used to transport officers and most of those disappeared too. A few, like the Paris-Salon Delahaye model 135M profiled here, survived into the twenty-first century through a combination of careful planning and luck.

The car was built for a Bohemian businessman named Adamek in 1937. He had seen a similar car at the Paris Automobile Show the previous year. That car, with coachwork by Figoni et Falaschi of Paris’ Boulougne-sur-Seine area, sold to Indian Prince Aly Khan for the incredible price of $27,000 U.S. dollars. Mr. Adamek wanted a car like it with the same company’s coachwork.

1937 Delahaye 135M

He placed his order through the Vienna Delahaye agent, Hoffman and Hupport, for a 1937 model. The Delahaye company obliged by manufacturing Competition Chassis No. 48666 and shipping it off to Figoni et Falaschi. The coachbuilder installed body No. 676, a short wheelbase “Competition Court,” or “Roadster Grand Sport,” model. The car was painted an elegant “gris lumière et rouge foncé”—a very light gray with deep red trim.

When the war started, Adamek had the foresight to hide the car, which protected it from confiscation. After the war, the Delahaye No. 48666 was resurrected and driven throughout northern Bohemia through the 1950s and 1960s. Records suggest that it was once raced on an amateur level during its life in Czechoslovakia.

In 1969, the fabulous Delahaye, like so many cars before it and after, found its way into a barn. The man who bought it intended to restore it, but he never found the time. For the next three decades, the Delahaye sat disassembled in a barn just outside Prague, its Figoni et Falaschi coachwork and other parts hanging from the walls.

Its owner knew the car’s value and had some idea on whom to get word to when he decided to sell. That word reached Jacques Harguindeguy through a Delahaye parts seller he liked to spend time with at Retromobile, Paris’ week-long parts swap meet.

Shortly after the 1997 Retromobile, that friend called Harguindeguy with a unique opportunity: a sixty-year-old Delahaye, disassembled and concealed for half its life in a Prague barn, was up for sale. “When he described the car to me, I told him that I would give my balls for a car like that,” Harguindeguy says. “He said that nobody else knew about this car, but I only had three days to give him my decision.”

That was Friday, so Harguindeguy asked for, and thankfully received, two extra days, so he could investigate the car among French collectors. “On Monday I got hold of the archivist for the Delahaye club in France,” he says. “He actually knew about the car, but said the old gentleman who owned it wanted $250,000 for it, which, in his mind, was way too much money. I was very nervous, because there are lots of fake ones around. He told me that even though it was in poor condition and disassembled, it was authentic.”

Harguindeguy had another friend, Christoph Grohe of Switzerland, travel to Prague to see the car in person. Before he arrived in Prague, Grohe was suspicious that the car might be a replica. But upon seeing the car, and discovering that the Figoni et Falaschi body was indeed genuine, he knew that he was in the presence of a very special car. Even though it was disassembled, the car showed traces of its original pearl gray paint, dark red accents, and red leather interior. The car seemed to be complete, but was missing its cosmetic chrome trim and a radiator.

“I said ‘Thank you very much,’ and bought the car,” Harguindeguy says. “I was amazed that even though the car was apart and had been neglected for decades, the original engine with the correct No. 37 stamping was still with the car. This was rare.”

Harguindeguy had struck a deal, but the purchase was only a step in getting the car. Next came the tricky business of removing it from the Czech Republic. “The car was totally in pieces, so we had to pay lots of under-the-table money to government officials to get it out of the country,” he says. “When it arrived in Switzerland, I had the car loosely assembled so it would fit into a shipping container.”

Under restoration

The car was then shipped to Harguindeguy’s California home in 1998. Restoration began in March 1999, and it took approximately two years to complete. He worked closely with Brian Hoyt of Perfect Reflections in Haywood, California, whose shop restored the car as Harguindeguy conducted research and sourced parts. “The engine block was in very bad shape,” he says. “It had frozen and was cracked, but we saved it. I bought three Delahayes to restore this one.”

New trim

One of the toughest jobs was recasting the elegant brightwork that runs around the headlights and taillights and the trim on the fenders. Using only blurry pre-war photos of his car and other Figoni et Falaschi models of the era, Harguindeguy and his restorers exquisitely reproduced the trim in solid brass before sending it to the platers.

Harguindeguy received the car from the restoration shop in July 2000, when he brought it to the upholstery shop to have its unique bench front-seat interior trimmed. One month later, he trailered the Delahaye to Pebble Beach for the annual Concours d’Elegance. In contrast to most of the other owners of classic cars, though, he didn’t show the car to anyone during the days leading up to the Sunday classic. “I kept the car hidden in my trailer prior to the show,” he says, not wanting the politics of car judging to “predetermine” his car before the show.

By coincidence, Claude Figoni, son of the co-founder of the famous Figoni et Falaschi coach-building team, was invited in 2000 to Pebble Beach as grand marshal. “I only showed Claude the car in the trailer on Saturday, and a little tear came to his eye,” Harguindeguy says. “He said it looked like it left our shop yesterday.”

Early on Sunday morning of the fiftieth Pebble Beach event, Harguindeguy opened the trailer, backed his car out, and drove it toward the legions of car fans and the judges. The crowd was floored by the car’s beauty, its elegant lines, and beautiful details. Clearly the car was a show favorite, but Harguindeguy wouldn’t know which car won the coveted Best of Show until all the award winners were driven across the judging stand. As he and his daughter, Debbie Wall, drove the Delahaye across the stand, in front of the thousands of spectators, a confetti cannon exploded and rained colored ribbons on his car. Harguindeguy had won the most prestigious award in the world of car collectors.

At Pebble Beach

The Delahaye that survived the war, some amateur racing, and a long stint scattered about a Czech barn was finally recognized as the best in the world. Once more it boasted the beauty and artistry with which it entered the world in an earlier century. But additional showing for the car was of no interest to Harguindeguy. “It’s already won the biggest award in the world,” he says. “What could be better than that?”

Like This? Get Our Daily Email

Comments

  1. Rene

    A true beauty. And an amaizing story!

  2. Robert in Maine

    Mads,
    I am curious why you feel that it was “ruined”.
    Although this car is out of my league by several orders of magnitude so that I may be unqualified to comment, it appears that it was meticulously restored, while leaving it as “original” was not an option.

    Thanks.

  3. scot

    ~ i deeply hope this Delahaye will again be seen on public view somewhere, someday. it is such a remarkable car and an intriguing chain of events. Sunday morning’s ‘In The Barn’ Finds make my week!

  4. Mark E

    If you closely compare the B&W photo to the Pebble Beach one, I honestly wouldn’t call this car ‘restored’ – at least not unless you count a street rod as restored too.

    • paul

      I agree Mark, the grille is wrong, the little lights above the headlights have been removed. Bottom line is if we took a normal classic car to an average car show the judges would take points off none original grille, non stock paint , & the omission of those small lights. But I do understand that these cars were one-off’s in some cases.

    • Jesse Staff

      I wouldn’t base the originality of the restoration off of one photo. It was in service for many years and was even raced, so it is possible that it had a few modifications and a respray at some point.

  5. Themis Veleris

    Amazing story !

  6. Dolphin Member

    I don’t want to speak for Mark E, but my understanding of what he’s saying is that this Delahaye is over-restored, the most obvious things being the 2-tone paint and the curlicues on the fender spats. Although various ’30s cars carried decorative slashes on the body sides, and a few cars had speed streamers tapering back off the lights, I don’t think these cars originally had the curlicues on the spats, and 2-tone paint was rare or maybe even absent. At least I have not seen period photos showing them.

    I see the car as being over-restored, but with the intense competition and prestige of a win at The Pebble, it’s not too surprising that there might be some extras added during the resto.

    • sabeletodo

      Do a little googling. It’ll fill in the gaps in your knowledge.

  7. Favedave

    I would be interested to know when the B&W photo was taken and what photos were used to add the details like the chrome pieces around the headlights and turn signals and the fender skirts on the front. I don’t see any of those items in the B&W, but I’m fairly sure the owner would not have gone to the expense of doing all of these things, if they were not on the car when it came out of the Figoni et Falaschi shop in the first place. To be honest, those changes, like the turn signals tacked on the front fenders were probably to keep it street legal in the austere Czech Republic of the Cold War. Doudied out, beaten up and conforming to the law was probably the only reason it remained in the family’s hands in while being driven behind the Iron Curtin in the 50s and 60s. Nor would Figoni’s son have remarked “It looks like it left our shop yesterday” if it had been tarted unnecessarily. The fact that its been shown only once at Pebble Beach is a shame. I assume it’s only been driven “the distance it travelled from the trailer to the podium in PB” in an undisclosed indoor location once too. So when I read Mad’s comment, “Another great car ruined by the Pebble Beach wankers, I laughed out loud in agreement.

  8. jim

    looks like a ton of time/work/money went into this car. a great find and story

  9. Charles

    Over restored or not it is beautiful and unique. A wonderful car and its story has been saved.

  10. stu

    @ Dolphin…..I agree with most of what you say, but take a closer look at the B/W photo. The front spats have been removed and tell no tale here, but look at the rears. I believe I see the curly motif you mention, and it looks pretty close to the modern version. It COULD, however , be a plated chrome item, while the modern type appears to be painted.
    To all who dislike it, beauty is always in the eye of the beholder, and that’s why Howard Johnson made 28 flavors of ice cream.

    • Dolphin Member

      stu, I’m not sure what’s in the B&W photo above, so before making my previous comment I did a search for period photos of this car and similar F&F-bodied Delahayes. I didn’t find any that showed 2-tone paint and decorations on the spats.

      When I looked at modern photos of these cars I saw various decorations and paint schemes that were similar to this car on some Delahayes. But when I looked at photos of Delahayes restored by RM I didn’t see much, if any decoration, and I couldn’t find an RM car with 2-tone paint. Since I believe that RM knows their stuff, I think that’s important information about how these cars should be finished, and that was partly why I made my earlier comment.

      OTOH, maybe this car should have decorations and 2-tone paint, since Claude Figoni and the Pebble Beach judges appear to accept the decorations and paint on this car. If they are correct in saying that this Delahaye should have these features, then maybe it’s not over-restored.

      But I would still prefer to see good period photos of this and similar F&F-bodied Delahayes as they came from the factory to better understand how they were back then.

  11. Chris A.

    Figoni et Falaschi were known for their flamboyant haute coture body styles. You went to them for the custom one off that reflected your taste (and money). To me the car has nice lines that are ruined by the overdone paint and detailng. The lines of the car are partially lost and broken up by the beltline slashes and contrasting paint colors. I’d like to think the original pearl gray would have shown the car as the original owner intended. This is like taking a great painting and then putting it through an “enhancing” software program. I really think the days of a true restoration winning best of show at Pebble Beach are far behind us. Those spots and the color remind me of Clarabelle the Clown.

  12. Dixie Flyer

    A whole lot of criticism of what was done but not one bit of what should have been done. The guy went to great pains to get a car out of an Eastern Block Country and we can’t wait to put him up on a cross.
    Maybe it would have been better off being sent to Cuba with a Russian truck engine ?

  13. sabeletodo

    Whatta bunch of old women, who don’t have the slightest idea of what they are talking about. “It’s over restored.” You have no idea what it looked like when delivered. “The grill was changed.” Yes, because it wasn’t a Delahaye grille. All you have is a blurry B&W photo from the ’50s or ’60s. Here’s another 135m with the same body work and same paint details (and grill and no little lights over the headlights): http://www.flickr.com/photos/10047629@N04/9090326354/in/pool-1226465@N21

    And here’s a different Figoni Delahaye with the same paint details: http://www.flickr.com/photos/benjiauto/9080968654/in/pool-1226465@N21 SAME GRILL!

    And here’s a Figoni et Falaschi Talbot Lago T26 with the same pattern on the fenders and fender skirts: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pontfire/8870161629/in/pool-1226465@N21

    OOPS! Here’s another Delahaye 135M : Same as ever: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dmentd1/8000879947/in/pool-1226465@N21/

    What a bunch of maroons.

    • Jesse Staff

      Thanks for sharing the links. A few people may have been a little hasty with their judgements on this one.

    • Dolphin Member

      Thanks for your thoughtful comments.
      I’ve never been called a ‘maroon’ before.
      Is being a ‘maroon’ a good thing or a bad thing?

      But to address your comments…..

      I actually did use Google to try to find period photos of F&F-bodied Delahayes. Note my use of the word ‘period’ here and above. I said that because I was trying to find photos that showed the cars back when they were new.

      I included ‘period’ because it’s well known that people have gone to extremes in order to get a big win at Pebble Beach. It’s understandable that this would be, and has been, a big issue in the collector car world.

      People have argued that cars that have been restored to significantly better condition than they ever were when they were new are over-restored and should not be winning awards. If over-restored cars should not be winning awards, then that means we need to know what the cars were like when they left the factory in order to know whether a car is over-restored now.

      That’s why I Googled for *period* photos.

      Unfortunately, sabeletodo, although your linked photos are really beautiful, not one of them is a period photo. They all look like they were taken yesterday. Unfortunately, all they tell us is that various people have recently restored their F&F cars to have decorations on the spats, and 2-tone paint in some cases.

      So, we still don’t know what these F&F Delahayes looked like when they came out of the factory.

      BTW, I also Googled “sabeletodo”.
      I’ll save people the trouble of doing that by indicating what I found:

      The polite meaning is “know-it-all”.
      The crass meaning is “smart-ass”.

      Cheers, everyone.

      • sabeletodo

        Now you’ve gone and hurt my feelings.

        While I could imagine the judges are all rich rubes taken in by shiny paint, I’m instead going to take from numerous photos I found of restored Figoni et Falaschi couch-built automobiles that there is a historical basis to the restorations. Instead because YOU can’t find a picture on the ‘net, You, and others leap to the assumption that the restoration is wrong, or at least inauthentic. I’d imagine automotive restorers on this level have resources beside Google. Oh! Look! Here’s another: http://www.supercars.net/Pics?v=y&s=c&id=2328&p=1936_Delahaye_135TorpedoCabriolet1.jpg Somebody better let them know that there car is messed up because Dolphin needs to see a period photo.

      • sabeletodo
    • paul

      Both the first & second pictures show a different grille & the 1st 2nd & 3rd pictures show little lights or holes where those lights would be. These cars were made in small #’s & sometimes altered as the customer demanded, now I don’t know much about these cars but you say the grille wasn’t a Delahaye grille if so then it sure fits the contour pretty good for a grille that is not for this car. Perhaps you haven’t seen all the different grilles they may have offered their customers.

  14. Dixie Flyer

    There is a point where you can’t preserve. Yeah, people can go way overboard in painting, detailing but then what would you do ? Use an air gun with poor pressure and get orange peel? Some of these were overdone in the day.
    Some of these cars did cost more than a house back in the 30’s. At the Frist museum in Nashville there is an excellent display of art deco cars this summer. Some of them cost close to $30,000 IN THE THIRTIES!

  15. JWH

    My presumption would be that a person with the capability of restoring the car to this level of perfection would have spared no effort to ensure its authenticity. Whether or not that is true, it is what I prefer to believe when I see an such an endeavor. I cannot imagine that the gentlemen who bought these cars would not have tailored some small detail to their personal tastes. Accordingly, I would conclude that if there were a factory photo of all of these cars, probably none of the group would be truly identical to the others. Such was (and hopefully still is) the nature of custom coachwork.

    It is a beautiful car backed by a story that is commensurate with its beauty.

    Thank you for sharing. I just wish I could see it in person some day.

    This site has brightened so many of my mornings.

    • Debbie

      Thank you for your kind words. My father Jacques Harguindeguy would have been pleased. This car was his “swan song” and he gave it his all to restore the car to its utmost authentic perfection.

    • Debbie

      The most thrilling day of my father’s life. ❤️

  16. Bill J

    Nice car but it seems like a new car, not a vintage year. Bunch of 32 Fords are convening this weekend in town. Everyone is saying let’s go look at the “old cars”. 75% are new-build 32 Fords with glass or reproduction steel bodies. They are old. They could be deemed as kit cars I suppose.

  17. Dolphin Member

    At a place like Pebble Beach the correctness of a restoration is always going to be an issue, since correctness and authenticity are the basis for judging and comparing the cars.

    With the strong competition that happens at Pebble Beach, making cars more perfect than they were when they left the factory—-over-restoration—-has become such a problem when it comes to authenticity that judges now deduct points for cars that are over-restored. There’s discussion of this fact available on the web by some very experienced and knowledgeable car guys (Ken Gross; Winston Goodfellow).

    When it comes to correctness, there’s no substitute for original information from the time the car was made. Without that, you can’t tell whether a car is correct, or poorly restored, or over-restored. Some of the best information is going to come from original period photos. I’m tempted to add here that I don’t think anyone who wants to know what vintage cars were like when they were built needs to apologize to anyone for wanting original period photos to help with that, but I won’t since the usefulness and relevance of period photos is so obvious.

    Unfortunately, there seem to be no period photos of these F&F Delahayes, at least that I can find. Maybe all the terrific looking F&F-bodied Delahayes that the above links brought us to are exactly like they were back in the ’30s when they were built. And as I said above, since Claude Figoni and the Pebble Beach judges thought this Delahaye was worthy of the top award that year, then maybe it’s perfectly correct in every way.

    OTOH, as I also said above, since RM restores and auctions Delahayes that don’t have the decorations and 2-tone paint, and since RM seems to be at the top of the classic car restoration / auction heap, maybe these cars shouldn’t have decorations and 2-tone paint.

    Different authorities coming up with what look like different conclusions and approaches…….
    Too bad we don’t have some original period photos of the cars to look at.

  18. Don Andreina

    From ‘Classic and Sportscar’, Jan 1988: George Hamel (Geo Ham for poster aficionados) was involved in the design of the roadster show car built on the Delahaye 135 chassis, shown at the 1936 Paris Salon and snapped up by Aly Khan, said Claude Figoni. The article features original renderings from F&F which shows a car designed with separate coloured fenders (a Delage D8). The article also features various other period photos including a 1939 V12 Delahaye under construction with a similar grille to the above restored car and a completed 1937 retractable windscreen Delahaye without side indicator lights.
    P.S. I love this site!

  19. Don Andreina

    D’oh. Just posted twice. British collectors used to call F&F ‘Phony & Flashy’

  20. sabeletodo

    This should satisfy the old women, It’s an original rendering by the designer Geo Ham. Two tone. Curly-cues on the fender skirts.http://api.ning.com/files/ktgFwSfxem3V1BNEVcrVZAIFl3mkxoerJWwWFuj0B6g1dl7rLJPhJ0KxKlgMVyWAF2YtWL-S9qybCgDPX09a4gk5qeNEw9BS/FigFalA.jpg?width=569

    Next time, use something besides what you think you know, but cannot demonstrate, before you slag a beautiful and accurate restoration.

  21. z1rider

    From the Flickr set posted above. Looks to be a contemporary advert. Makes the restoration on this one look quite correct.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/61766673@N00/7885739078/in/pool-1226465@N21/

  22. Dolphin Member

    To sabeletodo:

    The photos that you and others linked to are convincing. Thanks for providing them.
    ——————————————————————–

    To everyone else:

    We all value this site a lot. But in the last 24 hours things have changed, and not for the better, unfortunately.

    For our comments and questions, some of us have been likened to “old women”, which is demeaning to both women and men. At a stroke, both sexes have been broadly demeaned so someone can hammer home a point.

    Some of us have also been told that we don’t know what we are talking about, when what we were trying to do is to better understand the history of an important car, a Pebble Beach Best of Show winner. For understanding this, the context is important. The fact that a top restorer, who is also THE top collector car auctioneer, does things differently from how they were done with this F&F-bodied car is worth considering. The fact that the Pebble Beach show had to bring in point deductions for over-restoration shows that it’s a real issue in this hobby.

    If over-restoration isn’t what we are dealing with here, fine, but for myself I trust the historical record over loud shouting. The fact that period photos came to light is good, but the demeaning that went on getting there isn’t OK.

    To be demeaned and dissed in this way for talking about these things is just plain unacceptable to me. I have a bunch of decades in this hobby, and projects going on at the moment that I could be spending more time on. So if this site is going to be the subject of the kind of derogatory and arrogant input that I have seen in the last 24 hours, that will be too bad. That same thing happened at another prominent site—arrogance, intolerance of other peoples’ thoughts and approaches, and even rage took over. I have better things to do with my time, and I don’t bother going there any more.

    I don’t want that to happen here.
    Am I the only one who feels this way?

    • Jesse Staff

      You’re right Dolphin. I’m not sure why this particular story got so out of hand. A lot of new people joined the conversation so I can only assume that they do not know how we do things around here. Many people assume that when they see a comment box on a website that it must be a place to insert insults. We even have many long time commenters who used to leave negative remarks, but have since realized that this is a community of respectful enthusiasts. I do not wish to censor opinion, but we need to stay on course so a few new rules are going to be implemented.

      First, when a new person leaves a comment it will be held for moderation. After we can see that they are going to contribute to the conversation, every subsequent comment will be approved automatically.

      Second, we have added a “report” link to the bottom of each comment and we encourage everyone to report anything that they find offensive or off-topic.

      Third, we reserve the right to delete any comment that is disrespectful. This is a place to criticize cars, not people. We encourage debate, but let’s keep it clean!

      I hope these small changes will help without stifling the discussion. We don’t want anyone to leave! I, for one, would sorely miss Dolphin’s insightful commentary. It is something I look forward to with every post!

      • paul

        Eh I have a thicker skin then all this, I still enjoy it all & learn even at 62…. The thicker surround grille of the top 2 pictures 2 small lights changed for a narrower surround, deleted lights still hasn’t been explained, but OK , what ever.

      • sabeletodo

        I know the hand wringing is directed at me, but I’ll explain my motivations. I see Dolphin as playing the smartest guy in the room. He says it’s about over restoration, but he was actually attacking the authenticity of the paint scheme, based on what he could allegedly remember and Google. Well, over restoration is generally understood to mean inauthentic finishes, parts plated when they were originally painted, base/clear paint systems on vintage cars, lack of factory overspray. Well, I knew he was wrong. I’ve seen other F&F 135 Delahayes, and nothing jumped out at me as being wrong, and before saying anything, I found evidence. Dolphin make dogmatic(and ultimately wrong) assertions. When my evidence was held to be insufficient because it wasn’t “period”, I found period proof. I admit to being somewhat insulting, but I find Dolphin’s approach to be didactic and arrogant. ” I don’t think these cars originally had the curlicues on the spats, and 2-tone paint was rare or maybe even absent, ” but he offers no evidence. Then he mentions RM Restorations, and appeals to what he has seen of RM’s F&F restorations and their paint schemes.. RM didn’t restore the car in question, Perfect Reflections did. RM hasn’t even restored any of the other 10 Delahaye F&F 135s. What I am saying is come prepared to back up what you say. I’m perfectly happy to go away and lurk, like I always have now.

      • Jesse Staff

        Like I said sabeletodo, we welcome debate. That is what makes these discussions fun. There is no room for name calling or insults though. We would rather have you continue to comment than to lurk, but please try to be respectful.

    • Dolphin Member

      I have a little familiarity with RM since I used to live nearby, and for anyone who might still be interested, this link shows a Delahaye 135 with F&F body that RM restored a few years ago. If you click on the B&W photo of the 135 it will bring up more photos in colour.

      http://www.rmautorestoration.com/portfolio/?submitsearch=search&search=

  23. Don Andreina

    I’m new here, but here goes…

    This site is an absolute delight for me. I have been disappointed by some of the comments on this vehicle as per Dolphin; we are ALL in our own minds experts in this chosen field.

    I can talk freely within this context knowing i’m not boring my girlfriend, but I too have seen other blog/sites ruined by the arrogance of thinking you’re the smartest guy in the room.

    No, this car is not in original condition, but I don’t own it. I can venture an opinion politely but firmly as I am infinitely passionate about old cars, as we all appear to be. I don’t like being proven wrong, but I would prefer to be corrected than remain ignorant. That’s sort of how it goes in the informanet.

    Its just a matter of courtesy. Peace out.

  24. JWH

    I truly hope this site does not degenerate into argument and controversy. I have found it to be a breath of fresh air to come here to see cars most of us can only dream about, and to share experiences about cars we have known. There’s enough argument and controversy for everyone on the 6:00 news.

    And I still think this is a beautiful car. Its not my cup of tea ( I still want a Bugeye), but to see a piece of metal go from the first picture to the last is a truly amazing endeavor. I am eternally grateful to those who stepped up to accomplish it. I would applaud that effort even if it were to result in an ungraceful car (which this Delahaye clearly is not).

  25. Stu

    I’m really sorry to have started this controversy, but I dearly love cars of all types.
    That said, and FWIW, I think that “sabeletodo” means “I have a sable colored XKE in the barn to restore.”

  26. Charles

    Not exactly my type of car either. I collect Trans AM’s and have wet dreams about GTO’s.

    One has to respect the current owner’s determination and attention to detail, even if he took the restoration beyond what the as built version of this car was. It would be difficult not to over-restore a car such as this. The car is a cool piece of history, and it is great that it has been saved. The story of the car’s survival is almost more valuable than the car itself.

    There is a saying in the car sales business. There is a butt for every seat. Thankfully this seat found the right butt with deep pockets and a love for unusual cars.

    • scot

      ~ accidentally clicked report when i meant to reply. i share your opinion, Charles. to each his or her own!

  27. Chris A.

    On July 15, 2013 I commented, and none too kindly, on the F & F Delahaye 135 restoration. After again looking at the pictures and other posts and links, I apologize. Reflecting on my comments, my tastes are more restrained than F&F originally and the restoration, but that doesn’t make the Delahaye overdone or wrong. The restored car is exactly what the original owner and Jacques intended to create and 60 years later then restore, a car that generated “oohs and aahs” both favorable and other wise in the spirit of F&F. A one of a kind car built to very individual tastes. If you had displayed it at the recent Detroit Auto Show it would still have drawn a crowd just as it did at Pebble Beach and generated strong viewer opinions, just as it always has and will in the future.

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks. Don't post your car for sale in the comments. Click here to get it featured on the homepage instead.

*

Notify me of new comments via email. Or subscribe without commenting.