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Preview: RM Auctions sale, 8 March, Amelia Island, Florida

Published 17 January 2014

RM Auctions has secured another star car for its upcoming Amelia Island, Florida, sale, held on 8 March at the Ritz-Carlton. The car, an award-winning 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster, was originally owned by Natalie Wood - and it's bound to cause quite a stir.

Natalie Wood's car is one of only 25 fitted by the factory with the extremely desirable Rudge wheels, and it was purchased new in January 1958, at the age of 19. Although the 300 SL was delivered in Mercedes-Benz Silver, Wood had the car repainted a bright pink, but she kept the red leather interior. No other car in Hollywood attracted more attention at the time, especially with the beautiful actress behind the wheel.

The car was later refinished in its current Mercedes-Benz Silver Blue with a red leather interior and dark blue convertible top, and it was fully and authentically restored in 2000 by model expert Rudi Koniczek. Proving its impeccable current condition, the 300 SL performed effortlessly in the 2010 Colorado Grand, and it took home Best in Class honours at the 2012 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. The car also appeared in exclusive exhibition titled 'SL@Hollywood - Celebrating 60 Years of a Living Legend' at the Warner Brothers Studios in Los Angeles. Estimate - if you're hoping to bid - is $1,400,000–1,750,000.

Gord Duff, Car Specialist, RM Auctions, said: 'This particular car’s originality, rare Rudge wheels, celebrity provenance, touring capabilities, and Amelia Island Concours-awarded restoration make it arguably one of the finest 300 SL Roadsters available today.'

Additional notable highlights for the one-day sale include:

  • A late pre-production 1986 Porsche 959 ‘Vorserie’, chassis WPOZZZ93ZFS010063, which was used by Porsche as a demonstrator until 1989, when it was upgraded to full 959 production Komfort specification. The 959 is complete with extensive documentation and is presented in excellent mechanical and cosmetic condition (Estimate: $575,000–$725,000);
  • A 1928 Bugatti Type 37A Grand Prix, chassis 37343, documented by noted Bugatti historian David Sewell and recently serviced  (Estimate: $900,000–$1,300,000);
  • A 1934 Duesenberg Model SJ Convertible Sedan, engine no. J-494, which was one of a few Duesenbergs that were supercharged when new and is the only SJ chassis to have carried this elegant LeBaron coachwork. The example on offer boasts known history from new and its original engine, body, and chassis (Estimate: $1,500,000–$1,750,000);
  • A highly competitive and incredibly successful 1965 Shelby Mustang GT350 R, chassis SFM5R538, known as the ‘winningest’ Shelby ever, it is one of only 33 ‘R-Code’ production competition cars  (Est. $900,000–$1,100,000)

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