André Lurton's collection of vehicles to be auctioned off by Artcurial on Sunday 27 September was one of the most eclectic out there. #SoBARNES brings you an exclusive private viewing with Arnaud Lurton, Managing Partner of BARNES Vineyards Investment.
“I learned to drive when I was 4 years old in one of the Jeeps in the auction,” says Arnaud Lurton, whose grandfather, the man who built up this extraordinary collection over 30 years, died last June at the age of 94. “After a family lunch, he would get the Jeep out the garage and take me for a tour of the Château Bonnet vineyards on his knees. I remember I could hardly reach the pedals.”
Artcurial is auctioning this amazing collection of 80 vehicles (47 cars, 17 military vehicles and 17 agricultural vehicles) amassed by André Lurton, veteran of the Second World War, politician and legendary Bordeaux winegrower, in the mid-90s. Passionate about cars from his childhood, André Lurton wanted to bring together all the models once owned by his family and that of his wife, Elisabeth Garros.
Khrushchev's Estafette van
As well as the numerous Citroëns, including a rare M35 with a rotary engine, no one could fail to be impressed by the 1928 Rolls Royce Phantom I 40/50 HP Torpedo which was displayed in the Louis Vuitton Beijing store after a rally in China (est.: €70,000 - €90,000). Another car more than worthy of interest is the 1898 Fisson 8HP 3-litre “Tonneau”. Extremely rare and very clearly eligible for the “rallyes d’ancêtres”, this Fisson competed in the most prestigious of them all, the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run in 1996 (est.: €120,000 - €200,000). On the racing side, the 1971 Corvette up for sale was built specially for the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA). A model that was never intended for the collection: ”my grandfather bought this Corvette on the phone at auction, but he thought he was bidding on another lot!!” Arnaud Lurton admits. “When it was delivered to him, he was surprised... but he quickly took to it and kept it of course” (est.: €12,000 - €16,000).
On a different note, the Renault “Plein Air” Estafette was specially built to drive Nikita Khrushchev around when he visited Billancourt in 1960, according to Arnaud Lurton (est.: €8,000 - €12,000).
“The French terms used in wine tasting often resemble those for motor vehicle testing,” explains Matthieu Lamoure, CEO of Artcurial Motorcars. We talk about the "handling" of the vine just as we do about a car, while we appreciate the “strength”, “roundness” or "pedigree" of wines or cars. These same words can be used to describe André Lurton's collection, built with the same fervour as for the production of a great Bordeaux vintage."
Pursuing his passion, André Lurton added around fifteen military vehicles to his collection, with two flagship pieces exhibited for the auction, a 1942 M10 Tank Destroyer (est.: €220,000 - €250,000) and a 1943 Sherman M4 (est.: €140,000 - €180,000). The ensemble would not be complete without a tribute to the world of winemaking, via a collection of agricultural machinery and vintage tractors (view the full auction catalogue here).
Pictures © Peter Singhof / DR
Exhibition from Thursday 24 to Saturday 26 September from 11am to 6pm, Lieu-dit Montarouch, Route de Branne 33760 Targon and Lieu-dit Chauveau, on the D239, 33420 Espiet, France
Auction on Sunday 27 September 2020 at 3pm, Château Bonnet - 33220 Grézillac, France
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