Collector puts scores of cars on auc­tion at Con­cours SA

Business Day - Motor News - - MOTOR NEWS - Mo­tor News Reporter

The an­nounce­ment that there will be an in­ter­na­tional Coys of Lon­don auc­tion at the Con­cours SA in Au­gust is ex­cit­ing, but even more thrilling is the fact the auc­tion will in­clude 75 cars from the col­lec­tion of well-known collector Wayne Plit.

The auc­tion will be held at The Shed at Steyn City on Satur­day, Au­gust 11, dur­ing the three­day Con­cours SA at the es­tate.

“This will be the first time in SA that an in­ter­na­tional clas­sic car auc­tion will be hosted,” Con­cours SA co-or­gan­iser Greg Maruc­chi said.

The amaz­ing col­lec­tion of cars be­ing put up for auc­tion by Jo­han­nes­burg-based Plit rep­re­sents just a small por­tion of his col­lec­tion that be­gan in the late 1980s, start­ing with a 1964 Lan­cia Flavia coupe and fol­lowed by a Ford Es­cort RS 2000.

“My first car was a 1972 Volk­swa­gen Beetle, which I took over from my fa­ther in 1981 [and that] al­ready had about 500,000km on the clock,” says Plit. “And I re­built that old boxer Beetle en­gine many times. So that’s where my pas­sion be­gan.

“You could say the 1964 Lan­cia Flavia Pin­in­fa­rina coupe was my first bona fide clas­sic. The Ford Es­cort RS 2000 that came next was fol­lowed by a BMW 333i, and af­ter that well, with the suc­cess of my busi­ness ven­tures, I was able to ac­cel­er­ate my in­vest­ment into clas­sic and col­lectable cars.

“A year ago … the num­ber that I owned had risen above the 250 mark. I em­ploy five peo­ple just to keep them main­tained and ex­er­cised, be­cause you can’t let these old cars stand around or they’ll de­te­ri­o­rate. So, re­luc­tantly, be­cause I am truly ad­dicted to these old cars, I have made the dif­fi­cult de­ci­sion to ra­tio­nalise the col­lec­tion.”

The de­ci­sion has been agonising, as he is pas­sion­ate about each car in his col­lec­tion.

“I am not a one-marque man. I en­joy a huge va­ri­ety of clas­sic cars, par­tic­u­larly those that orig­i­nate from the 1970s and the 1980s, when many of these cars were in poster form on my bed­room wall. As I col­lected I be­came en­tranced by many other cars from ear­lier eras too. But yes, the time has come to re­fo­cus my port­fo­lio.”

High­lights in­clude a 1935 Fox and Ni­choll Singer Le Mans 2.0l Spe­cial. This car is one of only three Singer cars built by the fa­mous Fox and Ni­choll Race Car Com­pany. The three cars had body num­bers LM11, LM12 and LM13. This is LM11 and is ev­i­dently the only sur­viv­ing car. Ap­par­ently, LM11 raced at the 1934 Le Mans and in var­i­ous major UK events, un­til be­ing brought to SA in 1938 by an RAF air­craft rig­ger on con­tract to the SAAF. The Singer LM11 was sold to a lo­cal Singer ex­pert in 1965 and in 2007 to a collector in Cape Town, prior to be­ing iden­ti­fied as some­thing rather spe­cial, and in­cor­po­rated into the Plit port­fo­lio.

ORIG­I­NAL MUS­TANG

An orig­i­nal un­re­stored 1968 Ford Shelby Mus­tang GT 500 — which still has its orig­i­nal paint, uphol­stery and trim — was im­ported to SA 48 years ago. Sport­ing the orig­i­nal trim and cor­rect wheels, it has the unique patina of a car that has been lov­ingly cared for, but in the form it left the fac­tory at the height of Car­roll Shelby eu­pho­ria.

A 1950 Jaguar XK120 is pos­si­bly the old­est one in SA, fin­ished in a beau­ti­ful off-white colour with red in­te­rior. This is the model that made Jaguar’s fine rep­u­ta­tion for of­fer­ing ex­tremely fast sports cars at an af­ford­able price. The road­ster is the most beau­ti­ful and soughtafter of the XKs. This par­tic­u­lar car fea­tures in the book The Jaguar XK120 by John Elm­green and Terry McGrath.

Another very rare model is a 1990 Porsche 964 RS N-GT rac­ing car with its bare-metal in­te­rior, strength­ened and seamwelded shell, al­loy front boot lid, thin­ner glass and FIA welded-in roll cage. It sports Re­caro race seats cov­ered in flame-re­tar­dant Nomex, a Schroth race har­ness, plumbed-in fire ex­tin­guisher and an on-board cut-off switch. It also just hap­pens to be road le­gal. It was one of only 290 mod­els pro­duced for a sin­gle-make rac­ing series that never hap­pened.

Other mod­els in­clude a trio of su­perb Mini Cooper mod­els; a 1964 Fer­rari 365GT 2+2 RHD, one of only 52 pro­duced; eight Porsches; a Maserati Za­gato Spi­der; five Lan­cias in­clud­ing a right-hand drive 16V In­te­grale; four Lo­tus cars; a rare Re­nault Alpine A110 1600S; a trio of BMW Alpina mod­els; a trio of Fiat 500s; a 1961 Alvis TD21; a BMW Z1 and a Mor­gan Aero 8.

“This in­ter­na­tional auc­tion is a nat­u­ral fit for Con­cours SA, which will be run­ning for the first time at the ac­claimed Steyn City park­land es­tate from Au­gust 10-12,” says or­gan­iser Paul Ken­nard. “It will be just one of the high­lights of an exclusive week­end-long event that is at­tract­ing the cream of clas­sic cars and en­thu­si­asts in SA.” En­tries are lim­ited to 100 cars.

I EN­JOY A VA­RI­ETY OF CLAS­SIC CARS, PAR­TIC­U­LARLY THOSE THAT ORIG­I­NATE FROM THE 1970s AND THE 1980s

Left: This rare Singer that com­peted at Le Mans in the 1930s will be part of the auc­tion. Be­low: Three Alpina BMW mod­els from the Plit col­lec­tion will be auc­tioned by Coys of Lon­don.

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