Thursday, February 21, 2013

World's largest treasure trove of small car goes to auction

Robert Frank, CNBC - 3 days

How many of the wealthy, Bruce Weiner likes to collect things.

The candy business, the assets of double bubble, Razzles chewing gum, wax lips and other sweets collects radios, watches, historic motorcycles and Volkswagen.

But his real passion lay in recent years since small cars. Very small cars. Over 11 years, Weiner, built, the world's largest collection of "Microcars" - three - and four wheels cars made after World War II, the early predecessors of the modern MINI Cooper and Fiat 500 are always popular smart cars.

Today and tomorrow will sell Weiner and RM auctions of the collection of more than 200 cars and 300 car-related collectibles. The collection is expected to be more than $6 million to pick up.

Weiner said he is selling the collection as part of a wider reduction of his lifestyle and desire to share the cars after years of hunting them down.

"I'm 54 and I am starting to make it easier," he said. "I want not my stuff to possess me."

He said that it took 11 years to build the collection. Microcars the poor cousin, muscle classic cars and exotics have always been, they have a cult following among collectors. Many Microcars were built after the second world war in Europe and Asia, money, fuel and raw materials were scarce. In many countries cars with three wheels does not require a driver's license, to make more attractive.

"they are very rare," said Weiner. "And they are part of the story."

Weiner said, was much of the joy of building the collection "the thrill of the hunt."

Take for example his ordeal with the purchase of the 1955 Kroboth all weather Scooter, a tricycle Convertible car design legend Gustav Korboth designed. Weiner is one that was a prime example of the car by an older man in Bavaria. Weiner went to the man's House all three months for three years, but the seller rigorously rejected.

He said "He me everytime chased from the property,". "He hit me with a shot gun or German shepherds either."

Eventually died of the owner and Weiner was friend of brother and sister of the husband, and convinced them to sell. The car was able to sell (there are no reserves in the sale) for $40,000 to $50,000.

Among the most valuable cars in the auction to be sold, is a 1958 F.M.R. TG 500 "Tiger", which could sell for more than $150,000. A modified 1959 BMW Isetta, called "Whatta drag," was $100,000 collected. The car was commissioned by Weiner look a famous hot wheels Gegenkraftracer. It is only one of four hot wheels are converted in real cars.

The smallest production car that ever built, will also be sold. The 1964 Peel P50 could for $35,000 to $40,000 sale. The sale of used slogan for the tricycle, "Almost cheaper than walking!" Apparently, no longer.

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