A 1936 Bugatti Type 57 SC Coupé Atlantic, named best vintage car of 2017 on Wednesday.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

A 1936 Bugatti Type 57 SC Coupé Atlantic, named best vintage car of 2017 on Wednesday.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

A $30 Million Bugatti Is Named ‘Best of the Best’ Vintage Car

At the annual best-of competition, the 1936 model was chosen from among eight classic options.

For the last three years, every classic car that has won “Best of Show” from prestigious concours is then judged head-to-head against all the other global winners to be named “Best of the Best.” The award is a little bit like an All-Star game, except these stars come from Amelia Island, Goodwood, Quail, Pebble Beach, Concorso d’Eleganza, and other car shows around the world. The goal is to see which one rides at the absolute pinnacle of any of the classic vehicles displayed that year.

On Wednesday evening, a 1936 Bugatti Type 57 SC Coupé Atlantic owned by car connoisseur Peter Mullin won the award for top vintage car of 2017. The honor is sponsored by the Hong Kong-based Peninsula Hotels chain, and this year, the gala celebration of the honor was held at the Peninsula Paris. Each of the top players under consideration, including the winner, is described briefly below.

1936 Bugatti Type 57 SC Coupé Atlantic

1936 Bugatti Type 57 SC Coupé Atlantic

The winner of the Chantilly Arts & Elégance Richard Mille concours in France, this Bugatti is one of only three extant road-going versions of this seminal French supercharged supercar. This particular vehicle was sold new to a scion of the baronial Rothschild family, and passed through a few hands before being acquired by Peter Mullin for his Mullin Automotive museum in Oxnard, Calif., for a reported sum of over $30 million. Its Streamline Moderne styling is capped by an external riveted seam that runs the length of the car, a distinctive vestige of the un-weldable (flammable!) alloy from which racing versions of the same design were made.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Spider

1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Spider

This sophisticated Italian grand tourer is among Alfa Romeo’s most beautiful designs in its 100-plus year history, and in 2017, it took top prize at the Amelia Island Concours de Sport. The 8Cs were built on versions of a racing-derived chassis, as closed coupes or convertibles, with bodies from various coachbuilders, and with straight-eight cylinder engines of various potencies. This one ticks all the boxes for desirability: a high-output model with a long wheelbase that’s convertible and Touring-designed.  

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

1951 Ferrari 212 Export Cabriolet

1951 Ferrari 212 Export Cabriolet

This early Ferrari convertible, from the brand’s fifth model year, won the Gran Turismo Ferrari Cup Cavallino Classic in Florida. Gorgeous and powerful, its muscular body was custom-built for the Portuguese ambassador to France. This task was completed by coachbuilder Vignale from a design by Giovanni Michelotti, who went on to pen dozens of beloved Ferraris and Maseratis before developing the New Class design language for BMW in the 1960s.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

1957 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale Prototipo

1957 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale Prototipo

The winner of the Concorso d‘Eleganza in Italy is this diminutive prototype coupe. Styled by the advanced designers at Bertone to wow potential customers at the Turin Motor Show in 1957, the design is by Franco Scaglione, who had just completed three intensely advanced, even outrageous, aerodynamic concepts for Alfa Romeo: the so called BAT cars of the mid-1950s. This streamlined, aeronautic two-door model demonstrates that sleek, windswept influence.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

1933/35 Lancia Astura Aerodinamica Coupé

1933/35 Lancia Astura Aerodinamica Coupé

This handsome Lancia took home top honors from the Concours of Elegance in the U.K.’s Hampton Court Palace. The storied Italian brand was known for technical and engineering excellence, as well as creative styling. These capabilities attracted all manner of people, including, in the case of this car, Vittorio Mussolini, Benito Mussolini’s son, who commissioned this lightweight aluminum body from coachbuilder Castagna so the car could be raced competitively. It has since been subject to a seven-year restoration.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

1957 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet

1957 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet

The winner of the Goodwood Cartier Style et Luxe Concours d’Elegance in the U.K. is this stormy gray, blue-chip Ferrari 250 GT convertible. The 250 series helped settle the brand’s conflict between building winning race cars and building exclusive road cars by incorporating the best of both in one package. With a three-liter, 12-cylinder engine, and a reserved midcentury modern body by preferred Ferrari coachbuilder, Pininfarina, they are as delightful to drive as they are to regard.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

1929 Mercedes-Benz S Roadster

1929 Mercedes-Benz S Roadster

This unique two-seater won the Pebble Beach Concours in California. It’s an odd combination of German engineering and British craftsmanship: A lightweight stainless steel and royal blue body was built by Barker coach-builders in London for a titled English family, while the supercharged eight-cylinder engine was designed by Ferdinand Porsche, who later engineered the VW Beetle with Adolf Hitler before founding his eponymous car company.

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best

1964 ATS 2500 GTS Coupé

1964 ATS 2500 GTS Coupé

The winner of the  Quail Motorsports Gathering in California is this very limited production grand tourer from short-lived Italian car marque Automobili Turismo e Sport (ATS.) The brand came into being when key Ferrari employees left the company after a conflict with the Ferrari family and then attempted to create their own road and race car-building operation. This lightweight, Space Age design was the first Italian GT with its engine situated behind the front seats. 

Source: Peninsula Best of the Best