Rare Bugatti Fiacre on sale in Essen

Rare Bugatti Fiacre on sale in Essen
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Next Saturday, auction house Coys will have its sale at Techno Classica in Essen, Germany. The oldest car in the sale is this magnificent 1929 Bugatti T44 Fiacre.

The special designs that Bugatti was renowned for in the 1920’s and ‘30’s, included a shape that resembled old carriages from the 18th and 17th century. And as these coaches were known as ‘fiacres’ in French, this body style also was named Fiacre.

Bugatti built Fiacre-bodies on several different models. They’re all twodoor, four-seater coupés. The first Fiacre was built in 1926 on a Bugatti Type 40 chassis, but apparently, the big body was too heavy for the four cylinder engine.

It was on this Type 44 chassis, with eight cylinder engine, that the Fiacre body could be combined with the high performance that buyers would expect from a Bugatti. In the 1930’s the Fiacre-body style was also used on Type 46 and Type 50 Bugatti’s.

Famous collectors
This Type 44 Fiacre is pretty unique. Although the Mullin Museum in California has one just like it.
According to Coys, it’s the first time in about 40 years that this Fiacre, with chassis number 441141, is offered publically. The car was sold new by the Bugatti-dealership in Paris in 1930.

Not much is know about its early history, but in the 1960’s the car is acquired by Mr. Uwe Hucke of Germany, a famous collector and author of many books on the subject Bugatti.

In 1977 he sells the car to another famous collector, Helmut Schellenberg, who had been a well-known racer on Bugatti in the 1930’s. Schellenberg has the car restored in Germany and holds on to it until 2005. In that year, the present owner buys the car.

Not many Fiacres are for sale. We found this one, and in 2010 there was this red one in the Rétromobile auction by Bonhams. 

Coys estimates the car at EUR 500,000 to 550,000.