Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este

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Delahaye – 135 M (1948)


Vehicle Type:
Coach Builder:
Faget & Varnet
Inline 6
Engine CC:
Teresa & David Disiere (US)

Class B


Delahaye - 135 M
Class B20

The Type 135 was the first and most successful sports car from luxury car manufacturer Delahaye in France. The chassis were produced from 1935 to 1954 powered by various engine arrangements and cloaked in a wide variety of body styles. This particular 135M Cabriolet is one of six cars bodied by Faget & Varnet located in Levallois-Perret close to Paris. The convertible is believed to be one of three similar cars to have survived and the only example with the distinctive ‘rostre’ radiator grille. It was designed with an emphatic central bar reprised in the styling of the headlamp trim. The body was not based on a wooden structure but used a patented construction solely in aluminium and steel. The cabriolet (chassis 800745) was launched on the Faget-Varnet stand in 1948 at the Salon de l’Automobile in Paris. Later on, this rarity was emblazoned on the cover of glossy magazine Élites Françaises. The Delahaye was auctioned in the sale of the intriguing barn-find collection of unrestored cars assembled by Roger Baillon in 2015. Baillon had purchased the car back in 1964 and kept it in a barn together with a large number of other notable automobiles. Here it remained unseen by the outside world for nearly 50 years. When this gem came to light, the car was painted light blue but the original Tan & Brown colour combination was discovered beneath the chrome flashing of the headlamps. This enabled the car to undergo a genuine restoration to its former glory, bathed in the original colour combination. After the present owners had acquired the car at the auction in 2015, it underwent an authentic restoration to the original configuration.

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