1954 Cunninghams C-3

Sale Price
$900,000 - $1,100,000
Est. Range
15 October 2022
Sold Date
Lot Number
Concours restoration
Broad Arrow Auctions
Auction House
Chassis no 5442; Engine no. 52810226. Metallic gray and silver over gray leather. 331/310hp Chrysler FirePower Hemi V-8, four Zenith carburetors on a Cunningham log manifold, column shift 3-speed, exhaust headers, Nardi woodrim steering wheel, wheel covers, Firestone wide whitewalls, luggage, radio, heater.

Evaluation: Excellent paint, brilliant chrome, pristine upholstery and interior trim. Once owned by Briggs Cunningham’s grandson Robert B. Cunningham. Class winner at Amelia, 2nd in the Cunningham class at Pebble Beach in 2015, award winner at The Quail in 2017, and displayed in the Cunningham reunion at Greenwich in 2018. It has remained a show car since and is still essentially beyond perfect.

Bottom Line: This auction may have been “Passion for the Drive”, but this Cunningham hasn’t been driven much more than around the block or on and off a show field since it was done. It is the one, shining example of gorgeous restoration and restoration preservation among the Jim Taylor cars. It would not have been expensive at a million dollars, but it is much more realistic at this result.

by Rick Carey
21 October 2022

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Condition definitions
Condition #1: Concours
Condition #1 vehicles are the best in the world. The visual image is of the best vehicle, in the right colors, driving onto the lawn at the finest concours. Perfectly clean, the vehicle has been groomed down to the tire treads. Painted and chromed surfaces are mirror-like. Dust and dirt are banned, and materials used are correct and superbly fitted. The one word description for #1 vehicles is “concours.“
Condition #2: Excellent
#2 vehicles could win a local or regional show. They can be former #1 vehicles that have been driven or have aged. Seasoned observers will have to look closely for flaws, but will be able to find some not seen by the general public. The paint, chrome, glass and finishes will all appear as excellent. No excessive smoke will be seen on startup, no unusual noises will emanate from the engine. The vehicle will drive as a new vehicle of its era would. The one word description for #2 vehicles is “excellent.“
Condition #3: Good
#3 vehicles could possess some, but not all of the issues of a #4 vehicle, but they will be balanced by other factors such as a fresh paint job or a new, correct interior where applicable. #3 vehicles drive and run well, but might have some incorrect parts. These vehicles are not used for daily transportation but are ready for a long tour without excuses, and the casual passerby will not find any visual flaws. “Good” is the one word description of a #3 vehicle.
Condition #4: Fair
#4 vehicles are daily drivers, with flaws visible to the naked eye. The chrome might have pitting or scratches, the windshield might be chipped. Paintwork is imperfect, and perhaps the body has a minor dent. Split seams or a cracked dash, where applicable, might be present. No major parts are missing, but the wheels could differ from the originals, or other non- stock additions might be present. A #4 vehicle can also be a deteriorated restoration. “Fair” is the one word that describes a #4 vehicle.
Condition #5: Poor
Running, but battered, incomplete, and perhaps rusty.
Condition #6: Parts car
Parts car.
Hagerty only assigns condition ratings to vehicles we can inspect in person or, for online listings, via high-quality photography.