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Ford to sell two concepts at auction

Tue, 09 Aug 2011

Amongst the numerous one-off concept cars and rare historic vehicles set to be auctioned off at the forthcoming RM Auctions sale in Monterey, California, Ford has contributed two of its own unique concept cars to be sold. All proceeds of the sale will go to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) charity.

The race-inspired 2005 Ford Shelby GR-1 concept and the 2001 Thunderbird Sports Roadster concept will be presented by the world's largest collector car auction house on August 19th in California as part of its Monterey sale. It is believed that the 2001 Shelby will sell for between $150,000 and $200,000 while the 2001 Thunderbird concept will fetch between $125,000–$175,000. There will be no reserve on the cars.

"Both concepts represent important American design statements and provide a very unique ownership opportunity for collectors," says Rob Myers, Chairman & Founder at RM Auctions.

The Ford Shelby GR-1 was unveiled at the 2004 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance and was intended to be a front-engine, two-seat, fastback supercar. Featuring a long hood that blends with the teardrop-shaped cabin, it sits on 12-spoke 19-inch wheels and was inspired by the original '64 Shelby. The car, which is silver with blue racing stripes, was unveiled as a fiberglass platform model as an example prior to the 2005 North America International Auto Show debut of the polished aluminum, driving model.

"The GR-1 Concept Platform Model is an extremely unique concept that features cutting-edge design while reflecting its important Shelby heritage," Myers believes.

The Thunderbird takes a variety of design and styling cues from the ‘Bullet Birds' of the 1960 and was first displayed at the 2001 North American International auto show. The body of the car is displayed in red with a white leather interior with it also featuring a molded fiberglass tonneau that integrates the rear deck with the headrests. An integrated chrome hood scoop, large rounded headlamps and a chrome finished egg-crate design grille are all reminiscent of previous T-Bird models.

"Few American automobiles are as iconic as the Ford Thunderbird," Myers says. "This striking concept melds the old with the new in striking fashion. It is truly a unique interpretation of a modern classic, worthy of close inspection."

It is hoped that the auction will be more successful than last year's Monterey auction, where many of the high-profile cars did not sell for the estimated prices. The 2000 Ford Prodigy Concept sold for just $14,000 each, while the 2003 Ford Supercharged Thunderbird Concept went for $60,000 and the 2004 Ford Mustang GT-R Concept was sold for just $100,000. A 1903 Ford Model A, the oldest existing Ford ever sold was also a no-sale with a high-bid of $325,000 and a 1964 Cooper Ford "King Cobra" did not meet the reserve at $450,000.

By Rufus Thompson