Japanese 'rising sons' at Shannons Melbourne Late summer auction

29 January 2018

• Very low km Subaru WRX and Toyota MR2

• Quirky, very original Suzuki Mighty Boy

• Extensively turbo-enhanced Datsun Fairlady 240Z

With the value of early-model Japanese cars increasing on the world market, Shannons have some ‘rising sons’ crossing the block at its Melbourne Late Summer Auction on February 19 – three with ‘no reserve’.

This extremely low kilometre first-generation 1996 Subaru Impreza WRX offered with ’no reserve’ is expected to bring $22,000-$26,000.

The standout of the Japanese quartet is an extremely low kilometre first-generation 1996 Subaru Impreza WRX Sedan that has spent most of its life in storage and has covered just 23,657km from new – believed genuine.

Introduced in 1992 with rally sport in mind, ‘WRX’ is an acronym for World Rally eXperimental, or some say ‘World Rally Cross’, but Subaru’s four-wheel drive high performance version of the Impreza since its inception has been one of the world’s most desirable high-performance vehicles, with values of the early models rising fast.

Presented in time warp ‘as new’ condition, with excellent paintwork and an unmarked blue-grey cloth interior, the WRX offered was earmarked from new as a ‘future classic’ and has been stored and driven carefully ever since with that potential in mind.

Offered with ‘no reserve’, it is expected to attract bids in the $22,000-$26,000 range.

This 1992 Toyotas MR2 Targa Coupe that is understood to have covered just 50,432km since new is expected to attract a lot of interest from Japanese car enthusiasts at its estimated selling range of $8,000-$12,000.

Also, a very low kilometre car and offered in similar factory original condition is a 1992 Toyota MR2 Targa Coupe that is showing just 50,432km (also believed genuine) on its odometer.

The larger, more streamlined and more luxurious second-generation W20 model introduced in 1989 was likened to a ‘baby Ferrari’ because of its styling similarity to the contemporary Ferrari 348.

The ‘Ferrari red’ MR2 being auctioned is a two-owner car that has been in the hands of its enthusiast collector owner for more than a decade and is expect to attract considerable interest at its guiding range of $8,000-$12,000.

This now-rare, small and quirky 1988 Suzuki Mighty Boy Utility presented in original and very clean condition is expected to sell with ’no reserve’ for $5,000-$8,000.

Japanese car enthusiasts, or those who simply want to stand out from the crowd, will be drawn to the diminutive 1988 Suzuki Mighty Boy Utility presented in very clean and remarkable unmolested condition.

It was once Australia’s cheapest vehicle when it was priced at $5795, but the diminutive two-door micro pick-up has acquired cult status since amongst classic Japanese car enthusiasts.

Producing just 21kW from its 543cc three-cylinder transverse engine that drove its front wheels and weighing around 560kg, the quirky Mighty Boy had relatively lively performance and exceptional fuel economy in its day – qualities that have earned it respect in its time.

Fewer than 400 of the 2800 examples imported into Australia between 1985 and 1988 are believed to still exist.

Adding to its rarity, it is equipped with the model’s optional two-speed automatic transmission, while it has covered only around 30,000km in the past six years since its engine and transmission were both overhauled.

It is expected sell with ‘no reserve’ in the $5,000-$8,000 range, around its original new price.

This cosmetically and mechanically upgraded 1969 Datsun Fairlady 240Z fitted with a 3.0-litre turbocharged six cylinder engine is expected to sell well below its build cost when it is offered for $30,000-$45,000.

Finally, there is a comprehensively-restored Japanese-spec 1969 Datsun Fairlady 240Z in the auction presented in excellent cosmetically and mechanically-enhanced condition.

Powered by a potent, turbocharged L28 straight six engine stroked to 3.0 litre capacity, with suspension and brake upgrades, larger 16-inch Superlite wheels and featuring a completely updated interior with re-upholstered sports seats, a wood-rimmed steering wheel and a powerful multi-speaker sound system, this ‘ultimate’ 240Z is expected to sell with ‘no reserve’ for $30,000-$45,000 – well below its total build cost.

View all lots in the Shannons February 19 Melbourne Late Summer Classic Auction 

For more information on the auction contact the Melbourne Auction Team on (03) 8588 0809 or email auctions@shannons.com.au.

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