$4.62 Million Mercedes Gullwing Leads Strong Auction Weekend in Arizona

As the auctions in and around Scottsdale, Ariz., over the weekend proved, the uppermost reaches of the collector-car hobby remain virtually unfazed by the various crises roiling the global economy.

A 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing, one of 29 alloy-bodied Gullwings to have been produced by the German automaker, shattered preauction estimates on its way to a $4.2 million gavel price and a $4.62 final sale with buyer’s premium. As Rob Sass noted in his preview of the sale, a bidder would have found little fault with the example consigned by Gooding & Company:

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Porsche Introduces a Brawnier Boxster for 2013

A substantially revised Boxster was unveiled by Porsche on Thursday, mere days after the German automaker’s executives packed up from the Detroit auto show media previews.

While this Boxster unmistakably follows in the footsteps of previous models, Porsche called the two-seat sports car’s lightweight body entirely new and its chassis completely revamped.

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Range-Extending Option for Electric BMW i3: a Smart Hedge?

On Friday in Frankfurt, BMW showed working prototypes of its i3 electric runabout and i8 plug-in hybrid sports coupe. The carbon-fiber-reinforced concepts were relatively faithful to the renderings that accompanied the launch of the German automaker’s “i” subbrand in February. A new wrinkle, however, is the addition of an optional gasoline-burning range extender for the i3, an otherwise purely electric car.
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Mercedes-Benz Reveals A-Class Concept Car

Mercedes-Benz has revealed the concept version of its new A-Class, set for display at the coming Shanghai and New York auto shows. The smallest car in the German automaker’s line, the A-Class is a far cry from the original of 1997. That model’s novel architecture set passengers above the drive train, lending it a podlike quality and a resemblance to the cars of the Smart brand owned by Mercedes.

The exterior forms of the Concept A-Class pick up on the theme of the current Mercedes design laid out by the company’s design chief, Gorden Wagener: “the combination of defined edges and free interplay.”
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BMW Reveals 1 Series M Coupe

BMW announced details Thursday of its coming 1 Series M Coupe. The car will make its United States debut at the Detroit auto show in January.

The German automaker’s 3, 4, 5 and 6 Series cars have all contained high-performance M variants. But the 1 Series, which went on sale in the United States in 2007, had yet to receive attention from BMW’s in-house Motorsport tuning team.
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