Tuesday, 11 October 2011

De Dion Bouton

Well, it doesn't get a lot more retro than this. The De Dion Bouton is the world's oldest working car (arguably - depends how you define 'car' really; the Cugnot Steam Tractor predates this by 115 years), its steam-powered perambulation breaking onto the scene in 1884, a full year before Karl Benz's petrol-powered Patent Motorwagen. The front-mounted boiler enabled it to reach a top speed of 37mph, which would frankly be more than enough on thin wooden wheels steered by a tiller.
...and it's just sold at auction for a whopping £2.9m. That's about seventy-eight grand per mph, which makes it more expensive than the first 37mph of any car sold, ever. Probably.

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