07 May €260,500 paid for Bugatti Brescia (1925) found in Lake Maggiore
The 1925 open-top Type 22 is known as the Bugatti Brescia, after the Italian track where the model took the top four places at a race in 1921.It is now believed that it belonged to Max Schmuklerski, a Swiss-Polish architect who left it in store in a builder’s yard.
The builder, tired of being pestered by customs officials to pay the import taxes on the car, pushed it into the Lake Maggiore in 1936. It is believed that 20 per cent of the vehicle is salvageable and collectors and museums are likely to be keen to buy it.
The lightweight 1.5 litre, four-cylinder tourer was capable of speeds of up to 100mph.
The story of the “drowned Bugatti” was regarded locally as folklore until it was found by a diver 160ft (49m) below the surface in 1967.
After the car was left 52 meters underwater for 73 years, Jens Boerlin and other members of the Ascona sub aqua club retrieved the wreckage from Lake Maggiore on July 12, 2009.
Bonhams has confirmed that a bidder paid €260,500 for the remains of a Bugatti that was pulled from the depths of Lake Maggiore after 73 years.
The price for the 1925 Bugatti Type 22 was even more astonishing given that it had a reserve price of between €70,000 and €90,000.
The final high bidders were divided in their plans for the vehicle, with the European winner planning to display the car in its present condition.
His underbidder, an American, had planned to restore the car.