Rare Invicta classic car coming to Bonhams

Bonhams' classic car auction at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu, UK takes place on September 2.

And while vintage Rolls-Royces and Ferraris will dominate the upper echelons of the sale, further down the pecking order is a car that will stir the emotions in many.

Invicta Black Prince

The first UK car to feature fully automatic transmission

A 1951 Invicta Black Prince Shooting Brake is expected to sell for £22,000-26,000 ($28,000-$34,000).

What's so special about the UK-made car?

Just 16 were built (Invicta folded during manufacture). Only 12 are thought to remain. And it's pure 1950s luxury, boasting an interior of polished wood and leather – as well as fully automatic transmission, the first UK car to offer it.

Touted as the world's most advanced car, the Black Prince was Invicta's first post second world war vehicle. It was also its last.

Bought new for a huge £3,820 in 1951 (more than the price of the average house), it has since had five owners – all attracted to the opulence of the Invicta brand.

"This matching-numbers car also comes with the original, rare, and highly prized Black Prince mascot in the form of a medieval knight in silver and enamel – a collector's item in its own right," explains Bonhams.

Invicta produced cars in three separate spells between 1925 and the early 1950s.

A 1927 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost "Piccadilly" Roadster is among the predicted top lots. It has a high estimate of £220,000-240,000 ($286,000-312,000).

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