The origins of the famous saying 'One drives an Alfa Romeo, is driven in a Rolls-Royce, but gives only a Delage to his favorite mistress' remains unknown. The company's slogan, however, was 'The Car with a Reputation' and 'Gained by Performance.'
In 1905, Louis Delage started his automobile company in Courbevoie on the Seine and within a year's time had begun racing and winning. The victories scored on the racing circuit helped build the company's reputation. His obsession to win the European Grand Prix Championship was realized in 1927. His passion for racing helped spawn many memorable and milestone designs. With his dream realized, he closed his race department, sold off his race cars and returned to the manufacture of automobiles.
The D8 series was introduced in 1929 and was fitted with a straight-eight engine offering just over 100 horsepower. The chassis sold for a staggering $3,125, which was half that of an Hispano-Suiza. In 1931, Delage offered a sports version, the D8S. Offered only on the short, 130-inch wheelbase, the car had a lowered chassis and an engine that produced 120 horsepower. The Autocar tested one to 99 mph, and then demonstrated a zero-to-sixty time of 15 seconds - performing better than a supercharged Bentley.
There were fewer than 100 D8Ss sold. By 1935, Delage was financially devastated and had to sell out to arch-rival Delahaye, which continued production albeit at $5,220 for a bare chassis, nearly $2,000 more.
Louis Delage proudly claimed that his cars won more awards at concours d'elegances of the time than any other marque. Most Delages wore bodies by French coachbuilders, though this car sports coachwork by the conservative British firm of Freestone & Webb. This D8S Coupe is one of the fewer than 20 D8S models known to survive of the 99 built, and the only one bodied by Freestone & Webb.
Most of the Delages typically wore flamboyant coachwork by French designers. This car was first owned by Earl of Stadbroke, who commissioned British coachbuilder Freestone & Webb to body this D8S. Founded in 1923, the first was often associated with Bentley and Rolls-Royce. They were one of the first to take out a Weymann license and later developed a relationship with Mercedes-Benz that lasted until the end of the 1930s. At times, the firm would produce more intimate bodies. It is believed that only one Delage D8S was bodied by the Northwest London concern. It is fitted with central lubrication, Marchal headlamps and driving lights, a pillar-mounted spotlight, Andre adjustable shock absorbers and a radiator-mounted Delage Auto Thermometer.
In 2002, the car was acquired by the Milhous Brothers of Boca Raton, Florida. It remained a part of their collection until early 2012 when it was purchased by its current owner.
This D8S is painted in a sinister black with la contrasting tan leather interior and carpets. The dashboard is fitted with Jaeger instrumentation calibrated in Imperial units.
In 2012, this car was offered for sale at the Pebble Beach, CA auction presented by Gooding & Company. It was estimated to sell for $550,000 - $650,000 and offered without reserve. As bidding came to a close, the car had been sold for the sum of $522,500, inclusive of buyer's premium.Also photographed at :