You might have heard of Venturi. It’s based in Monaco and builds only electric vehicles, but that hasn’t always been the case. Founded in 1984 by a couple of engineers, Venturi was to be France’s answer to Porsche, Ferrari and Aston Martin. Back then, its thing was GT cars - mid-engined coupes with PRV (Peugeot, Renault & Volvo) V6s and Renault gearboxes and Nineties, wedge-tastic styling.
This one’s a 400 GT. It was released in 1992 (though this one’s a ‘94) and, at the time of its introduction, was the most powerful French car ever built. That meant 400bhp from the V6, giving 0-100kph in less than five seconds and a top speed of over 274kph. They handled well too, thanks to a kerbweight 225kg less than a Ferrari 355’s.
The 400 GT got this big wing, making it look very F40-ish in profile. We have no problem with this.
This particular 400 GT was ordered new by Hervé Poulain, Honorary Chairman of the auction house Artcurial and the man behind BMW’s art cars.
Hence the paintwork. It’s by a man called Jean-Yves Lacroix, and inspired by the perfume ‘Pasha de Cartier’.
This car has race history, driven by both Poulain and former Formula One driver Oliver Grouillard.
But it was eventually converted to road-going spec, and exported to Germany where it’s lived a pampered life for the last 10 years.
Now recommissioned, it’s going up for auction in Paris next year courtesy of RM Sotheby’s. There’s no reserve, but it’s so niche it could be a bargain…