Sunday, January 25, 2015


The 2015 Arizona Collector Car Auction Roundup

January in Phoenix is usually a magic time. The weather is comfortable and the skies are azure. The snowbirds are back so the roads have become even more hazardous. The golf courses are green and greens fees are approaching interstellar. And our citrus trees are full of oranges and grapefruit.

It is also the time when the big collector car auctions return and when locals pull the sunbrella covers off of their prized rolling stock and go cruising.

The car auctions also just seem to get bigger each year. The volume of exceptional cars filling the tents at the RM, Gooding, Barrett Jackson, Bonham and Russo and Steele auctions was amazing and the prices they fetched prove it.

This year set new records for high dollar car sales. This was another Ferrari year. Of the 42 vehicles selling for more than $1,000,000, sixteen were Ferrari's. Two Ferrari's flirted netted $9.6 and $9.4 M respectively. In fact, these top transactions alone accounted for $101,757,000 in sales

The top sales in order:

This year RM topped the list in sales of high dollar cars. In fact they sold over $40 M in million dollar plus cars. This year they sold a 64 Ferrari 250 LM by Scaglietti for $9.6 M blowing through last years record sale at $8.8 for a 56 Ferrari GT California LWB at $8.8 M. In fact, RM alone sold over $29 M just in Ferrari's. They rounded out their sales with a bunch of Mercedes Benz 300SL's and a couple of Porsches. All of RM's top sales were European.

Next Came

The Gooding Auction:
The Gooding Auction sold over $27 M in high dollar cars. Of those cars $17.7 M was just Ferrari. They sold a 59 250 GT California Spider for $7.7 M and a 62 400 Superamerica for $4 M. Of the 11 cars that Gooding's sold for over $1 M Only one was American (a 64 Shelby).

Followed by

The Barrett Jackson:
Barrett Jackson netted about $19.9 M in the million dollar club. Unlike RM and Goodings, The top dollar cars at the Barrett Jackson were American. They sold a 66 Shelby Cobra for $5.1 M and re-sold Harley Earl's 1950 GM Futureliner (Bus from the Pratte Collection) for $4,000,000.  Mr Pratte donated the proceeds from the Futureliner sale to charity). Pratte's 54 Sleek Bonneville concept car went for $3.3 M.


Bonham's had $13,1 in high dollar cars with their top car being a 66 Ferrari 275 GTB which sold for $9.4 M.

And finally

Russo and Steele:
Russo and Steele had only one car in the million dollar club. It was a 57 Mercedes Benz 300 SL Roadster that sold for $1.4 M.

A Day at the Barrett Jackson
For pure theater you can't beat the Barrett Jackson. The shear number of cars they sell coupled with its unsurpassed people watching opportunities make it my favorite. Being Scottsdale, the BJ is always  filled with the usual parade of scary plastic surgery augmented "Barbie meets Vampira" clones walking around in their surgically installed skinny pants. To the uninitiated Scottsdale is kind of where Stepford meets the desert.

Here are some of my snaps,,,

1954 Pontiac Bonneville Motorama Concept
Sold for $3,300,000

1949 Talbot Lago T26 Grand Sport by Franay
Sold for $1,650,000

1935 Duesenberg Dual Cowl Phaeton
Did Not Meet Reserve

I Love Hood Art
This One is A Packard

Here is One is From a 1932 Plymouth 2 Door Coupe

And This One is From a 1926 Franklin

1925 Rolls Royce Springfield Silver Ghost Riviera Town Car
Did Not Meet Reserve

1957 Ford Skyliner Retractable
Sold for $110,000

There were some new cars from Ford and Lincoln on display (which demonstrated how wonderful both lines are getting). And there was also the usual kitsch for sale.  If you ever need and old gas pump, slot machine, neon sign or autographed photo of Sylvester Stallone, you know where to come.

And, as always, despite Arizona's ban on smoking in public places, there is always the pervasive cigar smoke in the air (usually attached to fat guys with gold chains). The cigar smoke masks the smells from the stands selling every conceivable cardiac arrest food ever conceived.  

Gotta love it.

We finished up by watching a few "Thursday" cars go under the gavel. 

For Roadboy's photos from 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014 (I didn't post for 2011) Click Here:

See you next year in Scottsdale!

Roadboy's Travels © 2015

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