Fort Lauderdale kick starts Auctions America’s sales season

Ford GT, Ferrari and 'Shorty' Mustang help produce $21.3 'kick start | Auctions America photo
Ford GT, Ferrari and ‘Shorty’ Mustang help produce $21.3 ‘kick start | Auctions America photo

Auctions America president Donnie Gould called it a great way to “kick start” the company’s 2015 sales calendar. Gould’s words came in response to the company’s 13th annual Ford Lauderdale auction, which generated $21.3 million in sales last week.

The same venue last year had sales of $17.5 million and a 74 percent sell-through rate. The rate last weekend was 76 percent with 368 vehicles finding new owners.

“We’re very pleased with the results from our Fort Lauderdale sale,” Gould said in a news release. “This year’s catalog represented our finest and most diverse Fort Lauderdale offering to date. The results not only speak to the breadth and quality of product presented, but also to our team’s strong international reach, extensive marketing power, and ability to locate ready and engaged buyers.

“The Fort Lauderdale auction is not only a staple on the North American collector car calendar, but as this year’s event proved, is attracting increasing global participation. The top sale of the weekend was a car that came to us from the Cayman Islands and is now headed to the UK.”

Auctions America reported bidders from 45 states and 14 countries, and that 47 percent of all buyers were new customers for the company.

The car from the Cayman Islands was a 1959 Ferrari 250 GT coupe by Pininfarina coming out of Andreas Ugland’s Cayman Motor Museum, which closed for renovations and offered nearly 40 cars and motorcycles at the Fort Lauderdale auction as it prepares to re-open with a refocused array of cars, bikes and boats next winter.

The Ferrari sold for $715,000 (prices reported include buyer’s fees).

Another highlight of the sale was the 1964 1/2 Ford Mustang III “Shorty,” a factory prototype being offered for the first time in 47 years. Ford commissioned the “Shorty” Mustang as a potential two-seat version of the car. It was built at Dearborn Steel Tubing under the guidance of designer Vince Gardner.

The car was built on a chassis shortened 16 inches and powered by a 302-cid V8 with a trio of two-barrel carburetors. Ford showed the car at several shows and displayed it at the Henry Ford Museum. Gardner was able to save it from being crushed. The car eventually was restored and shown at Amelia Island in 2013. It sold at Fort Lauderdale for $511,500.

Low-mileage Ford GTs were third- and fourth-high among sales at Fort Lauderdale. A 2005 Ford GT brought $451,000 while a 2006 Ford GT Heritage Edition with 2.7 miles showing on its odometer sold for $410,000.

Next was a 1987 Lamborghini Countach 5000 Quattrovalvole that sold for $335,500.

The auction included some cars sold for charities. A 1934 Ford Street Rod roadster brought $50,000 for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward County while a 1958 Chevrolet Bel Air sport coupe sold for $26,400 to benefit the classic car auto-restoration education program at McPherson College in Kansas.

Top 10 sales, Auctions America at Fort Lauderdale:

  1. 1959 Ferrari 250 GT, $715,000
  2. 1964 1/2 Ford Mustang III “Shorty” prototype, $511,500
  3. 2005 Ford GT, $451,000
  4. 2006 Ford GT, $410,000
  5. 1987 Lamborghini Countach 5000, $335,500
  6. 1979 Ferrari 512 BB, $286,000
  7. 1953 Cadillac Eldorado, $242,000
  8. 1961 Jaguar E-type Series 1 3.8, $215,000
  9. 1970 Ferrari Dino 246 GT, $231,000
  10. 1958 Dual-Ghia, $225,500

(All prices include buyer’s fees.)

Auctions America’s 2015 season continues May 7-9 and its annual California sale July 17-18.

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