All posts by Larry Edsall

A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the Web and becoming the author of more than 15 books. In addition to being Editorial Director at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times, writes a weekly automotive feature for The Detroit News and is an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State Univeristy.

42-car private collection up for sealed bidding in Germany

1991 Ferrari F1 racer part of private collection going to auction in Germany | Bonhams GmbH photos
1991 Ferrari F1 racer part of private collection going to auction in Germany | Bonhams GmbH photos

Bonhams GmbH, the German branch of the collector car auction company, is staging a tender sale of 42 lots from the Willi Balz Collection of cars, motorcycles and children’s vehicles. The lots will be available for inspection September 21-22 in Stuttgart, Germany, with the sale ending September 27. Bidding will be done by sealed offers on the various lots. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1989 AMO Zil 41502 armored limousine

This was Boris Yeltsin's presidential limo
This was Boris Yeltsin’s presidential limo

Presidential candidate Donald Trump has expressed his admiration for Vladimir Putin style. Well, here’s a vehicle the Republican nominee might consider should he need a new White House limousine. It’s a 1989 AMO Zil 41502, one of only 22 produced according to the advertisement placed on ClassicCars.com by a dealer in San Luis Obispo, California. Continue reading

Unrestored Porsche 550 sells for $6.1 million at Bonhams auction

Original 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder sells for an amazing $6.1 million in England | Bonhams photos
Original 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder sells for an amazing $6.1 million in England | Bonhams photos

Bonhams has announced that a preserved but unrestored 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder sold for £4,593,500 ($6,121,189) Saturday at its Goodwood Revival Sale in England. Bonhams said the figure is a world record price paid for a 550 Spyder at auction.

“The top lot of the auction is an icon of 1950s sports car design, the gloriously original 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder,” Bonhams International Group motoring director James Knight said in a news release.

550 Spyder has rear fenders with subtle blue hue
550 Spyder has rear fenders with subtle blue hue

“The car attracted much attention from bidders, with increments rising by hundreds of thousands until the gavel finally fell to achieve £4,593,500.

“The car is so original that you could travel back in time 60 years and find it in much the same condition. It’s exactly how a 550 would have looked, smelt and felt like when James Dean famously purchased his example back in 1955.”

Bonhams announced that the auction sales total was £14.5 million ($19.24 million) with a 70 percent sell-through rate.

Also selling very well as a 1950 Frazer-Nash Le Mans Replica raced by Roy Salvadori. The car sold for £610,000 ($803,987). Prices reported include buyer’s premium.

The next three highest prices were paid for Aston Martins — $606,455 each for a 1967 DB6 Vantage and 1964 DB5 and $472,131 for a 2000 Vantage Le Mans V600.

Top up on the roadster
Top up on the roadster

Top 10 sales, Bonhams Goodwood Revival Sale, 2016

1956 Porsche 550 Spyder, $6,121,180
1950 Frazer-Nash Le Mans Replica, $803,987
1967 Aston Martin DB6 Vantage, $606,455
1964 Aston Martin DB5, $606,455
2000 Aston Martin Vantage Le Mans V600, $472,131
1971 Ferrari Dino 246 GT, $399,000
1986 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Zagato coupe, $377,808
1962 Jaguar E-type Series 1 ‘flat floor’ roadster, $337,808
1960 Jaguar XK150 S roadster, $315,420
1965 Ferrari 275 GT, $300,495

(Prices include buyer’s premium.)

 

Bonhams next auction is the Robert White Collection Sale on September 19 at the Bonhams salesroom on New Bond Street, London.

My Classic Car: Duke’s 1964 Chevrolet Corvair Spyder

Acquired in 2006, this one's same color as the original coupe | Duke Millington photos
Acquired in 2006, this one’s same color as the original coupe | Duke Millington photos

After college, I obtained my first teaching position and, being single at that time, I traded in my 10-year-old junker for my first new car, a 1964 Corvair Spyder coupe. In the six years of driving the Corvair through the harsh Minnesota winters, it performed flawlessly in every aspect. Continue reading

Muhammad Ali’s RV on the block today at Mecum auction

Muhammad Ali owned this Winnebago for several years | Mecum photos
Muhammad Ali owned this Winnebago for several years | Mecum photos

A 2005 Winnebago motor home that Muhammed Ali owned until six weeks before his recent death will be offered up for bidding Saturday at Mecum Auctions’ Louisville collector car sale. Ali, the former Olympic and professional boxing champion and often polarizing advocate for various causes, was a native of Louisville. Continue reading

Porsche prices make news at RM Sotheby’s London auction

A trio of Aston Martins, with DB4GT in the middle | RM Sotheby's photos by Tim Scott
A trio of Aston Martins, with DB4GT in the middle | RM Sotheby’s photos by Tim Scott

Although the more than $3.2 million paid Wednesday for a 1960 Aston Martin DB4GT represented the top sale of the event, RM Sotheby’s believes it will be “the game-changing prices achieved for some of the Porsches which prove to be the sale’s most potent legacy.” Continue reading

Larry’s likes at Leake’s Motor City auction

Cars off the transport truck but waiting to be processed onto the Leake Motor City docket | Larry Edsall photos
Cars off the transport truck but waiting to be processed onto the Leake Motor City docket | Larry Edsall photos

Transport trucks still were arriving Thursday as I worked my way around the garage where the cars are being kept in anticipation of Leake Auction Company’s inaugural Motor City collector car sale. So I got to see only a fraction of the 300 or so cars that roll up onto the turntable at the MotorCity casino hotel Friday and Saturday in an auction being staged with sponsorship from Penske Corporation, which is sort of like the official seal of approval here in the renaissance city these days. Continue reading

Eye Candy: A day at the auctions and ACD Festival

Lights in the Auctions America arena reflect off the surfaces of a CordCord 812 Supercharged Phaeton  | Larry Edsall photos
Lights in the Auctions America arena reflect off the surfaces of a CordCord 812 Supercharged Phaeton | Larry Edsall photos

Someone said the devil is in the details. But when I look into the viewfinder of my camera, what I see in the details is delight. Here are some of the details I noticed last week when I went to Auburn, Indiana, for a few hours at the Auctions America and Worldwide Auctioneers sale, with a quick run through the parking lot of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Museum where some car owners were getting ready for the annual ACD Festival.

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Auctions America tops $21.5 million at Auburn sale

At $880,000, 1931 Duesenberg Model J was highest-priced car sold at Auburn Auction Park | Auctions America photos
At $880,000, 1931 Duesenberg Model J was highest-priced car sold at Auburn Auction Park | Auctions America photos

Auctions America’s annual Fall Sale, held over the Labor Day weekend at the Auburn Auction Park in northeastern Indiana, posted more than $21.5 million in sales with a 79 percent sell-through rate. The event drew more than 85,000 visitors, a record attendance, including bidders from 45 states and 12 countries. Auctions America said 30 percent of those bidders were new customers.

Continue reading

Cobble Beach: Like Pebble Beach, but with a Canadian accent

Getting properly aligned for the awards presentation on the shores of Georgian Bay | Cobble Beach concours photos
Getting properly aligned for the awards presentation on the shores of Georgian Bay | Cobble Beach concours photos

The United States has Pebble Beach. But Canada has Cobble Beach, and “our stones are bigger,” Rob McLeese notes with a chuckle as he prepares to host Cobble Beach’s fourth annual concours d’elegance on the shores of Georgian Bay some 130 miles northwest of Toronto.

The Canadian concours takes place September 17-18 on the nearly 600 acres of the Cobble Beach Golf Resort. Continue reading