Category archives: Auctions

Worldwide’s Arizona debut includes two million-dollar sales

The 1965 Mercedes-Benz 230SL roadster originally owned by John Lennon sells for $225,000, plus commission, at Worldwide auction | Larry Edsall photos
The 1965 Mercedes-Benz 230SL roadster originally owned by John Lennon sells for $225,000, plus commission, at Worldwide auction | Larry Edsall photos

Worldwide Auctioneers made its debut Wednesday night at Arizona Car Week with a well-attended — standing-room-only — sales room and  a nicely loaded 82-car docket that was so well received that two cars each sold for a million dollars or more.

The million-dollar cars were a 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L-88 roadster and a 1955 Lancia Aurelia GT B24S Spider America. Continue reading

What caught Andy’s eye at Bonhams’ Scottsdale auction

Bonhams has brought a strong selection of cars for the Scottsdale auction | Andy Reid photos
Bonhams has brought a strong selection of cars for the Scottsdale auction | Andy Reid photos

Bonhams is celebrating its fourth year in Scottsdale, and this year’s selection of cars is the best the venerable auction house has ever had here in the desert, as well as being among the best offerings of any of the seven auction companies working Arizona Car Week. This includes my second-favorite car ever offered for sale at any auction anywhere.

As always is the case, Bonhams has a bit of something for every price level, and my picks of cars that I would most want to take home reflect that.

1958 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spider Veloce
This beautiful gray Alfa Giulietta is one of the nicer restorations I have ever seen. Not usually my favorite color on these cars, but combined with the red seats, it works wonderfully. I have enough time behind the wheel of these Alfas to know that the driving experience is amazing, and this car is so nice that I would keep it forever.
1958 Alfa Spider
1969 Chevrolet Corvette L88
Those who know me are thinking, “Seriously, a C3 Corvette on a list of cars you want?” Well, seriously, the stigma of the C3 is gone and an L88 is truly a weapons-grade sports car, likely able to keep up with and then easily pass any 275 GTB/4 Ferrari on a vintage rally, and likely to cause much consternation in the process. This car is a great example, and I asked a friend, Bonhams specialist Steffan Frisk, to fire it up. The sound was exciting and immediately made me want it.
1969 L88
2003 Aston Martin Vanquish
The gentleman’s alternative to the L88 Vette, a Vanquish has been on my list for a long time. This example with only 15k miles and in a great black color just ticks all the boxes. These cars are on the rise and I want to buy one before they double in value.
Aston Vanquish
1956 Porsche Speedster
I love Speedsters, especially the early cars with the beehive taillights. The first Porsche I ever drove was a ‘56 Speedster, and it has stuck with me over the years. This Aquamarine Blue Metallic car is an extremely well-restored No. 1 condition car that I would personally love to drive into a No. 2 condition car.
1956 Porsche speedster
1952 Ferrari 340 America
This Ferrari represents the beginning of the marque’s long and storied racing history. It competed in the 1952 Mille Miglia, the 24 Hours of Le mans, and the Targa Florio. It was a factory team car and was driven my Taruffi, Trintignant and Bracco. It is eligible for any and all concours and vintage-racing events and rallies, aside from London to Brighton. How much better does it get in a single car?
1952 Ferrari 340 America
1963 Iso Rivolta
These are the easiest-to-live-with Italian GT cars ever built, with stunning Italian coachwork combined with a reliable Chevrolet Corvette powertrain. This Iso Rivalto has a manual transmission and is a great example of a truly world class GT car. A Iso Rivolta like this in a great color combination of silver paint with maroon leather would make a tour car par excellence. I loved this gentleman express.
iso
1977 Honda Civic CVCC
This little yellow Civic is the nicest example I have seen since they were new. It needs nothing, and if entered would likely win Best of Show at ClassicCars.com’s Future Classics car show. It is easier to find a really nice Ferrari California Spider for sale than it is a Civic as nice as this one. This is a future classic that is guaranteed to increase in value while it sips very little gas.
honda
1984 Ferrari 308 GTS QV
Sure it is a 308, but this Ferrari is one of the cars used in one of my favorite TV shows, Magnum P.I. This is the car that is one of my all-time favorite auction cars, second only to the DB5 form the movie Goldfinger. I will in fact be bidding on it, but I expect it to sell for much more than I am willing to spend. I will be test driving it Wednesday to see if it is everything that I hoped it would be.
magnum pi 308

Economic impact: Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale sale boosts local economy by $168 million, study reports

Barrett-Jackson has been the anchor of Arizona Car Week for nearly 50 years | Larry Edsall photos
Barrett-Jackson has been the anchor of Arizona Car Week for nearly 50 years | Larry Edsall photos

After nearly every collector car auction, the auction houses publish on their websites a list of all lots that sold, and for how much. Some also will share information on the high bid on lots that didn’t sell. In most cases, the auction houses also issue a news release listing an overall sales total, a sell-through rate and a list of the 10 lots that brought the most money. Continue reading

Fifth graders enthused with their introduction to car collecting

Fifth graders raise their paddles as they bid on scale models of classic cars | Larry Edsall photos
Fifth graders raise their paddles as they bid on scale models of classic cars | Larry Edsall photos

If you wanted to see enthusiastic bidding on classic cars, you needed to be inside the Worldwide Auctioneers’ tent in Scottsdale, Arizona, on Friday morning when 120 fifth graders were introduced to the wonderful world of collector vehicles. Continue reading

Finest auctions working toward Boca Raton, Danbury sales

Bradley Farrell preparing for the Finest's first auction in its Connecticut facility | The Finest photos
Bradley Farrell preparing for the Finest’s first auction in its Connecticut facility | The Finest photos

Bradley Farrell may be the owner and chief executive, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t handle seemingly mundane tasks as his year-old collector car auction company prepares for its upcoming sales.

One of those sales will take place this spring in The Finest Automobile Auctions’ 48,000-square-foot headquarters and showroom in Danbury, Connecticut, where the CEO sweeps the floors when he’s not negotiating for an auction consignment or working on yet another way to revolutionize the collector car auction process. Continue reading

Arizona auctions again awash in Porsches as values hold

A restored 1967 Porsche 911S is among Barrett-Jackson's collection of Porsches | Barrett-Jackson
A restored 1967 Porsche 911S is among Barrett-Jackson’s collection  | Barrett-Jackson

Just when you thought the Porsche passion had crested, a new wave of 911s, 356s, race cars and exotics from the German sports car brand washes into the Scottsdale/Phoenix area for the seven auctions of Arizona Car Week. The prophesized burst of the bubble has not occurred, although values have flattened somewhat.

The classic 911 experienced the greatest run-up in prices during the past four years, with many former entry-level models reaching toward six figures, and more-desirable cars going well beyond. The upcoming Arizona auctions are again awash in 911s, with the total number just slightly less than last year’s selection. Continue reading

Rocker, racer among stars offering charity cars at Barrett-Jackson

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1970 Chevrolet Chevelle created by Dale Earndheart Jr. | Barrett-Jackson photos

In 1967, Russ Jackson and Tom Barrett organized a Scottsdale car show to benefit local charities. By 1972, the car show had transformed into a classic car auction and has continued to support charities over the years, including the Barrett-Jackson Cancer Research Fund, established in memory of Russ and Brian Jackson.

Continue reading

Live, from Scottsdale, it’s Barrett-Jackson: Auction celebrating 20th anniversary of live television

1970 Plymouth Superbird  is among the cars on the docket for Barrett-Jackson's Scottsdale auction | Larry Edsall photos
1970 Plymouth Superbird is among the cars on the docket for Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale auction | Larry Edsall photos

Hard to believe that 20 years ago, about the only automotive-oriented programming on television was MotorWeek, produced by Maryland Public Television and seen on many PBS stations. Continue reading

Mecum opens Kissimmee with muscle-flexing weekend

1969 Plymouth Hemi GTX convertible is one of 11 | Mecum Auctions photos
1969 Plymouth Hemi GTX convertible is one of 11 | Mecum Auctions photos

Muscle cars were what bidders wanted during the opening weekend of Mecum Auctions’ huge sale at Kissimmee, Florida, where a 1969 Plymouth Hemi GTX convertible led the “sold” parade, hammering at $230,000 (Mecum does not include buyers’ premium fees in its price reporting). Continue reading