James Bond and barn finds: Aston Martin sale hits $6.46 million

An Aston Martin DB5, the favored ride of 007, was the auction's highest seller | Bonhams photos
An Aston Martin DB5, the favored ride of 007, was the auction’s highest seller | Bonhams photos

James Bond magic lifted the sale of a 1964 Aston Martin DB5, the same model driven by the fictional British spy, to £561,500 ($725,600) to top Bonhams 18th annual Aston Martin auction, held Saturday at the automaker’s ancestral home at Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire, UK.

The sale achieved more than £5 million ($6.46 million), with all reported results including auction fees. The overall results include 25 Astons sold of the 42 cars offered, plus nearly all of a huge selection of Aston Martin- and Lagonda-related automobilia, parts, artworks, clothing and literature.

A 1989 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante X-Pack reached a half million dollars
A 1989 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante X-Pack reached a half million dollars

Other top-selling cars included a 1961 Aston Martin DB4 Series III 4.2-liter Sports Saloon, sold for £399,100 ($516,000) and a 1970 Aston Martin DB6 Mark 2 Vantage Sports Saloon, which went for £382,300 ($494,000).

More-modern Aston Martins also found appreciative buyers, with a 1989 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante X-Pack 7.0-liter going for £389,900 ($500,000), a 2000 Aston Martin Vantage Le Mans coupe sold for £309,500 ($400,000) and a 1997 Aston Martin Vantage V600 coupe reaching £225,000 ($291,000).

An all-out Aston Martin competition car, a 1960 DB4 4.5-liter lightweight said to be ready for vintage racing, sold for £236,700 ($305,000). A 1996 Aston Martin V8 Sportsman Estate Car, one of just three converted to “shooting brake” (two-door wagon) configuration, sold for £337,500.

A 'barn-find' 1957 Aston Martin DB2/4 sold for $70,000 despite its rotten condition
A ‘barn-find’ 1957 Aston Martin DB2/4 sold for $70,000 despite its rotten condition

The British affection for artfully decrepit “barn finds” resulted in the £54,625 ($70,600) sale of a rotted 1957 Aston Martin DB2/4 MkII Sports Saloon that had been in storage for nearly four decades.

“Even in our 18th year at the Aston Martin Works, we are seeing a continued interest and enthusiasm for our sale,” Tim Schofield, head of Bonhams’ Motoring Department UK, said in a news release. “Bonhams prides itself on the breadth of its offerings at auction, and despite its single-marque status, this sale is no different.

“With lots ranging from a barn-find projects to race-ready lightweight competition cars, this sale had something for all admirers of the Aston Martin and Lagonda marques.”

Top 10 sales, Bonhams’ Newport Pagnell auction 2017:

1964 Aston Martin DB5, £561,500 ($725,600)
1961 Aston Martin DB4 Series III 4.2-liter Sports Saloon, £399,100 ($516,000)
1989 Aston Martin V8 Vantage Volante X-Pack 7.0-liter, £389,900 ($500,000)
1970 Aston Martin DB6 Mark 2 Vantage Sports Saloon, £382,300 ($494,000)
1996 Aston Martin V8 Sportsman Estate Car £337,500 ($436,000)
2000 Aston Martin Vantage Le Mans coupe sold for £309,500 ($400,000)
1967 Aston Martin DB6 Vantage Sports Saloon sold for £292,700 ($378,000)
1989 Aston Martin V8 Zagato Volante sold for £281,500 ($364,000)
1997 Aston Martin Vantage V600 coupe sold for £253,500 ($328,000)
1960 Aston Martin DB4 4.5-liter lightweight competition, £236,700 ($304,800)

(All results include auction fees. US dollar equivalents rounded off for clarity)

Bonhams’ next collector car auction takes place May 21 at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps motorsports facility in Belgium. For information, visit the auction website.

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