My Car Quest

June 16, 2024

The Arizona Auctions Kick Off The 2015 Collector Car Market Year

by Mike –

The beginning of the 2015 classic car auction season was this past weekend in Arizona with the major auction companies recording record numbers totaling $270 million USD in sales. This does not include results from Silver and Russo and Steele but includes RM Auctions, Gooding, Bonhams and Barrett-Jackson. The final number will be even higher.

While on the surface this bodes well for the collector car market if you read the report on the RM auction you will see there were some cars at these auctions that in past years may not have made the cut. As the author, Wallace Wyss, wrote,

But even three auctions gives a potential car collector a good sampling of the way the auction market is going. If I had to coin a phrase, I would say it is “ever-expanding,” in terms of what auction companies think is collectable.

There was an all time record price set for any car sold at auction in Arizona; a Ferrari 250 LM sold for $9,625,000. The surprise here is that this is a beat up race car with an average race history that has been re-bodied twice. So, not much originality left on this Ferrari race car. Another Ferrari 250 LM was the last Ferrari to win Le Mans – that would be the Ferrari 250 LM to own for the collector who can afford it but it was not for sale this weekend.

A Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider was sold by Gooding for $7.7 million USD, which was their highest price achieved for the weekend. This Ferrari has not been fully restored like most other California Spiders and has had some custom work done early in its life including a color change from white to red and the headlights changed from open to closed (covered). The body change usually would not be taken to kindly in the collector car world but the customizer was someone who developed a reputation for building high quality and well regarded styling improvements to the original design – Tom Meade.

Not many individuals can take on the body style of an old Ferrari and create something better than the original but Tom Meade was one of the few who did this consistently.

There were also Hot Rods, continuation cars, late model cars and others that normally would not be at a Gooding, Bonham or RM auctions in Arizona. It could be that the supply of top tier collector cars that are owned by people willing to sell them now is dwindling.

Yet the sales numbers are at record levels. The buyers, and their money, are there waiting for the great cars but they are buying what then can in the meantime.

Sell your classic car on My Car Quest – click here.

1949 Mercury Convertible Custom by Dick Dean

RM – 1949 Mercury Convertible Custom by Dick Dean – Sold for $71,500

1966 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser

RM – 1966 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser – Sold for $49,500

1988 Bentley Turbo R Sports Sedan

Bonhams – 1988 Bentley Turbo R Sports Sedan – Sold for US$ 22,000

2011 Porsche 997 GT3 RS 3.8

Gooding – 2011 Porsche 997 GT3 RS 3.8 – Sold for $231,000

The Arizona Auctions Kick Off The 2015 Collector Car Market Year
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The Arizona Auctions Kick Off The 2015 Collector Car Market Year
Are the quality of the cars at the top auctions slipping?

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