Records were broken at all three of Amelia Island Concours collectible car auctions on the weekend, with a 1960 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB Cabriolet fetching US$6,380,000 to become one of the top 100 cars ever sold at auction.

RM Sotheby’s was the official auctioneer for the Concours, and reported bidders hailing from no fewer than 22 countries, of which 22 percent were new to the company.

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There were plenty of indications that the market remains strong, including 23 cars selling for more than $1,000,000 (RM-Sothebys 13, Gooding seven and Bonhams three), and $101 million worth of cars sold in three days (RM-Sothebys $60.4m, Gooding $26.9m, Bonhams $13.9m) – both records. It was Bonhams' first Amelia sale, but the amount of money in the marketplace is clearly still growing, as last year the combined RM and Gooding & Co results totaled $66.9 million – roughly a 50 percent increase in car sales in one year.

Further testimony to the buoyancy of the market was the exceptionally high sell-through rates with Bonhams reporting 78 percent (65 from 83), Gooding 89 percent (76 from 85) and with the largest and official RM-Sotheby's sale returning a 98 percent sell-through rate (99 from 101), the entire week's sell-through finished at 89.2 percent, with 43.7 percent more cars sold this year than last.

Yet another indication of the strength of the market can be gauged by comparisons with the average car price in 2014 with 2015 ($418,862 in 2015 compared with $402,777 in 2014) and robustness of the top ten Amelia Island sales of 2014 with 2015.

Top 10 cars sold at Amelia Island – 2014

1 – 1937 Delahaye 135 Competition Roadster sold for $6,600,000 (RM)
2 – 1968 Porsche 907 Longtail Coupe sold for $3,630,000 (Gooding)
3 – 1959 Porsche 718 RSK Spyder sold for $3,300,000 (Gooding)
4 – 1955 Ferrari 250 Europa GT Coupe sold for $2,530,000 (Gooding)
5 – 1958 BMW 507 Roadster sold for $2,420,000 (RM)
6 – 1964 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster sold for $2,035,000 (Gooding)
7 – 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster sold for $1,842,500 (RM)
8 – 1958 BMW 507 Roadster sold for $1,815,000 (Gooding)
9 – 1961 Ferrari 250 GT Series 2 Cabriolet sold for $1,760,000 (RM)
10 – 1934 Duesenberg Model SJ Convertible sold for $1,567,500 (RM)

Top 10 cars sold at Amelia Island – 2015

1 – 1960 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB Cabriolet sold for $6,380,000 (RM)
2 – 1955 Jaguar D-Type sold for $3,675,000 (RM)
3 – 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 sold for $3,300,000 (Gooding)
4 – 1972 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Spider sold for $3,300,000 (RM)
5 – 1935 Mercedes-Benz 500/540 K Cabriolet A sold for $3,025,000 (RM)
6 – 1931 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Gran Sport Spider sold for $2,420,000 (RM)
7 – 1938 Bugatti Type 57C Aravis Cabriolet sold for $2,337,500 (RM)
8 – 1971 Lamborghini Miura SV sold for $2,310,000 (RM)
9 – 1988 Jaguar XJR-9 sold for $2,145,000 (RM)
10 – 1967 Shelby 427 'Semi-Competition' Cobra sold for $2,117,500 (RM)

Some people spoke of cars selling towards the bottom of their estimate range, but estimates are set based on marketplace expectations and when viewed against previous auction results for the last few years, the classic car market remains in ruddy health.

The Maserati 200SI fails to sell

The Maserati 200 SI failed to sell, being the "star attraction" at the Gooding & Company sale. This car was the first Maserati 200S produced, and was driven by Sir Stirling Moss, Jean Behra, Guiseppe Musso, Luigi Bellucci and Piero Taruffi, so along with the Ferrari 400 Superamerica Cabriolet above, the Maserati was a headliner, further enhanced by the presence of Moss on stage for the Gooding & Co auction.

Principal David Gooding, Sir Stirling Moss and master auctioneer Charlie Ross watch the Maserati reach $4.7 million before being passed in.

The facts are that the same car was sold by the same auction house for $2,640,000 less than five years ago, and bidding on the car went to $4.7 million, (actually more than $5 million including buyers premium) but failed to meet reserve. The vendor had the opportunity to sell the 59-year-old car for double its purchase price after owning it for less than five years, but chose not to. In my mind, that's an indication that the vendor has tested the market and sees further growth coming. There are those who disagree with this opinion.

David Gooding interviews Sir Stirling Moss on stage prior to the auctioning of the Maserati, a car which Sir Stirling praised for its drivability.

"Who do you think you are, Stirling Moss?"

Some of the cars driven by Sir Stirling Moss in his 14-year career, pictured at the 2015 Amelia Island Concours. He won 212 of the 529 races he started, including 16 F1 Grands Prix, but the remarkable aspect was the 84 different makes of car he raced. He could, and did, drive the wheels off anything he was given to drive.

Eighty-five-year-old Sir Stirling Craufurd Moss last raced more than half a century ago, but his legacy was on display in all it's glory at the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance.

The above question was the standard question asked by policemen when they pulled over a driver anywhere in the British Commonwealth for several decades. Moss was one of the first media celebrity drivers, something commonplace today but a novelty back in the fifties and sixties.

From Top Left: Stirling Moss with Mercedes-Benz team-mate, friend and rival Juan Manuel Fangio. Top and bottom right: 25-year-old Moss at the start of the 1955 Mille Miglia with navigator Denis Jenkinson in the Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR. Moss averaged 100 mph for the 1000 km race on public roads and his greatest victory is well documented in this article by Doug Nye. Bottom left: Moss in the Mercedes-Benz W196 on his way to a win in the 1955 British Grand Prix.

Astonishingly, all those cars behind Sir Stirling are cars he raced during his career. Often referred to as the greatest driver never to win a world title, Moss was runner-up in the F1 Drivers' Championship in 1955, 1956, 1957 and 1958, then third in 1959, 1960 and 1961.

Sir Stirling's story is a cracker, and well worth reading. We've included many of Sir Stirling's former cars in the photo gallery of the event.

1960 Ferrari 400 Superamerica Cabriolet fetches $6,380,000 to go "Top100"

As we forecast, top sale honors for the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance week went to the 1960 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB Cabriolet which fetched $6,380,000 to comfortably set a new world record for the model at auction. Proceeds from car’s sale will benefit the consignor’s charity for the education of children.

This matching-numbers (engine and chassis) 1960 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB Cabriolet is rare, and had just completed a no-expense-spared restoration by marque experts.

For those who feel they've missed out upon seeing this sale, there's a similar 1962 Ferrari 400 Superamerica Cabriolet coming up in May at the RM-Sotheby's sale of the Andrews Collection. The auction is without reserve but the estimate suggests you'll probably need more than the Amelia Island car went for because it's the original 1962 Geneva and New York show car with a rich provenance including a 145 mph run on the Bonneville salt flats. Estimates suggest it will fetch between $7,000,000 and $8,500,000.

2 – 1955 Jaguar D-Type

Estimated: $3,750,000 - $4,250,000
Sold for: $3,675,000
Official Auction Page
This D-Type has a remarkable story verified by tracing its components through two racing cars and back together again. The story is worth a read. This car has been ice-racing (successfully at that), is the only Jaguar D-Type ever to race in the Soviet Union (at the 1961 Leningrad Grand Prix where it won the Formula Libre class), was owned for many years by Swedish Davis Cup (tennis) player Curt Lincoln, and its restoration to nut-and-bolt authenticity was documented in a five-part feature series in Jaguar World Monthly magazine between December 2002 and September 2003. The absolute real deal.

3 – 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4

Estimated: $3,400,000 - $3,800,000
Sold for: $3,300,000

Official Auction Page
Not quite a barn find, but close, this 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 has been owned by the same family for 43 years and was last registered for road use in 1982. It is hence a wonderfully original example of a significant Ferrari model of which fewer than 300 were built.

The 3.3 liter V-12 of the 275 GTB/4 was the final development of the Colombo-designed engine, and though only producing a modest boost in peak power to 300 horsepower, the quad cam engine was significantly stronger across the range. The GTB also wore spectacular Pininfarina-designed Scaglietti coachwork closely and purposely modeled by Pininfarina upon the all-conquering 250 GTO.

4 – 1972 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Spider by Scaglietti

Estimated: $3,000,000 - $3,500,000
Sold for: $3,300,000

Official Auction Page

5 – 1935 Mercedes-Benz 500/540 K Cabriolet A by Sindelfingen

Estimated: $2,900,000 - $3,500,000
Sold for: $3,025,000

Official Auction Page

6 – 1931 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Gran Sport Spider by Zagato

Estimated: $2,300,000 - $2,600,000
Sold for: $2,420,000

Official Auction Page

7 – 1938 Bugatti Type 57C Aravis Cabriolet by Gangloff

Estimated: $2,500,000 - $3,250,000
Sold for: $2,337,500

Official Auction Page

8 – 1971 Lamborghini Miura SV

Estimated: $2,250,000 - $2,750,000
Sold for: $2,310,000

Official Auction Page

9 – 1988 Jaguar XJR-9

Estimated: $3,000,000 - $5,000,000
Sold for: $2,145,000

Official Auction Page We expected this car to feature a little higher up the sales ladder at Amelia Island than eighth. The 670 bhp racing Jaguar V12 has an exceptional racing provenance including numerous podiums (top three finishes) in major endurance events and a win in the 1990 Daytona 24 Hour race. The remaining example of two purpose-built, IMSA-specification XJR-9s ever built.

10 – 1967 Shelby 427 'Semi-Competition' Cobra

Estimated: $2,200,000 - $2,500,000
Sold for: $2,117,500

Official Auction Page

11 – 1961 Ferrari 250 GT Series II Cabriolet

Estimated: $2,000,000 - $2,500,000
Sold for: $2,090,000

Official Auction Page

12 – 1932 Stutz DV-32 Super Bearcat Convertible

Bonhams interface as shown during the auctioning of the Super Bearcat. The Bonhams interface remains the best of the bunch

Estimated: $850,000 - $1,200,000
Sold for: $1,760,000

Official Auction Page

13 – 1930 Cord Model L-29 Town Car

Estimated: Available Upon Request
Sold for: $1,760,000

Official Auction Page

14 – 1908 American Underslung 50HP Roadster

Estimated: $1,100,000 - $1,200,000
Sold for: $1,738,000

Official Auction Page

15 – 1991 Ferrari F40

Estimated: $1,600,000 - $1,800,000
Sold for: $1,622,500

Official Auction Page

16 – 1953 Ferrari 212 Europa Coupe by Vignale

Estimated: $2,000,000 - $2,500,000
Sold for: $1,550,000

Official Auction Page

17 – 1963 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster

Estimated: $1,600,000 - $2,000,000
Sold for: $1,275,000

Official Auction Page

18 – 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster

Estimated: $1,300,000 - $1,600,000
Sold for: $1,237,500

Official Auction Page

19 – 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.0 RSR

Estimated: $1,200,000 - $1,500,000
Sold for: $1,237,500

Official Auction Page

20 – 2011 Ferrari 599 SA Aperta

Estimated: $900,000 - $1,100,000
Sold for: $1,155,000

Official Auction Page

21 – 1930 Duesenberg Model J 'Sweep Panel' Dual-Cowl Phaeton by LeBaron

Estimated: $1,200,000 - $1,400,000
Sold for: $1,155,000

Official Auction Page

22 – 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 Sc Cabriolet

Estimated: $1,100,000 - $1,300,000
Sold for: $1,100,000

Official Auction Page

23 – 1955 Austin-Healey 100S

Estimated: $975,000 - $1,375,000
Sold for: $1,012,000

Official Auction Page

Honorable Mentions

1963 Shelby 289 Cobra

Estimated: $950,000 - $1,150,000
Sold for: $990,000

Official Auction Page

1938 Delahaye 135 MS Coupe by Figoni et Falaschi

Estimated: $1,100,000 - $1,600,000
Sold for: $990,000

Official Auction Page

1996 Porsche 993 GT2

Estimated: $950,000 - $1,250,000
Sold for: $973,500

Official Auction Page

1961 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster

Estimated: $1,100,000 - $1,300,000
Sold for: $962,500

Official Auction Page

1967 Ferrari 330 GTC

Estimated: $900,000 - $1,100,000
Sold for: $935,000

Official Auction Page

1967 Ferrari 330 GTC by Pininfarina

Sold for: $907,500

Official Auction Page

1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 Touring

Estimated: $775,000 - $975,000
Sold for: $891,000

Official Auction Page

1968 Toyota 2000GT

Estimated: $900,000 - $1,100,000
Sold for: $880,000

Official Auction Page

1932 Lincoln KB Custom Stationary Coupe

Estimated: $800,000 - $1,000,000
Sold for: $836,000

Official Auction Page

1970 Maserati Ghibli 4.7 Spyder by Ghia

Estimated: $750,000 - $900,000
Sold for: $797,500

Official Auction Page

1930 Rolls-Royce Phantom I Transformal Phaeton

Estimated: $700,000 - $1,000,000
Sold for: $742,500

Official Auction Page

Ferrari 330 P2 Junior Child’s Car by De La Chappelle

Estimated: $10,000 - $20,000
Sold for: $66,125

Official Auction Page

1958 Volkswagen Beetle Sedan

Estimated: $35,000 - $45,000
Sold for: $26,400

Official Auction Page

1981 BMW M1 Coupe

Estimated: $400,000 - $450,000
Sold for: $605,000

Official Auction Page The collectible cars of the seventies and eighties are beginning to emerge as Generation X begins to flex its financial muscle and the BMW M1 Coupe appears likely for rapid appreciation in coming years.

1970 Nissan Fairlady Z 432

The first time a Japanese domestic market 1970 Nissan Fairlady Z 432 has appeared at auction outside Japan had everyone guessing what it might fetch. The Z 432 incorporates the 160 hp, 24-valve, DOHC two liter six-cylinder engine and drivetrain of the first-generation GT-R. Only 400 were built and very few have escaped Japan. In the end, it went well above estimate.<br>(Photo: Somer Hooker/Gizmag.com)

Estimated: $150,000 - $200,000
Sold for: $253,000

Official Auction Page

Editor's Note: Our sincere thanks to Somer Hooker who stepped in at the last moment to provide many of the images and much of the wisdom of this article, all at the same time as showing his beloved Vincent in the Concours, winning a best in class award, and trying to land a car in the auctions.

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