Monterey Car Week Auctions: The cars that fetched more than a million
The Monterey Car Week auctions have come and gone, and the analysts are still trying to sort through the numbers to figure out what they mean. There were more auctions and more cars presented this year than ever before, and the two biggest collectible car auction houses (RM Sotheby's and Gooding & Co.) grew sales considerably year-on-year, but the overall gross take for the combined auctions comes in at within a few dollars of last year's record numbers.
Rick Cole auctions, which sold US$24.5 million in 2014 (the first year of its app-based auction system), had still not concluded its sales as we finalized this article so the best comparison between 2014 and 2015 we can offer right now is by removing the Rick Cole figures from 2014. That gives a gross sales figure of $402.8 million in 2014 versus $401.2 million in 2015 – essentially, the magnitude of the marketplace remained almost unchanged.
Exactly what this means is hard to divine and there will be many theories advanced over the coming months as we see the individual model price benchmarks established in Monterey flow on to other elite auctions over the next few months before the Scottsdale round of auctions in January, 2016. Scottsdale is the second most important venue in the collectible car market, followed by Amelia Island in March.
Elite level collectible cars are sold at auction by a surprisingly small group of auction houses, with RM-Sotheby's the largest, Gooding & Co second largest and Bonhams third (though much stronger in Europe).Between the big three, roughly 85 percent of collectible cars are sold.
The significant remaining auctions of 2015
Of those auction houses which regularly sell top tier cars, there are only a handful of auctions remaining for the year. Gooding & Company has finished its schedule for the year, while RM-Sotheby's has three auctions: London on September 7, Hershey on October 8-9 and New York on November 18.
Bonhams has the largest schedule with the Beaulieu sale at the National Motor Museum (UK) on September 5, the Chantilly Sale (France) on September 5, the Goodwood Revival Sale on September 12, the Frederiksen Auction in Denmark on September 26, the Preserving the Automobile Sale at the Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum in Philadelphia on October 5, the Zoute Sale in Brussels on October 9, the London to Brighton Run Sale on October 30, the Bond Street Sale on December 6, the December Sale at Hendon RAF Museum on December 10, and (Land Rover) Defender 2,000,000 Sale on December 16.
Mecum, Barrett-Jackson, Coys, H&H Classics, and Artcurial will also all have sales including "million dollar cars" before the end of the year, so it will be fascinating to watch just how defining the Monterey 2015 auctions have become for the collectible car marketplace and the prices the cars fetch.
Is the bubble set to burst?
We don't think so, though we'll wait until we've had a chance to correlate all the results before our more thorough analysis goes to press. Some initial thoughts though, are that the selection of cars that come to auction can considerably influence the overall result.
Last year, one car sold for $38 million, representing close to 10 percent of the entire week's take. Without a car of such gravitas this year, Bonhams' sales gross for 2015 of $46,738,000 (with a 90 percent sell-through rate) was well down on last year's $108,000,000 (with a 92 percent sell-through rate).
Yet what Bonhams' failed to add to the 2015 results, the others of the big three made up for. Though the results are incomplete, the number of "million dollar cars" will remain in the mid-eighties, and more "ten million dollar cars" were sold than ever before.
Gooding's two-day sale saw 115 of 129 lots (for an 89 percent sell-through rate) and the company's highest ever average price of $1,113,896 per car.
A commonly heard phrase from the auctioneer's lectern this year was "I just need one more bid" as the two best personality-based auctioneer/entertainers in the business, Charlie Ross (Gooding & Co, pictured above) and Max Girardo (RM-Sotheby's), attempted to raise the bidding above often optimistic reserves.
This year several $5 million plus cars were passed in with world record bids for the model considered unacceptable, so the movement of several percentage points of the entire market comes down to the whims of vendors whose opinions on the value of their cars is marginally at odds with the money on the day.
Sell-through rates remained remarkably high and taking out the extraordinary sale of the Ferrari 250 GTO as an "outlier" last year, the market has risen steadily for the last five years.
Numerous world records were broken at Monterey this year, including the Pinnacle Portfolio setting a new auction benchmark for a single-day, single-vendor auction at $75.4 million (the Ferrari 250 California Spider was sold for $8.5 million just after auction, raising the number from our initial auction report), with RM Sotheby’s setting a new record for a collector car auction at $172.9 million beating its own 2014 record from Monterey of $143.4 million.
Our initial analysis of the all-important Monterey sales is that the elite top tier cars continued to go up in value, but there has been a slight softening in the mid-range between $500,000 and $1.5 million. On the other hand, if the Pinnacle Portfolio had not come to market this year, we may be viewing the results in a different light.
There are many ways of assessing the strength of the market, and one is to look at a certain depth (say the value of the tenth sale), so we've assembled the top ten from Monterey for the last few years. By this measure, the market appears to be continuing to strengthen for elite level cars.
Top 10 sales from Monterey 2015
- 1964 Ferrari 250LM, sold for $17,600,000 (RM Sotheby’s)
- 1961 Ferrari 250GT California SWB Spider $16,830,000 (Gooding)
- 1962 Ferrari 250GT SWB Speciale $16,500,000 (Gooding)
- 1998 McLaren F1 $13,750,000 (RM Sotheby’s)
- 1953 Jaguar C-type lightweight roadster $13,200,000 (RM Sotheby’s)
- 1956 Ferrari 250GT Berlinetta Competizione TdF $13,200,000 (RM Sotheby’s)
- 1982 Porsche 956 $10,120,000 (Gooding)
- 1959 Ferrari 250GT Interim $8,525,000 (Bonhams)
- 1959 Ferrari 250GT California LWB Spider $8,500,000 (RM Sotheby’s)
- 1950 Ferrari 275 S/340 America Barchetta $7,975,000 (RM Sotheby’s)
Top 10 sales from Monterey 2014
- 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Coupe $38,115,000 (Bonhams)
- 1964 Ferrari 275 GTB/C Speciale Coupe $26,400,000 (RM Auctions)
- 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California SWB Spyder $15,180,000 (Gooding & Co)
- 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB Competizione Clienti Coupe $13,200,000 (Rick Cole)
- 1964 Ferrari 250 LM Coupe $11,550,000 (RM)
- 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 Coupe $10,175,000 (RM)
- 1953 Ferrari 250 MM Coupe $7,260,000 (Bonhams)
- 1965 Ford GT40 Prototype Roadster $6,930,000 (RM)
- 1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Speciale Aerodinamica Coupe $6,875,000 (Bonhams)
- 1958 Ferrari 250 Series 1 Cabriolet $6,820,000 (Bonhams)
Top 10 sales from Monterey 2013
- 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4*S NART Spyder $27,500,000 (RM)
- 1957 Ferrari 250 GT TdF Berlinetta $9,460,000 (Gooding)
- 1953 Ferrari 375 MM Spyder $9,075,000 (RM)
- 1937 Bugatti Type 57SC Atalante $8,745,000 (Gooding)
- 1997 McLaren F1 Coupe $8,470,000 (Gooding)
- 1928 Mercedes-Benz 680S Torpedo Roadster $8,250,000 (RM)
- 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540K Special Roadster $7,480,000 (RM)
- 1955 Ferrari 250 GT Competizione Berlinetta $7,150,000 (Gooding)
- 1948 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Competizione Coupe $4,840,000 (Gooding)
- 1931 Bentley 4.5-Litre Supercharged Le Mans Roadster $4,647,500 (Bonhams)
Top 10 sales from Monterey 2012
- 1936 Mercedes-Benz 540K Special Roadster $11,770,000 (Gooding)
- 1960 Ferrari 250 GT California LWB Competizione Spyder $11,275,000 (Gooding)
- 1968 Ford GT40 Gulf/Mirage Coupe $11,000,000 (RM)
- 1962 Ferrari 250 California GT SWB Spyder $8,580,000 (RM)
- 1955 Ferrari 410 S Berlinetta $8,250,000 (RM)
- 1956 Ferrari 250 GT TdF Coupe $6,710,000 (RM)
- 1957 Ferrari 250 GT California LWB Prototype Spyder $6,600,000 (Gooding)
- 1955 Ferrari 857 Sport $6,270,000 (Gooding)
- 1928 Bentley Le Mans 4 1/2 Liter $6,050,000 (Gooding)
- 1972 Porsche 917/10 Spyder $5,830,000 (Mecum)
We'll have lots more analysis in the coming weeks as we track the collectible car and motorcycle markets and the final significant rounds of auctions of 2015. For now, here's a list of links and prices on all the cars which sold for more than one million dollars at Monterey in 2015. The results from the Rick Cole auctions will be added to this listing the moment they are available.
$17,600,000 – 1964 Ferrari 250 LM
Lot 113 Auction Link
Only 34 LMs were ever built, including the car that won the race it was built to win (the 24 Hours of Le Mans, hence the name), becoming the last Ferrari to do so. This particular car had never had a major collision and retained all of its original mechanical components.
Formerly part of the Matsuda Collection, Ferrari Classiche certified, and shown at the 1964 and 1966 Earls Court Motor Shows, this "weapons-grade Ferrari" now has another honor to it's name – the most expensive LM ever sold at auction, giving the model three entries in the top 20 most valuable cars ever sold.
LMs rarely come to auction, and those that do have made the top 10 global annual prices every time going back for two decades. The previous world record price for a Ferrari 250 LM of $14,300,000 was set in New York at RM-Sotheby's Art of the Automobile auction in November, 2013 and a second 250 LM sold for $11,550,000 at Pebble Beach last year, with another 250 LM selling for $9,625,000 in Scottsdale earlier this year.
$16,830,000 – 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider
Lot 129 Auction Link
Sold by the colourful Lord Irvine Laidlaw, this particular car was sold in very original condition according to auctioneers Gooding & Company, and "has not been the subject of a full restoration, nor has it made the rounds at various Concours’ d’Elegance, offering its new owner the pride and pleasure of being the 1st to exhibit this car at the most exclusive international events."
In addition to Lord Laidlaw's contribution to the provenance, it is believed to have been owned by Gunther Sachs, the prominent German playboy with family links to both Opel and Sachs. It's quite likely Gunther courted his second wife, Brigitte Bardot, in this car.
$16,500,000 – 1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Speciale
Lot 39 Auction Link
This is a genuine one-of-a-kind 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Speciale designed by a collaboration between Nuncio Bertone and a 23–year–old Giorgetto Giugiaro and built by Nuncio’s legendary house of Carrozzeria Bertone as his personal car. Inspired by Ferrari’s "shark-nose" 156 F1 world-championship-winning Grand Prix car, with recognizable elements of the 330 TRI LM and 246 SP sports racing cars, the signature feature of Giugiaro’s design was its “shark-nose” front-end treatment.
A prime example of the coachbuilder’s art, the Berlinetta Speciale was introduced at the 1962 Geneva Auto Show, then at the annual carrozzerie exhibition at the Biscaretti Museum in Torino where it was showcased alongside Pinin Farina’s Superfast III, a Touring-bodied Maserati 3500 GT, and a Dual-Ghia L6.4. Auto Italiana.
$13,750,000 – 1998 McLaren F1 LM-Spec
Lot 107 Auction Link
The McLaren F1 is heading for the same sort of superstardom as the Ferrari GTO on the auction block, being the most significant supercar of the modern era. The rationale behind this statement is clearly elaborated on in our top 100 cars article, but it boils down to its naturally-aspirated motor (still the fastest, non-forced-induction car ever), pioneering composite construction, drivability and racetrack success ad infinitum.
The most valuable McLaren F1 of all will be the LM, because there were only five ever made (and the Sultan of Brunei bought two of them). This particular car is exceptional because, although it was the second-last road-spec F1 built, it was one of just two cars upgraded by McLaren Special Operations with an LM-spec engine. This means it retains its luxury interior and all modern conveniences, including satnav and the Extra High Downforce Package plus a Le-Mans-winning engine. A classic car with all modern conveniences, a ten million dollar price tag, and it's still not old enough to vote.
$13,200,000 – 1956 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Competizione 'Tour de France'
Lot 332 Auction Link
Only 77 of Ferrari's "Tour de France" models were ever built, with every one sold in the last five years fetching more than $3,000,000 and the two most recent highlights being a 1956 model which sold for £4,872,000 ($7,862,554) in London last September, and a similar car which fetched $6,710,000 during Monterey Car Week in 2012.
This particular car now holds the record price for the model and rightfully so, because this isn't just any Tour de France model, but THE car that gave the model its name through winning the 1956 Tour de France Auto, an automotive equivalent to the famous bicycle race that predates it by four years and indeed, a race that was France's equivalent to Italy's Mille Miglia or Sicily's Targa Florio. One of only seven Scaglietti-bodied first-series competition Berlinettas, but in historical terms, it is even more significant because it was owned and raced by one of motorsport's larger-than-life figures, the Marquis Alfonso de Portago.
$13,200,000 – 1953 Jaguar C-Type Works Lightweight
Lot 235 Auction Link
There were just 53 C-Type Jaguars built. Three lightweight works cars (of which this car is one), and a run of 50 cars to satisfy customer demand after the factory cars finished first, second and fourth in the 1953 Le Mans 24 Hour event in the first successful racing application of disc brakes.
Endurance racing was born to demonstrate reliability and validate new automotive technologies for the masses and just as it has done more recently with hybrid and diesel drivetrains, Le Mans heralded the coming of age of a new braking technology with this car and its works siblings.
The winning C-type was the first to average more than 100 mph for the 24 Hours of Le Mans (105.8 mph, 170 km/h), and this car, which finished fourth, also broke the ton, averaging 104 mph (167 km/h). Equally at home in any of the world’s finest concours or vintage rallies, this car represents a landmark in Jaguar history.
$10,120,000 – 1982 Porsche 956
Lot 50 Auction Link
Though officially estimated to sell for between $7,000,000 and $9,000,000, we tipped that this car "could crack the $10,000,000 mark if the right gentleman racer wants to go racing in fashion." That was obviously the case as it became the most valuable Porsche ever sold at auction.
This car finished second in the 1982 Le Mans 24 Hour Race in the hands Jochen Mass and Vern Schuppan, taking part in the iconic 1-2-3 victory (pictured above), then served as the Porsche team’s top car for the remainder of the season, primarily driven by Ickx, Mass, and Bell.
In September and October of 1982, this car (956-003) won the last three World Endurance Championship (WEC) races (Spa, Fuji, and Brands Hatch) of the WEC season and a non-championship race at Kyalami (South Africa), securing the WEC Drivers’ Championship for Ickx and the Manufacturers’ Championship for Porsche.
It returned to Le Mans in 1983, starting in seventh position on the grid behind the two other Rothmans Porsche entries (956-005 and 956-008), but won the race in thrilling fashion (read the catalog description), leading a near-whitewash of the results (first eight places plus tenth).
$8,525,000 – 1959 Ferrari 250 GT Comp Alloy Berlinetta
Lot 56 Auction Link
This car was one of the legendary seven "interim" cars (in the transition from the 250 GT TdF Berlinetta to the 250 GT SWB Berlinetta) and has been the subject of a no-expense-spared restoration. Such a restoration included finding and purchasing the original motor, sending the chassis to Ferrari where Vaccari e Bosi (the original chassis builder) restored the chassis while Modena's Carrozzeria Autosport Bachelli & Villa did the body.
Last year was an eventful one for this car as it received Ferrari Classiche certification and appeared at both the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este (pictured above) and the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Earlier this year (2015), it took out the Platinum Award Class I Excellence Cup at the Palm Beach Cavallino Classic, an Excellence in Class at Mar-a-Lago and Best Ferrari at the Greenwich Concours d'Elegance.
The "interim" model is so coveted that they tend to be kept for long periods by those that have procured them, and those that have changed hands, have done so privately. This is the first of the seven to ever appear at auction.
$7,975,000 – 1950 Ferrari 275S/340 America Barchetta
Lot 217 Auction Link
One of nine Scuderia Ferrari (factory race team) Barchettas from the 1950s, this 12-cylinder Lampredi-engined car was one of only two Works Ferraris of its kind ever built. It was a factory Mille Miglia entrant in 1950, then subsequently competed under the Scuderia Marzotto banner in the 1951 and 1952 Mille Miglia, the 1951 Targa Florio and the sports car race at the 1952 Monaco Grand Prix.
It was raced by such luminaries as twice-F1 champion Alberto Ascari, Giovanni Bracco, and Gianni Marzotto. The car was shown at the 1950 Salon de l'Automobile in Paris by Ferrari and the auction description tells its full history, including how it came to be owned by a 14-year-old automotive enthusiast who translated his love for vintage cars into a thriving restoration business. It's a great story, and culminated in that same boy, a now much older Peter Markowski, driving the car onto the auction podium and saying farewell to his old friend (pictured).
$8,500,000 – 1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider
Lot 118 Auction Link
Sold new in 1959 to Prince Alvise Hercolani of Bologna, this car (1307GT) was one of 50 LWB California Spiders built by Ferrari. After six months of ownership, Hercolani sold the car to German F1 driver Wolfgang Seidel, and the ownership lineage is fully recorded to 1999 when the car underwent a complete resoration at Carrozzeria Autosport, Bacchelli & Villa in Italy.
In 2004, the car was stripped to its bare metal and refinished in dark blue with silver hardtop, the same colors it sported during Seidel’s ownership. The car was shown at the Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance in 2005 and the 2008 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance before another $115,000 was invested to take it to Ferrari Club of America Platinum award-winning standards.
Ferrari specialist Greg Jones was commissioned for a complete motor and suspension rebuild, and the entire car was detailed to concours standards before being shown at the Cavallino Classic in 2011. At this time, the car was certified by Ferrari Classiche and confirmed to be matching numbers throughout.
$6,050,000 – The Pope's Ferrari Enzo
Lot 103 Auction Link
Official Estimate: Between $4,000,000 and $6,000,000
Another from the Pinnacle Portfolio, this 2005 Ferrari Enzo was the 400th and final Enzo built, and was gifted to His Holiness Pope John Paul II by Ferrari. The 10 year-old car has been driven just 179 kilometers from new and is as desirable a specimen of the breed as it's possible to get. It is however, the Papal provenance and blessing of the car which was the X-factor in this sale.
The blessing of a Pope almost always causes people to pay inflated figures, as we saw when an otherwise standard 2013 Harley-Davidson Dyna Super Glide with a street value of around $12,000 sold for € 241,500 ($330,938) at Bonhams’ Les Grandes Marques du Monde sale in Paris last year. We predicted that the car was "Odds on to set a new world price record for the model", and it did just that, tripling the previous record for an Enzo.
$5,400,000 – 1960 Porsche RS60
Lot 143 Auction Link
Long after Sir Stirling Moss retired, he purchased a very similar car to this because it was one of his most beloved racing cars. Sir Stirling describes the Porsche RS60/61 series as having been "just super cars – beautifully balanced and simply tailor-made for such races as the mighty Targa Florio around 440 miles of Sicilian mountain roads."
This is one of the cars he raced that gave him such fond memories. It's the type of car which rewards good driving. Sir Stirling's RS61 sold at Goodwood recently for £1,905,500 (US$2,998,329). Considering that the other three works RS60s are in the Porsche Museum, and the Porsche collections of Miles Collier and Dr. Julio Palmaz, there was little doubt this RS60 four-cam Spyder (718-044) would sell at a premium and it did so, setting a new record for the model.
$5,087,500 – 1957 Ferrari 410 Superamerica Series II Coupe
Lot 135 Auction Link
Among Ferrari’s most exclusive coachbuilt V-12 models, the 410 Superamerica is powered by a slightly detuned version of the engine which won Le Mans and the Carrera Panamericana in 1954, the year before the model's introduction. Across all three series of the model, only 35 were built, and they cost around twice as much as a Mercedes-Benz Gullwing when new – around $16,000.
Remarkable cars often have an equally remarkable provenance and this car was purchased new by the Shah (Reza Pahlavi) of Iran in 1957, passing to his wife, Princess Soraya, following their divorce in 1958.
Other Superamerica owners included Emperor Bao-Dai of Vietnam, Renato Bialetti of the Bialetti Italian kitchenware conglomerate, Fred Lip of the famous LIP clock and watch company, Pietro Barilla of the Italian bread and pasta company of the same name, and Count Somsky of Switzerland. The car was sold with an extensive file of Concours honors, a complete history, and the knowledge it was being auctioned to benefit charity.
$4,015,000 – 1931 Bentley 4½-Litre Supercharged 2-Seat Sports
Lot 342 Auction Link
One of the 50 original supercharged "Blower" Bentleys and hence as priceless as the diamonds that made Bentley financier and chairman Woolf Barnato’s fortune. They seldom ever change hands, and when they do, it is often quietly among enthusiasts. The opportunity to purchase one at public auction is rare indeed, and the purchaser bought well, some $500,000 below the estimate of between $4,500,000 and $5,500,000.
$3,960,000 – 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB/6C Alloy by Scaglietti
Lot 309 Auction Link
One of just nine long-nose, torque-tube, alloy-bodied examples fitted with six Weber carburetors, complete history with just four Californian owners from new, matching numbers, original books, tools, and submitted for Ferrari Classiche certification. RM-Sotheby's estimate of between $3,600,000 and $4,200,000 proved to be clinically accurate.
$3,877,500 – 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4
Lot 29 Auction Link
Referred to in the official Gooding & Co description as a "virtual time-warp 275 GTB/4," this car is believed to retain the majority of its factory-original paint finish. The drivetrain, interior, mufflers, and even the tires are also thought to be original, with the undercarriage replete with original plating and finishes, the original brake hoses, stencils, decals, hardware, and factory markings.
Carefully preserved in every respect with a string of top level concours honors, perfect books and factory-original tool roll, it is one of the most original 275s in existence. The final price fell just below the estimated range of between $4,000,000 and $6,000,000.
$3,630,000 – 1934 Packard Twelve 1108 Sport Sedan
Lot 123 Auction Link
One of only three known Dietrich Individual Custom Sports Sedans, a distinguished provenance and an award-winning restoration make this a particularly desirable car. Estimated to sell for between $2,000,000 and $3,000,000, this Dietrich coachbuilt is considered by many as one of the finest of all American classics. Accordingly, it ran over the estimate.
$3,300,000 – 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4
Lot 116 Auction Link
$3,300,000 – 1994 Ferrari F40 LM
Lot 116 Auction Link
Radically updated over the road going F40, being both lighter and much more powerful, this car was one of just 19 produced. It is also one of just two with pushrod/rocker arm suspension, and the only example in private ownership. Estimated to sell for between $2,000,000 and $2,500,000, the F40 came in well above estimate
$3,025,000 – 1965 Ferrari 500 Superfast
Lot 20 Auction Link
Unveiled at the 1964 Geneva Auto Salon, the 500 Superfast was the last in a series of ultra-exclusive Ferrari road cars, built in limited numbers (36 only) for the world’s elite. Owners of the 170 mph 500 Superfast included Shah Reza Pahlevi of Iran, Barbara Hutton, and Peter Sellers.
This car was purchased new by Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan, the first of only six owners in the car's 50 year history, which included 17 years in the Mas du Clos Collection. The current owner commissioned an exhaustive two-year restoration by Wayne Obry’s Motion Products and the voluminous supporting documentation that comes with the car includes invoices totaling $1,000,000 in creating a Platinum-Award-Winner.
The total package is near perfect and includes Ferrari Classiche certification, all the original books, tools, and luggage. The gorgeous Superfast sold in the lower range of Gooding & Co's estimate of between $3,00,000 and $3,400,000.
$2,750,000 – 1972 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Spider
Lot 120 Auction Link
With the highest estimate of six Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytonas up for grabs at Monterey this year, this car was the only Spider among them, and hence estimated at three times the Berlinetta's price – one of the reasons so many people have cut the top off their 365s over the years – at between $3,000,000 and $3,500,000.
There were only 121 genuine Daytona Spiders made, and it was in an identical car to this that Raul Julia ripped off the rear view mirror and delivered one of cinema's most memorable lines in The Gumball Rally (1976): “And now, my friend, the first rule of Italian driving ... what’s behind me is not important.”
Numerous high profile celluloid appearances and awards boosted the legend of the 365, but for genuine bad boy street cred, the pinnacle was the car's win in the underground across-America street race known as the Cannonball Baker Sea-To-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash with F1 driver Dan Gurney and journalist Brock Yates. The car covered the NY-LA distance of 2,876 miles (4,628 km) in 35 hours 54 minutes for an 80.1 mph (129 km/h) average. Gurney's famously quipped, "we never once exceeded 175 miles per hour."
Correct in every way (matching numbers, books, tools), this 365 GTB/4 Daytona Spider was US-delivered and factory-fitted with air conditioning and Borrani wire wheels. The world record price for a 365 Daytona Spider at auction was set by RM in Scottsdale earlier this year at $3,300,000 then equalled by the newly-named RM-Sotheby's at Amelia Island two months later. As the hammer fell, this car was not quite on world record pace, falling below the $2,970,000 of the previous record holder (GTB, not a GTB/4) set at Pebble Beach by Gooding & Co in 2013.
$2,640,000 – 1971 Ferrari 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spider
Lot 59 Auction Link
The sixteenth of just 25 European specification 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spiders built, the final hammer price plus commission equalled the record for a GTS/4 Daytona of $2,640,000 set by Bonhams at Quail Lodge (Monterey) last year.
$2,530,000 – 1969 Lamborghini Miura P400 S
Lot S66 Auction Link
Though only estimated at between $1,500,000 and $1,750,000, this Miura S became the highest priced car of Mecum's entire 600+ vehicle, three-day auction and surprised everyone by besting the price of the Pinnacle Portfolio Miura and snatching a world record for the Miura.
The car's strength is it's originality with it's original paint and interior. The car has covered less than 49,000 kilometers from new (31,000 miles).
The previous record price for a Miura at auction was $2,310,000 set at Amelia Island in March (2015) by a 1971 Lamborghini Miura SV, one of only two Miura's that had bested the $2 million barrier prior to Monterey, 2015, the other being a 1971 SV which sold for $2,090,000 in Monterey last year.
$2,475,000 – 1970 Plymouth Hemi Cuda Convertible
Lot F69 Auction Link
Many claim the Cuda Hemi Convertible was the first American muscle car to broach $1,000,000 at auction back in 2002, though we cannot verify this claim (please use the comments section if you can assist).
While the 2002 claim might be another internet-generated-myth based on a speculative headline, there's no doubt the limited edition droptop cuda is one of the most collectible of the American muscle cars, with only 14 produced in 1970 and 11 in 1971 before production ceased of the rare 426 cubic inch, 425 horsepower model.
The Cuda Hemi Convertible car has definitely been a $2 million dollar car for almost a decade, first broaching that barrier at Scottsdale in January, 2006 when Barrett-Jackson sold a 1970 model for $2,160,000. RM beat the 2006 model auction record at Scottsdale the following year (2007) when it sold a 1971 model for $2,420,000, creating a record that stood for seven years.
In Seattle last year (2014), a 1971 Plymouth Hemi Cuda convertible sold for $3.5 million, creating yet another auction record for the model which is generally regarded as the crown jewel of American muscle cars. The reality TV drama which played out on NBCSN is worth watching as the car crept past $3 million and edged towards its reserve.
This car didn't quite make the $3 million mark, but it did become the second highest priced Cuda Hemi Convertible ever sold at auction. It's also hard to see the price going down for this model as there are far more maturing baby boomers with cash to splash and a hankering for procuring a car they once dreamed about owning, than genuine cars still out there. It's a sign of the times and the power of American muscle power culture that the Cuda Hemi Convertible should be more valuable than the dream car of the rest of the world from the same era (see directly above and below).
$2,475,000 – 1971 Lamborghini Miura P400 SV by Bertone
Lot 105 Auction Link
$2,420,000 – 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO
Lot 124 Auction Link
$2,365,000 – 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO
Lot 32 Auction Link
$2,310,000 – 1966 Ferrari Dino 206 SP
Lot 34 Auction Link
One of just 18 built, the Dino 206 S Spider was the first car to wear a Dino badge on the bonnet instead of the traditional Ferrari badge. This car has an unbroken and undisputed provenance from new, and as with all of the 18 originals, the ownership includes a succession of noted collectors. Painstakingly examined and authenticated by Marcel Massini. Only three of the 18 cars have ever gone to auction, with sales of €2,520,000 (US$3,255,604) at Monaco in May, 2012, € 2,072,000 ($2,851,402) at Monaco in May, 2014, and €2,420,000 ($3,269,541) at Maranello in May, 2007. This one surprisingly went for less than all of them at just $2.31 million. Go figure!
$2,310,000 – 2012 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport "300"
Lot 112 Auction Link
They don't come much more exclusive than this. It's number #300 of the 300 Veyron coupes built, and one of just eight US-specification Veyron 16.4 Super Sports built. It produces 1,200 horsepower and has a top speed of 258 mph, and was displayed by Bugatti at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show. With only 308 miles from new on the odometer, it was sold with a unique pre-owned warranty from Bugatti, including two years of service and a set of complementary tires, fetching $2.31 million.
$2,200,000 – 1951 Ferrari 212 Inter Cabriolet
Lot 65 Auction Link
The 212 achieved many racing successes but more importantly it put some 110 individual chassis in the hands of clients. The 212 was bodied in a bewildering array of styles from lightweight spyders, coupés and berlinettas to stylish and luxurious cabriolets. Carrozzeria Alfredo Vignale contributed most of the 212's coachwork but the 212 also provided the basis for the first Ferrari by Pinin Farina and important designs by both Touring and Ghia. This Vignale-bodied car was owned for 39 years by noted collector Charles G. Renaud, and comes with Ferrari Classiche certification and a Marcel Massini report. The car underwent a two-year restoration which was completed in 2014 in time for it to show at Pebble Beach where it was awarded second-in-class (pictured). It returned to Monterey this year to sell for $2.2 million.
$2,145,000 – 1976 Porsche 930 Turbo Carrera
Lot S71 Auction Link
We've written a lot about Steve McQueen in the collectibles area, as he genuinely seems to have been one of the very few people who have lived, who have had the "midas touch." Since that article was written, one of his motorcycles became the most expensive ever to sell at auction. More than a dozen ex-McQueen bikes are in the top 100 most expensive, and his cars are also highly valued and rare and have a high population in the most expensive cars ever sold and the most expensive movie cars ever sold. It's hence not surprising that his 1976 Porsche 930 Turbo Carrera, the last of the special-order McQueen cars, should sell for ten times it's book value.
$2,090,000 – 1998 Ferrari 333 SP
Lot 140 Auction Link
A successful two season international racing history, including fourth place at the 1999 24 Hours of Daytona. Presented in its original Auto Sport Racing Team livery with a full history by Ferrari Historian Marcel Massini.
$2,090,000 – 2005 Maserati MC12
Lot 117 Auction Link
$2,062,000 – 1952 Jaguar XK120 Supersonic by Ghia
Lot 223 Auction Link
$1,980,000 – 1995 Ferrari F50
Lot 106 Auction Link
$1,980,000 – 2015 McLaren P1
Lot 245 Auction Link