Arizona Auction Week 2018: Fair Skies, Fabulous Crowds: Fab$$$
Record warm weather and auction records helped make Arizona Automobile Week a winner, start to finish.
At the week’s granddaddy event at WestWorld of Scottsdale, the 47th Scottsdale Barrett-Jackson, The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions®, totaled more than $116.7 million in sales, a 99.1-percent sell-through and six individual auction records including a 1958 Chevrolet Corvette Custom Convertible (Lot #1348) which brought $440,000.
Making a second year appearance at Salt River Fields, Russo and Steele sold 457 cars while hosting 50,000 car fans. Top car was a 1967 Chevrolet Cheetah (Consignment #2032), one of only ten original “Cobra Killers” known in the United States, which sold for $660,000.
7th-annual Bonhams Scottsdale Auction at the Westin-Kierland Resort & Spa, generated $25.2 million with a 87-percent sell-through, led by a 1958 Porsche 550A Spyder –– the Le Mans works entrant that clinched second in class and fifth overall as well as first in class at Nürburgring –– claimed by an American collector for $5,170,000, a world auction model record.
Gooding & Company achieved $49.2 million at its 11th annual Scottsdale Fashion Square auction, setting 20 world-auction benchmarks, with 12 cars exceeding $1 million, led by a splendid 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale (Lot #134), once owned by legendary designer, Pinin Farina, for $8,085,000.
A matching-numbers 1966 Shelby 427 Cobra Semi-Competition, CSX 3040, significantly outran its pre-sale estimate to bring $2,947,500 at RM Sotheby’s 19th annual Arizona sale in Phoenix, which tallied $36.5 million –– an 88-percent sell-through-at the landmark Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa.
In its first event under new Arizona-based ownership at the Fort McDowell Casino, just outside of Fountain Hills, the four-day Auction-Thon at Silver Auctions AZ posted $3,429,000 in sales, topped by a 2003 BMW Z8 Roadster, $128,520 including the 8-percent buyer’s premium.
And, the second annual AZ Jet Center event, hosted by Aero Jet Services at the Scottsdale Airpark, featured jets on the ground and jets taking off and landing, wines, art, premium spirits and beautiful cars such as a 2017 Ford GT.
“Scottsdale is so fortunate to host high-caliber auto auctions and events, which generate millions in economic impact for our community,” says Rachel Sacco, CEO of Experience Scottsdale. “Plus, the visitors who came to Scottsdale for this year’s auctions filled our hotels and resorts and enjoyed our restaurants, golf courses and attractions.”
Barrett-Jackson: A President Visits and Charity is Always at Home
Among the more than 325,000 guests attending this year’s Scottsdale Barrett-Jackson were former President George W. Bush, car aficionados and entertainers Jay Leno and Tim Allen, Olympic Gold medalist extraordinaire, Michael Phelps, Valley rocker, car and golf lover, Alice Cooper, and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey.
Nearly all 1,721 vehicles sold at No Reserve as well as 1,100-plus automobilia items, which totaled $3.7-plus million. In addition, the auction helped raise $6.21 million with the sale of charity vehicles, led by a current-generation 2017 Ford GT (#3010) that brought in $2.55 million, benefitting the Autism Society of North Carolina’s IGNITE program, donated by Valley businessman, entrepreneur and car collector Ron Pratte, who added $50,000 as part of the total.
“We’re so thankful for the entire collector car community and everyone who joined together to create so many signature Barrett-Jackson moments on the block this week,” says Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Scottsdale-based Barrett-Jackson, which also produces annual auctions in Palm Beach, Florida; at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut; and Las Vegas, Nevada. “Many records were set, as No Reserve vehicles continue to attract strong bidding, and our automobilia sales were the most impressive yet.”
Other auction world records posted were a 1958 Chevrolet 3100 Custom Pickup (#1358), $198,000; 1961 Ford F-100 Custom Pickup (#1308.1), $165,000; 1951 Cadillac Custom Coupe (#1422), $150,700; 2018 Dodge Demon (#1317), $159,500; and a 1951 Chevrolet Styleline Deluxe Convertible (#1351), $126,500.
“Collectors come to Barrett-Jackson because we craft an incredible docket filled with vehicles for every buyer level and interest,” says Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson. “This year, prime examples of high-profile ‘60s muscle cars continued to be strong, while customs, hot rods, trucks and SUVs were particularly popular, several setting world records.”
The top ten sellers: 2015 Porsche 918 Spyder (#1415), $1,430,000; 1952 Ferrari 212 Europa (#1378), $1,100,000; 1965 Chevrolet Corvette Cutaway Coupe (#1413), $1,100,000; 1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 (#1409), $770,000; 1966 Shelby GT350 Prototype #001 (#1406), $605,000; 2015 MTI Racing Boat (#1426), $548,900; 2006 Ford GT Heritage Edition (#1414), $495,000; 1968 Chevrolet Corvette L88 (#1418), $495,000; the 1958 Chevrolet Corvette Custom Convertible (#1348), $440,000; and a 1970 Pontiac GTO Judge Ram Air IV Convertible (#1412), $440,000.
A full-size transportation-themed carousel (#9499), $557,750, led the automobilia auction. Other top items were a circa-1939 Husky Gasoline porcelain service station sign (#8901), $149,500; 1950s Esso Aviation porcelain with neon restored airport hangar sign (#9394), $63,250; 1950s Donald Duck neon porcelain parking lot entrance sign from Disneyland (#9492), $48,300; and a 1950s Dog-N-Suds Drive-In single-sided neon porcelain sign (#9498.2), $41,400.
President Bush’s Military Service Initiative was the 100-percent beneficiary of the sale of a 2018 Corvette Carbon 65 Edition (#3007), $1.4 million. Other charity cars included a 2019 Corvette ZR1 (#3009), $925,000, for the Building for America’s Bravest through the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation.
Carolyn and Craig Jackson’s Corvette 35th Anniversary brought in $350,000 (#3008) for Barrett-Jackson’s yearlong charity initiative, Driven Hearts, benefitting the American Heart Association. Also generating $350,000 was a 2015 Pioneer Cedar One Custom Roadster (#3005), to assist the National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation, The Royal Canadian Legion and Our Nation’s Heroes Foundation.
And, film star Chad McQueen, son of Hollywood actor and motorcycle, car and plane enthusiast, Steve McQueen, helped onstage with the sale of the VIN 001 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt (#3006), $300,000, with 100 percent of the hammer price benefiting Boys Republic, a private, nonprofit, nonsectarian school and treatment community for troubled youngsters based in Chino Hills, California. Ford and the McQueen estate donated the limited-edition Mustang.
“Charitable giving has been a pillar of Barrett-Jackson going all the way back to 1966 with the first car show for charity, before we founded the auction company in 1971, and reaching nearly $102 million through the years is an incredible milestone,” Jackson says. “Our company was founded on the principle of charitable donations by my father Russ Jackson and his partner, Tom Barrett, and I’m grateful to be able to carry on that banner in their honor.”
Russo and Steele American Muscle, and Bonhams European Sports Cars
At Russo and Steele, the other two leading cars were a 1965 Shelby GT350 #47 Fastback (#: 2205), one of the 562 built in the first year of production, and signed by Carroll Shelby, $341,000; and a 1967 Chevrolet Corvette 427/435 Roadster (#2058), #1 of the five red-on-red 435-horse roadsters and a 99 point Bloomington Gold award winner, $302,500.
“Once again, Scottsdale proves to be the preeminent market setting event of the year,” says Drew Alcazar, founder and CEO of Scottsdale-based Russo and Steele Automobile Auctions. “This year’s results showed continued strength and stability, giving the hobby a solid foundation upon which to spring into the next quarter.
He continues: “As has been the trend since 2015, genuinely collectable cars with strong provenance and near 100 point restorations, with ‘no stories’ continue to excel, many past previous ‘high water’ marks. Russo and Steele is devoted to this robust market sector, servicing our clients seeking to add to their collections from $50,000 to $1 million.”
At Bonhams, European sporting cars led, with Porsche, Ferrari, Mercedes and Bentley dominating. A 1972 Ferrari 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spider brought $2,640,000, and a 1991 Ferrari F40 Coupe made $1,512,500. The first 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster imported into the United States achieved $1,512,500, and a 1930 Bentley Speed Six Le Mans Replica Tourer outproduced its pre-sale estimate by more than 50 percent at $1,457,500.
Two of Carroll Shelby’s personal cars, a 1966 Ford Shelby GT 350H Fastback and a 2006 Ford GT, sold for $253,000 and $489,500, respectively –– exceeding all estimates. And, a 1982 Lancia Rally 037 Stradale also exceeded its estimate, bringing $451,000.
“Our sale really demonstrated the strength of the collector car market across all eras of motoring,” says Rupert Banner, Group Motoring director, who, along with Jamie Knight, Group Motoring chairman, was the auctioneer. “We had lots of global interest and many new, first-time buyers, which is a very positive indication of the growth and future of the hobby.”
A Speciale Gooding, a Tucker at RM Sotheby’s and Silver, American Classics
Of the 129 lots offered, 110 cars were sold at Gooding & Company, an 85-percent sell-through with an average price of $447,415 per car sold.
In addition to the Pinin Farina-owned Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale, other world auction records were a 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Series I (#34), $4,455,000; 1963 Iso Grifo A3/L Prototype (#28), $1,760,000; 2012 Lexus LFA Nürburgring (Lot 124), $825,000, a world-record for the Lexus marque; and a 1951 Alfa Romeo 1900C Sprint (#136) $616,000.
Other highlights were the sale of a 1931 Bugatti Type 55 Roadster (#122), $4,070,000; a 1967 Ferrari 330 GTS (#138), returning to original owner’s family, $2,530,000; a 2014 Pagani Huayra (#47), $2,090,000; 2015 McLaren P1 (#26), $1,732,000; and a 1953 Ferrari 212 Europa Coupe (#24), $1,067,000.
And four classic Mercedes-Benz 300 SLs brought high dollars: a 1956 Gullwing (#16), $1,320,000; 1954 Gullwing (#151), $1,155,000; 1960 Roadster (#22), $1,100,000; and a 1957 Roadster (#114), $1,083,500.
“What a thrill to sell such a sensational group of cars, especially the most valuable car of the week,” says David Gooding, president and founder of Santa Monica, California-based Gooding & Company, who led the auction with the assistance of Auctioneer Charlie Ross. “Our team worked hard to curate such a fantastic group of historic, high-quality cars and the record-breaking results speak for themselves.”
RM Sotheby’s diverse roster of blue-chip collector cars, featured two single-owner groups, highlighted by A Century of Sports Cars: 11 automobiles focused on great Italian sports and GT cars and offered without reserve. Of this group, a 1964 Ferrari 250 GT/L Berlinetta Lusso brought $1,682,500; a 1960 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet Series II, $1,407,500; and an award-winning 1955 Alfa Romeo 1900C SS Speciale by Boano, $1,270,000.
The second group of pre- and post-war American classics, also offered without reserve, was led by a 1948 Tucker 48, chassis no. 1029, the personal car of visionary builder Preston Tucker until 1955, which significantly exceeded its estimate, selling at $1,792,500. A 1935 Auburn Eight Supercharged Speedster, with original chassis, engine, and body, also surpassed expectations at $769,500.
At Silver Auctions AZ, a total of 357 vehicles crossed the auction block, with 198 of those sold, a strong 55.5-percent sell-through. The other top three cars were a 1959 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible Resto-Mod, $79,920, and a 1957 Ford Thunderbird E-Code Convertible, $75,600.
“We were pleasantly surprised by the results we achieved during our January sale,” says Andy Stone, co-host for Silver Auctions AZ, “and with the interest shown from both consignors and bidders for our up-coming March 30 and 31 sale, it is sure to be another winner.”
Among other cars shown at the Jet Center Event were a 1952 Lancia b52 pf200, a 2016 Ariel Atom 3s, a 1956 Ferrari 500 Testa Rossa, a 2012 Lamborghini Avendator and a 1966 Shelby 427 Cobra, the last gaining a seat from Bob Bondurant, who drove them competitively in the day. The World Champion driver, Paradise Valley resident and founder of the Bondurant Racing School in Chandler, chatted with event guests, accompanied by wife Pat.
“We had a flight attendant escorting guests onto the G4 aircraft against the sun setting on the McDowell Mountains, the firing up of a drag racer, nitro added, with the audience wearing earplugs, and we raised money for respected charities,” says Scott Ingebretson, marketing director for Jet Center Events, based in Edmonds, Washington.
“One person told us, ‘It’s the best hangar event we have attended.’ For us, there is no higher compliment.”