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 |  May 11 2010, 9:51 AM

BMW 328 MM

RM Auctions’ inaugural Sporting Classics of Monaco, held over the Weekend of May 1-2, proved a resounding success. Held at the Grimaldi Forum, within the confines of the tiny principality, the auction drew €33,235,917 ($45,101,139) in total sales, with 88 of the 105 historical vehicles finding new owners (an 86 percent sell-through rate). Five of those cars fetched prices of over €2,000,000 each.

The top selling automobile of the auction, was a super rare 1962 Ferrari 400 Superamerica short wheelbase cabriolet with bodywork by Pininfarina, which achieved a new record for a Superamerica – selling for €2,800,000 ($3,799,600), significantly more than it’s original sale estimate of €2,450,000.

Additional sales that surpassed the two million euro mark included a highly desirable 1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Gran Turismo, selling for €2,632,000 ($3,571,624); a rare 1960 Maserati Tipo 61 ‘Birdcage’, that set a new world record for a Birdcage, by selling at €2,464,000 ($3,343,648); plus the ex-Harrah 1957 Ferrari 250 GT LWB Tour de France, that sold for €2,352,000 ($3,191,664) and a stunning 1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder, that brought in €2,072,000 ($2,811,704).

Other notable auction results included a stunning 1938 Delahaye 135 MS Competition Cabriolet that sold for €1,792,000 ($2,431,744); plus a significant 1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II “Special Town Car” by Brewster, the only one of it’s kind to retain its original coachwork. The Rolls sold for  €1,456,000 ($1,975,792). Further high profile sales included a rare alloy-bodied 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB/6C Berlinetta, that went for €784,000 ($1,063,888); a fully-restored 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 Berlinetta, that gaveled for €767,200 ($1,041,090); plus a matching-numbers 1930 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Zagato Spider, that fetched an impressive €879,200 ($1,193,074) and a genuine 1963 Shelby 289 Cobra Roadster Le Mans racer, that brought in €744,800 ($1,010,694).

The sale’s cover car, the 1937 BMW 328 MM ‘Buegelfalte’ (above), considered to be one of the world’s most significant pre-war sports race cars, exchanged hands within less than 24 hours of the sale’s conclusion for a confidential sum and was therefore not included in the final sale results. However, the Buegelfalte had reached a high bid of €4,300,000 ($5,835,100)  prior to its final sale and, added to the final auction results, it helped result in the most successful collector auction in history.

Besides the record sales for RM, there were some interesting observations at Sporting Classics. For example, many top bids were registered by telephone from 33 different countries and first time bidders represented 28 percent of the total number of registered entries. A sign of things to come? Perhaps. But such a high proportion of new buyers, along with the high sales tallies, indicates that the interest in blue chip classic and collectible cars remains healthy, even in the midst of slow economic growth.

[Source: RM Auctions]