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This weekends Concours d’Elegance in Monterey California raised quite a few eyebrows. Not only did we catch the debut of stunning cars like the BMW M4 concept and the Cadillac Elmiraj concept, classic collectors were given the chance to lay down cash on some of the most exotic cars in the world.
Some of us might remember the beginning and end of the Pink Panther Show where our favorite animated feline exits and enters into a dramatic, low slung custom car. That machine, appropriately named the Panthermobile, was originally built by Hollywood custom car legend Jay Ohrberg in 1969 for the show, which aired on NBC in the US from then until 1976.
Now, some 35 years after the show ended, the car scheduled to make an appearance at the Chelsea Auto Legends Show, which takes place next month in London, UK. At the same time, it’ll also be offered for auction online, via Robson Kay.
The Panthermobile is in unrestored, original condition and need of some work (it currently doesn’t run); nevertheless when it was first offered up for auction in 2007 via COYS, a bidder paid £88,000 ($55,000) for the thing.
How much it’ll fetch this time around is anyone’s guess but it’ll be interesting to see the bidding response this one-of-a-kind creation generates. The auction runs from September 4th (Auto Legends opening day) to October 14th.
As part of this most recent weekend’s festivities at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, the annual Bonhams’ Classic Car Auction generated £7.2 million ($11.6 million) worth of sales, as collectors flocked to the tasty offerings up for grabs.
Star attractions at the Bonham’s event this time out, included a 1967 Lamborghini 400GT (similar to the car above) and originally owned by ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney, which went for £122, 500 ($196,00), plus an ultra rare Bertone bodied 1954 Aston Martin DB2/4 drophead, which sold for £606,500 ($970,400) – the most of any vehicle during the auction.Said Aston was once owned by racing driver Innes Ireland and is believed to be one of just two such examples ever built.
Another strong seller was a 1925 Bugatti Type 35, which went under the gavel for a respectable £430,500 ($688,800) ; it sold to an over-the-phone buyer.
In total, there were 99 cars that crossed the auction block, with 85 percent of them finding buyers. The 2011 auction was judged an outstanding success, generating more than twice as much money as last year and setting a new record at Goodwood, despite a similar car count (for the record, Bonham’s at Goodwood in 2010 saw 93 cars cross the block and £3.6 million ($5.76 million) generated in sales).
Mecum Auctions has announced that it will be offering a very unique Corvette collection for sale during next weekend’s Bloomington Gold event.
The auction, scheduled to take place at the Pheasant Run Resort on East Main Street in St. Charles, IL on June 24-25, will see each car in the collection, which comprises a black Corvette from every year from 1954 to 1969, offered at no reserve.
Among the cars up for grabs are some very desirable models, ranging from early fuel-injected, solid axle machines to a split-window 1963 mid-year Sting Ray and even coupes and convertibles of the same model year, plus a fist full of 1965-69 396/427 big-block cars (including the 1966 Big Tank coupe shown above). Without question, this corral of Corvettes is expected to be the highlight of this year’s auction.
For more information on these and other Corvettes due to go under the gavel at Mecum’s Bloomington Gold auction, click on the link below:
[Source: Mecum Auctions]
A very rare 1965 Ford GT40 prototype is being featured at RM Auctions and is to be sold May 21st. The GT40 is just one of five roadsters that were built.
This particular model, the GT/111, entered into the Targa Florio rally where it had numerous engine problems. Its 4.7-liter V8 was only firing on seven cylinders and it had the misfortune of crashing on its last lap. After its debut, the protoptype was transported back to England where it was stripped down and forgotten. Eventually the car was restored and RM Auctions is expecting to fetch $3.6- $4.3 million at the auction!
It’s a little rough around the edges, but this Futurliner bus represents the essence of a bygone era, specifically GM’s Parade of Progress, which during the 1940s and ’50s traveled across the country demonstrating the latest in the General’s automotive technology to consumers.
GM originally built 12 of these buses, which were 33 feet long, 11 feet high and rode on double tires at all four corners. Styling mimicked period locomotives and was designed to capture the essence of speed and streamlining, which was perceived as cutting edge at the time.
Eight of the original 12 Futurliners are known to still exist today and this one is being offered for sale by Auctions America on behalf of noted GM Motorarama car collector Joe Bortz. The bus is likely to fetch between $450,000 and $650,000 when it crosses the block at the Auburn Auction Park during the May 12-14 weekend.
“These Futurliner buses represent the largest artifacts remaining from GM’s great Motorama era and hold a significant place in American automotive history,” said Bortz
[Source: Auctions America]
We’ve all heard about those so-called ‘Duesy in a barn,’ stories, but sometimes they actually do happen. Take the case of Bill Fair, a businessman and auctioneer from Lecompton, Kansas.
Fair had been asked by the Texas attorney general’s office to supervise the cleaning out of some storage units; imagine to his surprise when, amid all the junk found in one of them, he came across a 1966 Shelby G.T.350.
“It was just sitting there, in the middle of all the trash,” he said. It turned out that the car had been parked some 26 years ago and was in remarkable condition considering.
Once he notified the attorney’s office, they arranged to have the car shipped to an auction in San Antonio. According to Fair, they’ve already been receiving offers for the car, but still, plan to sell it under the gavel around $200,000.
Once raced by John Whitmore and Bob Bondurant in the 1965 Targa Florio; this Linden Green 1965 Ford GT40 roadster, one of just five ever built, was thought to have been lost forever.
In 2006, the car, chassis GT/111 re-surfaced once again and was restored the following year. Since then it has made various appearances at vintage racing events around the world, including the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Now it’s about to go under the hammer, being auctioned off at the prestigious Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, which takes place in Cernobbio, Italy on May 21. How much the car will fetch is anybody’s guess, though interested parties should make sure they have deep pockets – closed GT40s with pedigree regularly sell for more than $1.5 million, so you can bet this one will likely fetch considerably more.
Among Mustang and modern muscle car fans, the 2012 Boss 302 is one of the most highly anticipated cars of the year, however diehard enthusiasts are bemoaning the fact that you won’t be able to get one in perhaps the Mustang’s most signature color – Grabber Blue. OR can you?
Ford has decided to paint one of it’s hot new 444-horsepower 2012 Boss 302s in the famed hue, and auction the car at Barrett-Jackson’s Westworld event. The car features the same 5.0-liter V8 as other Boss 302s, but along with the unique paint it will sport some special features, including black accents on the roof, mirror housings and spoiler, plus a Grabber blue interior X-brace and embroidery on the seats.
All proceeds from the sale of the car (above it’s MSRP) will be donated to the Juvenile Diabetes Research foundation. Between them, Barrett-Jackson and Ford Motor Company have so far raised almost $2.5 million for the charity over the last four years.
GALLERY: Grabber Blue Boss 302 Mustang
[Source Edmunds Inside Line]
It’s that time of year again, where the big collector car auctions get revved up for some serious gavel action in Arizona. RM Auctions, which this year is offering a whole fistful of vintage and classic British machinery, is also offering this, the very first Dodge Charger ever built.
Launched as a concept in 1964, it was based on the existing full-size Polara two-door, but was designed as a showcase for Chrysler’s then new Hemi V8, the all-conquering 426. The ’64 Charger was converted into a two seater, sporting a cut down roof with original Batmobile type pods for the driver and passenger, plus a notable absence of chrome (including the bumpers), special side scoops and unique Halibrand wheels.
However, because of high demand for those new Hemi V8s, especially in NASCAR, when the Charger concept actually made its debut, it was powered by a standard 383 cubic inch big block Polara V8, rated at 305-hp. It toured the show circuit for a year and was then acquired by a prominent Dodge dealer who passed it onto his son, who made some alterations to the car.
In 1999 it was acquired by noted dream car collector Joe Bortz who had it restored at no expense. In fact Bortz went a step further and had one of the original, hand built Hemi engines installed, thus creating the car’s ‘should have been’ original configuration.
In 2007 the car was purchased by collector John M. O’Quinn and now, following his death, is up for auction, along with other items from the O’Quinn estate. According to RM, the car will likely sell for between $750,000 and $1 million when it goes under the hammer later this month.
[Source: RM Auctions]
CSX 1001, one of only 12 genuine 1965 Shelby Cobra S/C 427s and the only one to sport an aluminum engine, will be going up for auction at Russo and Steele’s Scottsdale event in January.
Built using an original AC body from Britain, it was completed for Carroll Shelby personally and along with the car, the winning bidder will receive original paperwork verifying ol’ Shel as the Cobra’s original owner.
In view of its pedigree, exotic engine and also the fact that it is one of just 12 Semi Competition Cobras built in 1965, it’s anybody’s guess to how much the car will sell for when it goes under the gavel. However, one thing’s for certain, interested parties should make sure they’ve got plenty of cash on hand when the time comes.
The very last Mercurys might be rolling off the assembly lines as this blog is posted, but the brand will likely have a long future yet, at least in classic car circles.
If marques like Edsel, Plymouth and Studebaker are anything to go by, then Mercurys will likely resonate with collectors and car enthusiasts long after the name becomes a distant memory amongst regular consumers. Mercury also has a number of cars produced in it’s 72 year existence that will likely attract more collector attention than most.
The 1940s ‘woodie’ wagons and convertibles are highly prized among collectors, while the 1949-51 ‘Bathtub’ Mercurys have long been a favorite with custom car fans. Cars like the Cyclone, Cougar (shown) and Marauder also rank among the best of the muscle car era.
And prices seem to reflect a growing demand for Mercurys on the auction circuit. Not too long ago, a 1969 Cougar (a luxury XR7, not a performance oriented Eliminator), went under the gavel for almost $100,000 at one of Mecum’s Auctions, while RM sold a 1946 Mercury Sportsman Woodie for a staggering $368,000.
But there are those that believe it will be tough for Mercury to perhaps resonate with tomorrow’s collectors who might have little idea of the brand’s storied history. However, Garry Bennett, V-P of Consignment for Barrett-Jackson, believes that the brand will follow in the manner of some other ‘orphan’ makes, with certain cars especially, attracting a following. Not too long ago he said, “the fact that they’re going to discontinue [Mercury], it’s going to create new awareness.”
Bob McDorman has been a Chevrolet dealer for more than four decades, building his franchise into one of the most prominent in the United States.
Not only is that impressive in itself, but so was the collection of cars he amassed, some 150 prime machines, including a fistful of Corvettes (Bill and Florence Knudsen’s one-off Sting Rays, plus another experimental ’64 owned by Bill Mitchell, among other things).
However, on November 6th, through Mecum Auctions, McDorman elected to off-load his collection, during a one-day auction that took place on the site of his dealership. Eager bidders from around the country and abroad, flocked to the event and at one point some 1,100 viewers tuned in to watch it on a live webcast. By the time the gavel fell for the last time, the collection had generated $7 million in total sales. Hit the jump for a list of the top 10 cars that were auctioned off and the amount for which each was sold (naturally the list includes the unique Knudsen and Mitchell Sting Rays).
Back during the first muscle car collection boom in the 1980s, the two big collections everybody knew about were Otis Chandler’s in the West and Milton Robson’s in the East.
Today, although many other high profile collections have spawned, fueled by a second boom during the last decade, Robson’s group of rare and interesting cars has remained one of the most notable – a diverse stable of prime automobiles that he amassed over more than 25 years.
Now, 55 cars in the collection are to be sold at auction, RM putting together a single vendor sale in Gainsville, GA on November 13. Among the cars up for grabs, include a whole fistful of prime Detroit muscle – notably a Starlight Black 1969 Ram Air IV Pontiac GTO Judge Convertible; a 1969 Chevy Camaro Yenko S/C and a 1969 ZL-1 Camaro (shown). The particular ZL-1 illustrated above is number 63 out of 69 built and features the ultra rare aluminum 427 big-block V-8 and four-speed manual gearbox – estimates place it’s value at between $500,000 and $750,000.
Other highlights of the auction include a 1969 Pontiac Firebird 400 convertible; 1970 Chevy Chevelle SS454 LS6 convertible, 1970 Ford Ranchero GT; 1970 Buick 455 GS and some rare full-size early muscle machines, including a lightweight 1962 Bel Air 409 as well as a selection of highly desirable 1950s cars like a 1957 DeSoto Adventurer convertible and a one-of-a-kind, supercharged 1953 Cadillac Eldorado.
For more information on this once in a life time auction event, click on the link below:
[Source: RM Auctions]
Barrett-Jackson’s recent Las Vegas auction took on near reality soap opera proportions when a high profile bid went south. The 2008 Bugatti Veyron shown above, arguably the most high profile car to cross the block, drummed up more than $700,000 in bids, but when the gavel came down, the ‘winning bidder’ backed out of the sale, leaving B-J on the hook for the $700,000 price. As a result the buyer was stripped of his bidding credentials and promptly escorted off the property.
“First, he said he didn’t bid, then he said he was ‘trying to help,’” said Craig Jackson, Chairman and CEO of B-J. “The bottom line is, he said he wouldn’t buy it and we booted him.”
With the sale gone south and no apparent other bids, Jackson ended up buying the car himself, but didn’t seem too take aback by the idea, making plans to add the car to his own collection and taking it for a spin around Sin City.
As for the mystery buyer, according to auction insiders he was just a nut who wanted to get himself on TV. What a way to do it. Click on the link below for the video
It’s not even officially out yet, but at this year’s Barrett-Jackson auction in Las Vegas, an early 2011 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible went under the gavel for a healthy $207,000.
It joined a roster of high priced cars that rounded off the top five sellers at the auction; but what was interesting, is that apart from the first and second highest priced cars that sold – a 2008 Bugatti Veyron ($770,000) and 2009 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren ($412,500); the other three were General Motors products.
Besides the Camaro ragtop, a customized 2010 Camaro coupe sold for a whopping $350,000 and a 1981 Corvette went for $150,000. Wow! Who would have thought that we’d see the day when a 1981 Corvette (the year that a de-bored 305 V8 was available), would sell for six figures. Mind you, stranger things have happened.
Classic cars are one thing, but there’s also a healthy interest in vintage commercial and military vehicles. Those drawn to the latter will have a unique opportunity on September 17 and 18 when the Leake Auction Company puts some up for sale during it’s annual event at the Houston Reliant Center. The vehicles, all drawn from a private collection, include a 1928 Chevrolet Fire pumper (shown) a Ford TT Texaco Fuel delivery truck; a Diamond T Shell tanker truck and a Delta Force military attack vehicle.
However, for those whose tastes lean toward something smaller, there will be plenty of classic autos crossing the block, including a 1965 Mustang 2+2′ a 1969 Shelby GT500; a 1960 Corvette roadster (a former NCRS Top Flight winner) and a 1964 Sting Ray. Although despite the state of economy, Leake Auctions expects a fairly healthy number of buyers.
“Houston is a prime market for a car auction. As the fourth largest city in the United States, there are many car collectors in the area, says Richard Sevenoaks; President of Leake Auctions. “Houston has weathered the economic tide better than most cities and with the fluctuation in the stock market and low rates being paid on CDs and savings, more people are investing in cars. Collecting cars remains a solid investment. We anticipate a successful auction.”
[Source Leake Auctions]
It sometimes makes you wonder about the kind of world we live in. Many people in the US are still in economy mode, yet if you’d been at Monterey this past weekend for the big collector car auctions, you’d think we’re in the midst of another boom. In particular, Gooding & Company had a banner weekend, generating $64 million from just 106 cars, though many were rare, true blue chip examples.
The highest priced sale of the weekend went to a 1959 Ferrari 250 Long Wheelbase California Spider, a Competizione racer that sold for a whopping $7, 260,000. Runner up at Gooding was a 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 Monza, which went for $6,710,00. To date that’s the highest single price ever paid for an Alfa at auction. Rounding off the high dollar triumvirate at Gooding’s Monterey event was another Ferrari 250, this time a 1961 Short wheelbase Berlinetta hot rod – the winning bid for that one was a substantial $6,105,000.
It was interesting to note that out of the 10 ten sellers at Gooding all them went for more than $1.6 million, including such cars as a 1928 Mercedes-Benz S26/180 boattail speedster ($3,740,00); a 1956 Maserati 200SI ($2,640,000) and a 1966 Ford GT40 ($1,650,000).
[Source: Gooding & Company]
Ford and super car enthusiasts will have a unique opportunity to purchase Steve Saleen’s personal Ford GT when it crosses the auction block at Russo and Steele’s event in Monterey, on Saturday August 14th at 9.30 pm. Although a production run of just over 4000 units mean that any Ford GT is a rare and desirable car, this particular example is even more so.
For starters, it’s number five of the nine prototype GTs built and was the only one of them to have it’s 5.4-liter DOHC V-8 fitted with a hand-built twin-screw supercharger. The car has never been titled and currently displays less than 4000 miles on the odometer. It’s also a star of the silver screen, having been featured in films such as State of the Union, XXX, Fast and Furious and Rocky VI.
Steve Saleen will be present when the car is auctioned off and the vehicle comes autographed by the man himself. For more information on this car, click on the link below.
[Source: Russo and Steele]
This November, Mecum auctions is putting together a one-time special event, when it auctions off the Bob McDorman collection at No Reserve in Canal Winchester, Ohio on November 5-6. McDorman; a long time car collector, enthusiast and Chevrolet dealer, amassed a collection of more than 150 cars over the years, including a number of highly prized Corvettes, which comprise one from each model year, several with #1 serials and a pair of custom Sting Rays originally owned by former Chevy division Boss Semon ‘Bunkie’ Knudsen and his wife Florence.
Along with the cars, a wide range of memorabilia will also be up for sale including neon signs and automotive parts. For more information on this unique auction, click on the link below.
[Source: Mecum Auctions]
In the world of collector car auctions, it often seems that you need a sizable wad of cash to play. Well at Mecum’s Des Moines Auction, held on July 16-17, at the Iowa State Fairgrounds, it proved to be quite the opposite, as there were a number of good deals to be had on what can be considered some fairly desirable classic cars
A total of 500 collectible vehicles crossed the block including numerous muscle cars, big ’50s and ’60s cruisers and even a smattering of hot rods. A 1965 Shelby Mustang G.T.350 was billed as one of the highest profile vehicles, but when the gavel settled, the top sale went to a 1969 Chevy Camaro SS convertible with the Z-11 Indianapolis Pace Car package (Lot S93), which went for $66,000. Other reasonable deals were a 1966 Pontiac GTO ragtop, which sold for $47,500, a 1961 283 powered Corvette ($47,000) and a 1970 Plymouth ’Cuda AAR which went for the same amount as the ’Vette.
While Des Moines might not have the glamor of the big Scottsdale and Monterey auctions, it proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that there’s still a budget for just about everybody in the classic car hobby. If you’re smart and savvy, auctions like Mecum Des Moines often present the best opportunity to get your hands on a quality car without having to re-mortgage the house. Which, these days, for most true enthusiasts, is something to celebrate.
[Source: Mecum Auctions]
A few years ago, it seemed that the price of certain collector cars, specifically muscle era Chevrolets and Mopars had no end in sight. There was the $3 million ‘Cuda and Ray Allen’s drag prepped ’70 Chevelle SS that went for a cool $1.2 million at Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale parade in 2006.
Recently B-J hosted it’s first collector car event in Orange County, but despite the inclusion of a classic car rally (a cool idea we might add), cruise-in barbeque, charity fundraisers and a fashion show, the sale price of the vehicles up for grabs, even with 18 hours of live coverage on SPEED was a far cry from the heady days of 2006. The top selling cars struggled to fetch much more than a quarter million dollars – the best performer being a 1970 Chevelle SS 454 convertible (similar to the car pictured above). When the gavel came down, the SS sold for $253,000. It’s perhaps interesting to note that another Chevelle SS 454 ragtop went for $231,000 at R-M’s San Diego Auction, which indicates that prices for prime Detroit muscle are stabilizing, witnessing a similar pattern to what happened in the early 1990s. Another Chevelle, this time a resto-mod hardtop, rang in $250,000 – making it the runner up at B-J.
Below the Chevelles, there was a whole clump of cars in the $160-190,000 range. Highlights included a highly modified Plymouth Road Runner from Fast & Furious and Tokyo Drift feature films that went for $187,000; a custom 1941 Willys coupe that sold for $181,500 and a gorgeous 1967 big-block Corvette roadster that went for just $500 less than the Willys.
It was interesting to note that the mood was quite particular, some cars bringing on enthusiastic bidding while for others it was glacial. An interesting car to cross the block was a 1972 Dodge Challenger – a promo car built originally for the TV show ‘Mod Squad’ using a 1971 body (since no factory 72 ragtops were ever built). Yet despite it’s interesting past and being loaded with options it failed to make the top 30 list and was eclipsed by cars as diverse as a 1962 Thunderbird Sports Roadster ($100,000) and a 1948 Hudson Commodore 8 that ran up $85,500 under the spotlight.
Barrett-Jackson’s next auction is Las Vegas, which will be held at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino on the southern end of the strip, on September 23-25. It will be interesting to see how things fair in Sin City.
As the excitement continues to build for Mecum’s Monterey event, the auction house has announced that a 1966 Aston Martin DB6, originally owned by entertainer Bing Crosby, will be joining the list of high-profile classics set to cross the block during the weekend of August 13-14 at the Hyatt Resort and Spa.
This particular DB6 is an original left-hand drive example and sports its original interior, but has been the subject of a major refurbishment, including new wire wheels and tires (but with the original factory spinners), plus a rebuilt fuel and brake system, including the infamous Mikuni triple carburetors. The car will be sold with a copy of the original title that bears Crosby’s name when it crosses the block.
The DB6 was originally introduced in September 1965 and was built until 1971, which today, still stands as the longest production run for any Aston Martin model. Nevertheless, the surviving cars are still highly revered in classic car circles and this one, thanks to the celebrity connection, will likely fetch top dollar.
[Source: Mecum Auctions]
In 1969; Ford Motor Company and Bud Moore battled Roger Penske and Chevrolet in the Sports Car Club of America’s Trans American Sedan championship for supremacy. Now, one of the survivors of that tremendous season is being put up for sale.
Despite being highly competitive in the 1969 season (Bud Moore/Ford team drivers Parnelli Jones and George Follmer won four out of the first five races) a series of late season mishaps, including a spectacular three car crash at Ste. Jovite gave Mark Donohue and the Team Penske Camaros the edge and the manufacturer’s title went to Chevrolet. Nevertheless, the surviving Trans Am Mustangs from this golden era, still command serious money when they go up for sale today.
One of only two genuine 1969 Trans Am Mustangs still in existence, is this car – chassis number 112074, which is due to be auctioned off at Russo and Steele’s event in Monterey on August 12-14th. This particular machine made it’s competition debut at the Citrus 250 NASCAR race in February 1969, driven by Parnelli Jones. Built originally as a Daytona Special, it became the Bud Moore prototype and later the team’s main car during the 1969 Trans Am season. It’s also significant in being the only 1969 Trans Am Mustang to be raced both by Bud Moore and Team Shelby. The car, which is fully certified and documented by both the Federation Internationale d’Automobile (FIA) and the Historic Trans Am Registry, is likely to attract a lot of attention and some very serious bidding at Russo and Steele. Make sure you check back with AutoGuide for the final sales results from this highly anticipated auction.