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Original 1955-57 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL gullwings don’t tend to come up for sale very often, yet when they do they often attract a lot of attention and interest from big money collectors.
This past weekend’s Gooding & Company auction in Scottsdale, Arizona, was no exception, where one example fetched a cool $4.62 million.
Mercedes built some 1,400 Gullwing coupes before the car was succeeded by the heavier and slightly more conventional 300SL roadster, yet this particular car drew attention because it was one of a handful of aluminum bodied cars built (most SLs sported steel bodies with just the hood, doors and decklid made from aluminum).
The cost of the entire aluminum body was exorbitant, even by 1950s standards, which helps explain why so few SLs (29) were ordered this way, yet combined with some 176 lbs in weight savings, along with the direct fuel injected 3.0-liter straight six, the result was a fast and extremely desirable Grand Tourer (top speeds of more than 160 mph were easily possible).
The Gooding sale at Scottsdale marks a record for a classic Mercedes gullwing; most of these cars (though we’re refering to steel bodied examples) tend to go for around $500,000-$600,000, when they come up for sale.
[Source: Gooding & Company]
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]
As excitement for the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance grows in the run up to the August 14-15 weekend, more and more desirable cars are popping up for the event and the auctions held the same weekend. One of them is a stunning 1971 Lamborghini Miura S (similar to the car shown here), which will form part of Gooding & Company’s annual auction at Pebble Beach.
The Miura,styled by Marcello Gandini represents perhaps the finest expression of ’60s Italian super car style and it’s mid-engine design stole a lead on just about everybody else, including Ferrari. Built from 1966-71 it became a modern classic and today suriving Miuras still trade hands for considerable sums – the car up for grabs at the Gooding Auction is said to be worth between $500,000- $650,000 in it’s current condition.
Gooding’s theme at Monterey this year will be ‘significant examples of Italian performance and design’ and what could be more appropriate than a Miura S?
Other significant Italian machinery up for grabs include a 1955 Maserati AG6/54 Berlinetta with body by Zagato; a 1956 Maserati 200 SI once raced by Stirling Moss and a 1959 Ferrari 250 GT long wheelbase California Spider ‘Competizione’.
[Source: Edmunds Inside Line]