If you are a car guy or gal, you are already well aware that a Ferrari 250 GTO set the world record when it sold for an astounding 38 million dollars at the Bonhams Quail Lodge Sale. You would also know that RM Auctions sold a Ferrari 275 GTB/C Speciale for $26.4 Million; pretty […]
If you are a car guy or gal, you are already well aware that a Ferrari 250 GTO set the world record when it sold for an astounding 38 million dollars at the Bonhams Quail Lodge Sale. You would also know that RM Auctions sold a Ferrari 275 GTB/C Speciale for $26.4 Million; pretty amazing for a car with little race history but had an off the chart coolness factor. What you may not know is that overall sales grew 38% from $309 Million in 2013 to $428 Million in 2014 with an amazing amount of 8 figure cars crossing the block. These cars include a 1964 Ferrari 250LM selling for $11.5 Million, Steve McQueen’s 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 selling at $10.1 Million, and a 1961 Ferrari SWB California Spider going for $15.1 Million just to name a few. Bonhams sold all 10 cars from the famed “Maranello Rosso” collection that included a 1953 Ferrari 250MM at $7.2 Million, a 1958 Ferrari 250GT Cabriolet at $6.8 Million, and one of our personal favorites, the 1962 Ferrari 250 SWB Speciale Aerodinamica also selling at $6.8 Million.
The common theme here is obviously Ferrari. The marque dominated the Monterey scene achieving the highest combine sales total. There was however, an interesting trend throughout the weekend that we noticed: Discipline. Buyers were paying for quality, genuine cars with known history, stellar restorations, and rarity. Yes, an early 1961 Jaguar E-Type Roadster sold for over half a million dollars but it was the rarity, and quality of restoration that placed it above the rest. Gooding & Company failed to sell the 1966 Ferrari 365 P Berlinetta “Tre Posti” that was bid to a healthy $22.5 Million…a price we thought the owner should have been very happy with considering it was not the prettiest car. Furthermore, the unusually high estimates for mediocre Mercedes 190SL’s were buyers in years past would bid into the $200K range achieved appropriate mid $100K figures. These cars are good market indicators often being looked at as “bubble cars” achieving unusually high numbers because of general market hype. Another trend we noticed was a fair amount of “No-Sales” in the early Porsche 911 Category. Mecum was especially guilty of this but we attributed it to artificially high seller expectations. As the market grows for these cars, owners suddenly think there once hit, color change 1970 911T Targa is worth $70,000 because of previous sales of honest cars.
For the LBI Crew (or “Cheese Steak Posse” as our good friends in Pacific Grove called us throughout the weekend) it began with a drive from San Francisco to Monterey via the gorgeous Pacific Coastal Highway. We had traded an Austin Healey for a 2006 Lotus Elise in which we were going to drive throughout the week. It was a brilliant thought until we realized the storage capacity of the car is barely a bottle of water. We had two duffle bags, laptop bags and a backpack. Andrew had most of the luggage on his lap for the majority of the 3 hour drive. Not to mention when taking a pit stop, the car was next to impossible to get in and out of. The sight was something you would typically see on a Top Gear episode!
The first event on the list was Concours on the Avenue in downtown Carmel. It was one of the highlights of the week with many local cars making an appearance. Mainly post war sports cars, our favorites included the striking Blue over Red Ferrari Daytona Coupe with Borrani wire wheels, the Gulf Racing colored Porsche 917, and a particular 1973 Porsche 911 Coupe that had the most amazing options list we have ever seen. It was Slate Gray over green fitted with sport seats and houndstooth inserts to name a few. Another personal favorite was an all original Porsche 550 Spyder with race history. The show was a smashing success with excellent cars and complementing atmosphere.
After much convincing, we decided to attended the McCall Monterey Jet Center party that could have possibly been the most extravagant and opulent party we have ever seen or experienced. It was like a scene out of a movie; Private jets, vintage military planes, multi-million dollar cars, caviar stations, champagne, and women that were more expensive than anything else in the room. It was a really great time and worth every penny of the $395 admission fee. Our favorite sight was THE Ford Mustang Prototype that looked more like a smaller GT40 rather than a mustang. A priceless piece of motoring history right there in front of our eyes sitting next to a P51 Mustang fighter plane. This event took us right into the next day where we stood track side at Laguna Seca watching practice rounds of the Monterey Historics race. Seeing two Mercedes 300SL Gullwings going head to head on one of our all-time favorite tracks was a moment that we will never forget. Earlier in the week, we had met with a friend, Roy Spencer who in fact found a binder filled with old racing photos, memorabilia and stories told by his late father and privateer racer (friends with Phil Hill and other historic racing stars). Absolutely amazing photos of Laguna Seca Racing action from the 50’s and 60’s that he recently compiled into his self-published book, The Motor Binder. It is a real treat for any car guy or gal. Within the book you will see a striking Maserati 151 LeMans Coupe that was once owned by Bev Spencer, Roy’s Father and was shown on the lawn at Pebble Beach and driven by Derek Hill during the Historics Race. Pick up your copy here, we highly recommend it: http://motorbinder.com/
After days of constant car events, great dinners and breakfasts at our favorite spot, The Wagon Wheel, our week concluded in extravagant fashion at the Pebble Beach Concours where it never ceases to amaze us. The quality of hand-picked cars is simply the best in the world. Shockingly, there was not a pre-war classic that won best of show this year. Rather, the epic 1954 Ferrari 375MM Scaglietti Coupe won all the marbles and entered into the history books as the only post war car to win “Best of Show” in 40 years.
If you did not make it to the Peninsula this year, do not miss it next year! In other news, we are planning an evening event at the LBI Stable for all of our clients, friends, and families October 5th. A few days before the AACA Fall Hershey Meet and a day before the Bonhams Sale at Fred Simone’s Museum in Philadelphia. Stay Tuned for more details and contact us if you would like to attend. Go to our Facebook page to see a full photo gallery of the week!