Barrett-Jackson Palm Beach 2011 – Auction Report

Report by Rick Carey, Auction Editor

Palm Beach, now in its ninth year, was the Barrett-Jackson Auction Company’s first continuously successful geographic expansion.

Palm Beach brought “the experience” of Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale to a new venue far from Scottsdale’s WestWorld and demonstrated that it was a viable, vital concept outside the limits of Barrett-Jackson’s home turf and the January window.

Since then Palm Beach has explored new initiatives – tours, shows, previews – that have then translated to the glitz of Las Vegas and the car-centric culture of Orange County as well as to Scottsdale. It also brought new consignors and bidders from the East Coast and Canada who found Florida a more familiar setting than Arizona’s Valley of the Sun.

2011 brought another new – or rather, recycled – concept to Palm Beach, reserves. Eschewed in Barrett-Jackson auctions since 2005, reserves (previously agreed but undisclosed minimum bids sellers would accept) eased consignors’ concerns over the possibility of not finding just the right combination of bidders.

The change was announced only in mid-February, after Scottsdale 2011, and from the aggregate numbers would seem to have had little effect on Palm Beach consignments.

The sale total of $14,774,875 is the lowest at Palm Beach since 2004’s sale sold 298 of 338 offered with a total of $11.5 million. It is less than half of the 2006 and 2007 sale totals of $34.6 million and $32.1 million respectively.

Lightning still strikes on the B-J block, however, as several of the cars reported in the following narrative reveal. It also brought increasing activity from absentee and Internet bidders who spent $926,500, 6.2% of the total.

Barrett-Jackson is a “Collector Car Event”. The auction and the auction cars are its core but increasingly it is the spectator event – the sponsors, vendors and increasingly the charity sales which in Palm Beach brought in $445,000 on cars alone plus more than $67,000 in spontaneous donations – that are its focus.

The auction cars were reviewed and reported by Jonathan Sierakowski. Rick Carey remains responsible for the descriptions, opinions and for this summary.

(See Reference – Auctions Explained, A Note on Conditions and Character).

Barrett-Jackson Palm Beach 2011 – Auction Report

1950 Chevrolet Bel Air 2-Dr. Hardtop
Lot # 23 1950 Chevrolet Bel Air 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 21HKG62291; Mist Green, Black roof/Black vinyl with cloth inserts; Cosmetic restoration, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $15,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $17,050 -- Green wheels with black pinstripe and hubcaps, wide trim rings, radio, tissue dispenser, fender skirts. Straight body, good older paint with a few chips. Driver's door sagging. Chrome has light even pits throughout. Underside dirty and driver quality with black textured paint flaking off. Interior original and moderately worn. 51,111 miles from new and original except for the repaint. This Bel Air is not in particularly attractive condition but its originality and preservation goes a long way to making up for it. The price paid here would have bought a better restored car, making the choice one of originality over appearance. The bidders' determination of value cannot be faulted.
1924 Ford Model T C-cab Pickup
Lot # 24.1 1924 Ford Model T C-cab Pickup; S/N 10490782; Black/Black vinyl; Older restoration, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $15,250 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $16,775 -- Black wood spoke wheels. Silver rims heavily chipped, lots of chips along body edges and joints. Wood varnish rubbed through. Steering wheel delaminating. Brake lever heavily worn. An older correct restoration that shows its use and age but will still make a decent driver. The body style is very unusual and this Model T was purchased for a price commensurate with that of a more common passenger car. The buyer got a good value in terms of rarity and this car still has plenty of potential for parade, farm or advertising duty.
1948 Buick Roadmaster 4-Dr. Sedan
Lot # 28 1948 Buick Roadmaster 4-Dr. Sedan; S/N 51560067; Black/Black leather, Black vinyl; Cosmetic restoration, 3- condition; Hammered Sold at $17,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $18,700 -- Dynaflow, black steel wheels with full wheel discs and wide whitewalls. Front bumper guards, fender skirts, radio, heater, dash clock. Door panels loose. Rear seat has original leather and front recovered in vinyl with a different pattern. Steering wheel rotten. Original chrome and trim with pits and heavy scratches. Underside painted black; an auction car. The sloppy presentation left a lot to be desired and the seller should be happy that the bidders weren't paying attention. A car that would be better avoided, and no value at this price.
1942 Chevrolet Custom Pickup
Lot # 28.1 1942 Chevrolet Custom Pickup; S/N BD215513; Red, Black fenders/Black vinyl; Older restoration, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $26,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $29,150 -- Red wheels with Chevrolet caps and skinny whitewalls. Represented as 57,608 miles from new. Lots of orange peel in the paint and driver's door has a prominent scratch. Running boards are nicely refinished but the stainless bed slats are heavily scratched. Underside was nicely refinished but is now driver quality. A decent older truck restoration that has been enjoyed. Although an older restoration the paint damage and orange peel can be easily repaired. The fact that it's a rare 1942 model helped fuel the bidding and achieve a healthy price. Its rarity makes it worth the money, but it deserves better than its current attempt at a restoration.
1949 Willys Jeepster Phaeton
Lot # 36 1949 Willys Jeepster Phaeton; S/N 82789P; Maroon, Tan coachline/Red leather with Tan edges; Tan cloth top; Older restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $25,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $27,500 -- Cream steel wheels with hubcaps and trim rings. Whitewalls are dryrotted. Chrome decent but stainless around the body is scratched and original step plates have only been highly polished. Interior very lightly worn. Decent paint with some chips and cracks around top of doors. Very attractive color scheme and stated to be well sorted. A very nice driver. Excellent overall presentation and a fair price to buyer and seller.
1957 Ford F-100 Pickup
Lot # 37 1957 Ford F-100 Pickup; S/N F10J7R28501; Grey-Blue/Grey leather; Truck restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $18,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $19,800 -- 6-cylinder, 3-speed, body color wheels with correct hubcaps and trim rings. Deep mirror chrome. Straight Flareside body with excellent paint. Dash excellent. Leather seat upholstery worn but inviting. Underside nicely restored but not overdone. Natural wood bed planks with black bedliner on the sides. A mild custom truck, mostly in the upgraded interior, showing some age and use. Although not particularly rare this truck was extremely well presented. The B-J bidders were less than excited, probably after spotting the six under the hood. It is a sound value at this price.
1914 Ford Model T Speedster
Lot # 45 1914 Ford Model T Speedster; S/N 8924075; Black/Black leather; Older restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $18,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $19,800 -- Black wire wheels with covered rear-mounted spare, wooden trunk, bulb horn, push-button Klaxon, acetylene headlamps and kerosene sidelamps. The mount for the monocle windscreen even has Ford script. Chassis lightly worn with nice patina, fender paint has a few chips but very well preserved. Brass has been about 70% polished and clearcoated so it looks like it just came out of the barn. A well preserved older restoration. The bidding stalled around $10K until finally picking up speed and hammering home. This speedster was cool cool cool with excellent patina and a throaty exhaust note that drew crowds when it was being pulled out of the tent to go to the block. It is well worth the money paid.
1951 Chrysler Imperial Convertible
Lot # 61.1 1951 Chrysler Imperial Convertible; S/N 7747605; Cream/Red leather; Tan cloth top; Older restoration, 3- condition; Hammered Sold at $18,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $19,800 -- Red wheels with full covers and wide whitewalls. Power windows, AM radio. Older paint with lots of touched-up chips on panel edges. Front-end chrome and side sweeps replated with all the rest left tired, crazed and worn through in places. New top and interior with older interior trim. Underside old and dirty. Reputedly displayed at the Chrysler Museum until three years ago. The rechroming that was done cost a few dollars but the result is inconsistent and off-putting. Sold for appropriate money given the work needed to bring the car up to a more presentable level.
1960 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible
Lot # 64.2 1960 Cadillac Series 62 Convertible; S/N 60F032351; Blue/Dark Blue leather; Dark Blue vinyl top; Cosmetic restoration, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $51,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $56,650 -- Full wheel covers that look like they came off a mid-70's model, whitewall tires, power windows, power locks, P/S, P/B, A/C, cruise control, Autronic Eye. Represented as 92,220 miles from new. Bumpers rechromed with other pieces done selectively which gives a very inconsistent look although at least the window frames have been redone. New top. Interior older with light patina. Underside worn and driver quality. Paint buffed and resprayed in places and has orange peel. Sold with reserve. An auction fluff & buff. Sold with reserve. The seller got good money for a car that needs chroming and other detail work to make it consistent but even that work won't add enough value to make it to the next price level. Best kept in sound and usable condition and driven, a use for which this price is appropriate.
1954 Oldsmobile 98 2-Dr. Coupe Holiday
Lot # 98 1954 Oldsmobile 98 2-Dr. Coupe Holiday; S/N 549M34867; Light Blue, Dark Blue/Grey cloth with pattern inserts; Cosmetic restoration, 3- condition; Hammered Sold at $21,382 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $23,520 -- 324/185 with Hydra-Matic. AM radio, dash clock, Autronic Eye. Body colored wheels with spinner hubcaps and wide whitewalls. Factory front and rear A/C. Bumpers rechromed but all other pieces tired and pitted. Old black undercoating peeling ff. Older light blue paint has lots of orange peel and edge chips with nicer dark blue paint which is much more recent. It's a tired old sedan that needs a lot of everything to make it respectable looking but the design of the air conditioning duct work with the clear rear passages and quarter-panel vents that the bidders just had to have it. The seller should be very pleased to get this much for a car that has many needs.
1987 Mercedes-Benz 560SL Roadster
Lot # 320.1 1987 Mercedes-Benz 560SL Roadster; S/N WDBBA48D3HA059746; Red/Tan leather, Black cloth top; Unrestored original, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $8,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $8,800 -- Polished alloy wheels, A/C, Becker radio. Original chrome scratched and cloudy. Decent original paint with lots of touchups on the nose and rear end. New driver's seat leather and worn steering wheel but the interior has been generally well maintained. Underside undercoated. Stated to be dealer serviced from new. A decent driver. Despite the very presentable cosmetic condition, the price paid reflects a car that will need an increasing amount of TLC due to its high mileage.
1984 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet
Lot # 334 1984 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet; S/N WP0EB0910ES170334; Gold/Black leather; Black cloth top; Cosmetic restoration, 3+ condition; Hammered Sold at $20,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $22,000 -- Wide body kit, custom black and stainless ROH rims, CD stereo. Excellent repaint with chips on the nose. New interior unworn. Mildly customized but not overly specialized. Odometer shows 6,732 miles. The mileage is likely 106,000 and warranted some heavy cosmetic work that resulted in the modifications made. A very sharp looking car and not a bad value considering the rims and tires make up a good chunk of the price paid.
1962 Chevrolet Impala 2-Dr. Hardtop
Lot # 336 1962 Chevrolet Impala 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 21847J221083; Gold/Dark green with striped cloth inserts; Recent restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $22,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $24,750 -- 327/300hp, automatic, black wheels with spinner wheel covers and skinny whitewalls, A/C, P/S, P/B, power seats. New deep chrome, excellent paint and panel fit, boody 90% straight. Interior unworn in a highly attractive color. Underside neat and presentable but not over the top. The money paid was commensurate with its condition and the lackluster driveline. The interior color combination was highly attractive and if the exterior was a different color it would not be surprising to see it bring a little more money. As is the price was fair to both parties.
1959 Ford Fairlane 500 Convertible
Lot # 339 1959 Ford Fairlane 500 Convertible; S/N 476BK59545644; Blue, White/Blue, White leather; White vinyl top; Recent restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $37,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $40,700 -- 332/225hp, automatic, wheel covers, whitewall tires, P/S, P/B, AM radio. Nice paint but wavy body and variable panel fit. All chrome refinished. New interior and dash. Underside very nicely restored. A very nicely restored vehicle with great attention to detail throughout. The restoration cost certainly exceeded the price paid here and the buyer should be happy with what he got. Sold at the Leake Oklahoma City sale in February 2010 for $24,200, then at B-J Orange County June 2010 where it brought $35,200. An attractive car, but this is all the money for it.
1935 Ford Model 48 Phaeton
Lot # 354 1935 Ford Model 48 Phaeton; S/N 182090352; Vineyard Green/Brown leatherette; Tan cloth top; Older restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $38,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $41,800 -- Green wire wheels with trim rings and wide whitewalls, factory radio, wind wings, dual exterior mirrors, dual horns, banjo steering wheel, rear-mounted spare with metal cover and dual taillights. Carpet and interior very fresh with no wear. Dash has a prominent stress crack in the center. Top has moderate soiling from storage and one small tear. All brightwork is show quality. Excellent body but paint has chips and cracks. Underside showing its age. A beautiful but aged restoration that needs some paint work and a new top to be truly spectacular but is still a car that the owner will have pride driving or showing. This is a fair price for a rare and desirable body style with limited needs.
1958 Studebaker Transtar Pickup
Lot # 355 1958 Studebaker Transtar Pickup; S/N E5126466; Blue, White/Tan vinyl with White inserts; Truck restoration, 1- condition; Hammered Sold at $36,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $39,600 -- White wheels with plain wheel covers. Excellent chrome and paint with some orange peel. Interior unworn. A body off restoration with over the top chassis presentation. Textured bedliner coating in the bed detracts from the overall effect, but still an outstanding Studebaker pickup. This was an extremely high-quality piece. The bidders recognized that and the winner paid all the money and maybe a little extra to get it.
1929 Buick Model 47 4-Dr. Sedan
Lot # 623 1929 Buick Model 47 4-Dr. Sedan; S/N 2254542; Dark Red, Black fenders/Brown mohair; Cosmetic restoration, 3+ condition; Hammered Sold at $22,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $24,200 -- Stained artillery wheels with black rims and whitewall tires. rearview mirror with clock, single wiper, rear mounted spare. A solid barn find that was given a new interior and a repaint applied over small body dents and with lots of orange peel left. Runningboards not restored. Crazing in headlight bezel and radiator nickel. Underside painted black and not detailed. Stated to have been taken down to the frame and accompanied by photographic restoration documentation. This car may have been fully disassembled but the restoration was superficial at best. It is a lot of car for the money, but collectors have little appreciation for these big sedans. The seller should be happy to get this much for a car that had such mediocre attention.
1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 2-Dr. Hardtop
Lot # 629 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 2-Dr. Hardtop; S/N 136370B160814; Black, White stripes/Black vinyl; Modified restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $42,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $46,200 -- Upgraded with LS5 454 and LS6 camshaft, Weiand intake, Holley carburetor, 2’ headers, 3’ exhaust, Turbo 400 automatic, 3.31 Positraction, 4-wheel disc brakes, A/C, tilt steering column, P/S, P/B, dual gate shifter automatic, Rallye wheels, Goodrich tires, tinted glass, buckets and console. Body wavy and paint has light scratches and a large defect near driver's side quarter window. Chrome has heavy polishing marks. Underside would be presentable with light cleaning detail. This car has some cool performance upgrades, but the deterioration of the paint doesn't speak highly of the quality of the restoration. This is a generous price for a Resto-Mod with this presentation.