Gooding Pebble Beach 2013 – Auction Report

Gooding & Company, Pebble Beach, California, August 17-18, 2013

Report and photos by Rick Carey, Auction Editor

Consider for a minute the implications of Gooding & Company’s performance at Pebble Beach this year:

  • The mean sold car was worth $965,675;
  • The median sold car brought $368,500;
  • 91.3% of the lots offered were sold on the block or shortly thereafter;
  • $112,018,350 changed hands.

Think of the wealth, the overflowing bank accounts gathered in Gooding’s Pebble Beach tent on Saturday and Sunday (don’t breathe a word of it to Occupy organizers who would find it a most opportune demonstration opportunity) that can part with a hundred million dollars for things no one needs. It is scarcely less than breathtaking.

Only eleven cars out of 127 offered failed to find new owners. Think of the work, the contacts, the cajoling, that went into corralling enough money into the tent, onto the phones and hooked up to the Internet to accomplish this and then the work that went into ‘splaining the cars to those both on-site and remote.

Gooding’s results are undeniable. The excitement in the tent was palpable. From time to time that excitement delivers transactions that are scarcely believable, but they frequently become benchmarks.

Concluding on Sunday evening after the Concours, Gooding’s Pebble Beach Auction is a fitting end to an extraordinary week: on the block, track, show fields and the avenues of the Monterey peninsula.

Gooding & Company
Cars Offered / Sold
Sale %
Sold < Low Est
Sold > High Est
Avg Sale
Total Sales
127 / 116
123 / 110
127 / 107
135 / 106
159 / 128
140 / 112

Gooding and Company Pebble Beach 2013 – Auction Report

1959 BMW-Isetta 300 Coupe
Lot # 1 1959 BMW-Isetta 300 Coupe; S/N 592213; Red/White; Estimate $30,000 – $40,000; Enthusiast restoration, 3+ condition; Hammered Sold at $30,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $33,000. No Reserve – US market model, sliding windows, canvas sunroof, whitewall tires – Restored more than 10 years ago but seemingly to amateur standards. Simple to restore but the paint is poorly prepped and showing age, interior fit is off. Not up to the standards of the best of Bruce Weiner’s microcars sold earlier this year, but a usable driver. – Average car, average price.
1960 Porsche 356B Super 90 Roadster
Lot # 2 1960 Porsche 356B Super 90 Roadster, Body by Drauz; S/N 88153; Engine # 800932; Black/Tan; Estimate $160,000 – $200,000; Modified restoration, 2 condition; Hammered Sold at $165,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $181,500. – Matching numbers, Bilstein shocks, lightweight flywheel, chromoly pushrods, stainless steel valves, regeared transmission, LED taillights, tools, books, records – Award-winning restoration completed in 2007, excellent paint and plating, rear bumper fit questionable, original interior replaced with very loud orangish color, worn weather-stripping. – The mechanical tweaks make this fun to drive but the LED taillights are curious, if effective. The price, however, leaves nothing (for the seller) to be desired in a heavily modified Porsche Roadster. For what it is, a fine-driving 356B Roadster, this is a lot of money.
1915 Pierce-Arrow Model 48 7-Passenger Suburban
Lot # 3 1915 Pierce-Arrow Model 48 7-Passenger Suburban; S/N 13304; Engine # 13304; Brown, Black/Tan; Estimate $175,000 – $260,000; Visually maintained, largely original, 3- condition; Hammered Sold at $145,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $159,500. – Dome roof body, whitewall tires, painted artillery wheels, matching-numbers engine, rear-mounted trunk, leather driver’s compartment, wool passenger interior, later (1918) starter and flywheel installed, ex-Milton Hershey – Highly original, showing some wear, rot in fenders, scratches in paint, dings in bodywork, dull nickel trim, brocade interior holding up well. A car that needs work, but is mechanically sound. Its issues are easily addressed and will be a much better car with some effort and modest amounts of money. – One of two remaining. Absolutely enormous–the President Taft of collector cars. A real eye catcher, but where on earth could you keep it? Will be welcomed at any concours and should hold its own on any tour with 524 cubic inches to propel it down the road. This is, in physical proportion, elegance and performance, a lot of car for the money.
1964 Austin-Healey 3000 Mk III Convertible
Lot # 4 1964 Austin-Healey 3000 Mk III Convertible; S/N HBJ8L26525; Engine # 29KRU-H1399; White/Red; Black top; Estimate $75,000 – $95,000; Recent restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $85,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $93,500. No Reserve – Overdrive, wire wheels, British Motor Heritage Trust certificate – Recently restored by a number of different shops, lacking cohesion in the workmanship and presentation. Thick paint, fair panel fit, OK plating, engine compartment average, some aspects of interior not exactly typical. – Specialist restorers like Kurt Tanner and Healey Lane have set the benchmark for Austin-Healeys in recent years, notable for their extraordinary attention to detail. This car wasn’t up to those standards but was only modestly discounted by the Pebble Beach Auction bidders in recognition of its presentation. It would not have been a bargain at the low estimate.
1968 Ferrari 330 GTC
Lot # 5 1968 Ferrari 330 GTC, Body by Pininfarina; S/N 11517; Yellow/Black leather; Estimate $500,000 – $600,000; Older restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $860,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $946,000. – Matching numbers, AM/FM radio, woodrim steering wheel, Borrani wire wheels, tool kit, Marcel Massini documentation, Ferrari Classiche certified – Prize-winning Norbert Hofer restoration, excellent Junior Conway Fly Yellow paint, chip guarded nose, good plating on chrome, rubber and glass without fault, oddly dull black leather interior. 2005 Cavallino Classic Platinum, Pebble Beach in 1998. – Sold by Christie’s here in 2003 for $156,000, then by Gooding in Scottsdale in 2010 for $374,000, this is a textbook example of the staggering price inflation of 330 GTCs in the last few years. It is a quality car with excellent care and only limited use in the past ten years, but the price even among today’s inflated 330/365 GTC values is unsupportable.
1985 Ferrari 288 GTO
Lot # 7 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO; S/N ZFFPA16B000055669; Red/Black; Estimate $1,200,000 – $1,500,000; Visually maintained, largely original, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $1,375,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $1,512,500. – One of four originally imported to California, limited-slip differential, fitted luggage, tool kit, full records, spares including the original fuel rails and Marelli injectors, Speedline wheels and headliner, dash and door panel material come with it – 20-year expert FCA ownership, extra clean in and out with superb repaint, engine-out service just complete. Spectacular condition with bulletproof provenance. – 288 GTOs, F40s, F50s and Enzos are on a value tear, racking up steadily higher prices at every opportunity. While this is a strong example with enough miles on it to keep it sharp and fresh and superb maintenance, its value is at the curl of the wave.
1928 Stutz Model BB Cabriolet Coupe
Lot # 8 1928 Stutz Model BB Cabriolet Coupe, Body by Phillips; S/N BB86S; Engine # 92300; Red, Maroon fenders/Tan leather; Beige cloth top; Estimate $80,000 – $110,000; Older restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $190,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $209,000. No Reserve – 131-inch wheelbase, rear-mounted trunk, wide whitewall tires, wire wheels, dual side-mounted spares with mirrors, rumble seat, tools, windshield visor – Carefully maintained in long-term ownership and very well restored in 1993, with numerous awards in the late 90’s. Still holding up well, with some chips and scratches from use. – An excellent example of a sophisticated redesign that ultimately saved the company in 1926. Competitive, too, with a near-win at Le Mans in 1928. Fantastic colors and uncommon body by Phillips vaulted this one to twice its estimate, but still a sound value in an exceptional car.
1958 Bentley S1 Continental 4-Dr. Sedan
Lot # 9 1958 Bentley S1 Continental 4-Dr. Sedan, Body by James Young; S/N BC23LEL; Engine # BC22E; Velvet Green/Tobacco leather; Estimate $300,000 – $400,000; Older restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $235,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $258,500. – Automatic, factory air conditioning, yellow-lensed driving lights, disc wheels with hubcaps and trim rings, blackwall tires, pushbutton radio – Elegant notchback bodywork. Comprehensively restored in 1992, color changed during restoration, long string of awards from both the RROC and from major concours d’elegances since restoration. Excellent paint, great plating, leather interior bright but unmarked and well fitted, very impressive burled wood dashboard. – One of three Continental Saloons coachbuilt by James Young and the only known left-hand drive survivor. R-Type Continental fastback prices have soared, and the notchback S-Types are gradually following them upwards. Despite its rarity and many awards, this was an appropriate price.
1937 Packard 115-C Cabriolet, Body by Graber
Lot # 11 1937 Packard 115-C Cabriolet, Body by Graber; S/N 115C-1088; Red/White leather; White cloth top; Estimate $150,000 – $200,000; Older restoration, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $150,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $165,000. No Reserve – 237/100hp six, 3-speed, hydraulic brakes, hubcaps, trim rings, whitewall tires, radio, rear-mounted cloth covered spare – Interesting one-off baby Packard, bodied by Hermann Graber in Switzerland. Recipient of a haphazard restoration back in the 1970s and very much showing its age. Paint cracking, chrome trim worn, interior pattern questionable, stained top. Due for a re-restoration. – One of an estimated six similar models built by Graber, a couple of which still survive. Hefty Germanic top will not look handsome when folded. Nevertheless it is rare and somebody signed up for the long haul. Sold just over low estimate, but that’s just the first expense.
1965 Ferrari 330 GT 2+2 Series II
Lot # 12 1965 Ferrari 330 GT 2+2 Series II, Body by Pininfarina; S/N 07761; Engine # 07761; Black/Brown leather; Estimate $240,000 – $280,000; Older restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $335,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $368,500. – Single headlights, yellow lenses, power windows, Becker Mexico multiband radio, Borrani wheels, full tool kit, books, spares. – Started life in France then exported to U.S. in 1980s, excellent trail of records and awards, restored, color changed. Excellent paint, interior well fitted, decent plating, clean, orderly engine compartment. A choice example of Ferrari’s gentleman’s express with an outstanding history of eight FCA Platinum and other awards. – Certainly one of the best 330 GT 2+2s around, and it was recognized by the Pebble Beach bidders with an exceptional price easily 1/3 ahead of what any comparable 330 GT 2+2 has realized in recent auctions.

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Show Comments (2)

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  1. “This result is beyond silly, it’s bizarre and out of contact with reality.”
    The reality is that the wealthy expect runaway inflation, and are wisely getting green money out of their portfolio. The manner in which they’re doing it doesn’t seem wise, but it will down the road.

  2. David,
    [David’s comment refers to the $126,500 VW Type 2 21-Window Microbus.]
    There is a certain logic to your observation, although I should have reserved the comment for RM’s Alfa 1750 Spider, at $121,000 even further detached from reality than the bus.
    My trouble with your rationale is that spending money foolishly is not a hedge against inflation. It is spending money without regard to how it might otherwise be employed. Either of these two vehicles could have been bought for much less than the high bid. A rational economic person does not throw $50 or $60 thousand away just in order to acquire a hard asset that could be acquired for much less. This is not ‘wisely getting green money out of their portfolio.’ It is replacing a asset that may depreciate by some unacceptable but as yet uncertain rate (‘green money’) with a hard asset that is already instantly depreciated by 30-60% by over-paying for it.
    That isn’t a hedge against inflation.