Mecum Monterey 2014 – Auction Report

Mecum Auctions Monterey 2014 – Auction Report Page Five

1972 McLaren M20 Can-Am; S/N M20-1
Lot # S170 1972 McLaren M20 Can-Am; S/N M20-1; Gulf Orange/Black; Competition restoration, 2 condition; Hammered Sold at $2,000,000 plus commission of 8.00%; Final Price $2,160,000. – Aluminum Reynolds 494 V-8, 750 hp. – Peter Revson’s 1972 McLaren team car with three podium finishes, Raced by Roy Woods, driven by David Hobbs in 1973, Scooter Patrick for Herb Caplan in 1974, Milt Mintner in 1975 and George Follmer in 1976, but never competitive with the Porsche 917s or Shadows. Owned by Don Devine since 1986, period Reynolds aluminum engine with infrequent historic racing appearances. Original tub and bodywork. Unusually sharp, clean and orderly. – This McLaren M20 needs some thought. It was never, in any real sense, successful against the Porsche 917s, only a reliable contender if the Turbo Panzers failed, which they rarely did. The owner, however, was adamant that it was a $2 million car and he harried Dana Mecum into finding a matching bid, a triumph of determination over logic. Asked after the sale if ‘his heart was heavy, but so was his wallet’, Devine nodded without comment. This is a benchmark transaction.
1966 Shelby Cobra 427 Roadster
Lot # S173 1966 Shelby Cobra 427 Roadster; S/N CSX 3172; Black/Black leather; Modified restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $1,000,000 plus commission of 8.00%; Final Price $1,080,000. – S/C spec restoration with black side exhausts, black driver’s rollbar, centerlock sunburst wheels, 427 side-oiler engine, 4-barrel, 42 gallon tank, outside fuel filler. – Good paint, interior, chrome and engine compartment. Holding up very well. Once seized by DEA and sold in a sealed bid auction, updated to S/C specs by Lister Restorations in the early 90’s and essentially unused since. – A colorful history but not punctuated by notable damage or misuse. Offered at Barrett-Jackson in 1992 where it no-saled at $275,000, sold by Mecum at Indy in 2010 for $662,500 in comparable condition to its appearance today. It has 97 more miles on the odometer now than it did in 2010, which accounts for the careful preservation and quality appearance. The S/C upgrades don’t add to its value, but make it a lot more menacing.
1954 Ferrari 375 MM Spider, Body by Pinin Farina
Lot # S178 1954 Ferrari 375 MM Spider, Body by Pinin Farina; S/N 0362AM; Engine # 0376;, , /; Competition restoration, 2+ condition; Not sold at Hammer bid of $5,750,000. – RHD. Full width Plexiglas windshield, metal cover over passenger’s seat, silver painted Borrani wire wheels, Blockley 6.00-16 tires. – Bought from Ferrari by Tony Parravano, timed at 172mph at El Mirage in 1954, raced by Jack McAfee, Bob Drake and others. Lightly toasted at Sebring in 1955. Later owned by Frank Arciero in shortened form with a fiberglass body and driven by Dan Gurney in the 1958 Times-Mirror GP at Riverside. Eventually cut up, parts were accumulated by Fred Peters and Charles Betz in the mid-80’s. Restored with a new body by Steve Beckman with engine 0376 (internal #204). Very good paint and interior. Restored to like new condition with better cosmetics and bodywork. – Beautifully restored (if that’s the right term) from a confused mess of parts tracked through several southern California shops and owners over the years. The engine is the right type, but not the right engine. The body’s all new. Not surprisingly, the bidders were reluctant to give this revitalized 375 MM much credit. Another car claiming the same identity was offered at Brooks Monaco auction in 2000.
1961 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet SII, Body by Pininfarina
Lot # S181 1961 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet SII, Body by Pininfarina; S/N 2441; Red/Black leather; Black cloth top; Visually maintained, largely original, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $2,250,000 plus commission of 8.00%; Final Price $2,430,000. – Chrome spoke Borrani wire wheels, Dunlop tires, Becker Europa TR AM-FM. – Right vent window frame doesn’t fit the windshield post. Mediocre old repaint, weak chrome trim, badly flaking rear bumper center section. Engine internal #320E. Engine compartment painted over flaked old paint many years ago. Wheel wells got the same treatment. Upholstery is lightly stretched. Old top has some abrasion tears where it has rubbed while stowed. Decent old repaint with chips at the hood corners. Badly scuffed driver’s door sill plates show far more use than the claimed 5,411 kilometers. A used Ferrari that can be driven, but not too proudly, in this condition. – The visible evidence of wear does not make for willing acceptance of the claimed 5,411 km from new, but it brought a healthy premium for low kilometers anyway, even if not for originality, because it’s been repainted both outside and under the hood. The bad vent window frame fit in not a healthy sign, either and it is an expensive Ferrari in its current condition.
1968 Shelby Turbine Indy Car
Lot # S183 1968 Shelby Turbine Indy Car; S/N BoS; Gold, , Blue stripe/Black; Older restoration, 3+ condition; Not sold at Hammer bid of $450,000. – Gold centerlock alloy wheels, all-wheel hydraulic drive, display engine included. – Good paint. Display car for many years. Never raced at Indy, more’s the pity. Craftily engineered by Ken Wallis with a variable intake to get around USAC’s intake annulus restriction, but eventually proved to be unsuccessful even in the hands of ‘rookie’ driver Bruce McLaren as well as illegal. – A side note in the history of racing in general and the Indy 500 in particular, a highly engineered car with great potential done in by an uninformed rules change and an undercapitalized team. There was no interest in it today.
1970 Bizzarrini P538
Lot # S186 1970 Bizzarrini P538; S/N P538B04; Red/Greg cloth; Recent restoration, 2 condition; Not sold at Hammer bid of $500,000. – Full width Plexiglas windscreen, wimpy little individual roll bars, centerlock alloy wheels, Michelin XWX street tires. – Very good paint and interior. Restored like new, because it is. No history of any significance, a Bizzarrini-built ‘continuation’ car finished in 1978. – Had there been any money for this exotic looking ‘continuation’ car it should have sailed off the block to a new owner.
1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing
Lot # S188 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing; S/N 1980405500354; Engine # 1989805500331; Silver/Dark Red leather; Recent restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $1,350,000 plus commission of 8.00%; Final Price $1,458,000. – Hinged steering wheel, body color Rudge centerlock wheels, Vredestein tires, luggage, Becker Le Mans radio. – Fully restored with polished intake runners. Excellent paint, chrome and interior. Very clean and orderly, showing no appreciable use. – A sharp and correct Gullwing with Rudge wheels from the factory, documented with the build sheet. Bought appropriately and a car to be proud to own and drive at this price.

[Source: Rick Carey]

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Show Comments (3)

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  1. Lot #F105, “Phase 2 Austin-Healey” shows the front shroud light configuration and door handles of a Phase 1 car, although the VIN is given as HBJ8L/27836, a Phase 2 number. Mecum description says it’s a Kurt Tanner restoration to highest Concours standards, but how can that be if the VIN does not match the features of the car? The paint, too, while beautiful, is not an original color and would therefore lose points in Concours.

  2. Rick, I believe that any restorer worth his salt should use a favorable estimate of his work by your column as advertising. Your commentary and evaluations are free of the usual frippery done by writers not wanting to abrade the owner ego. Therefore, I will steer clear of having any of my cars evaluated. I already know the flaws. 🙂