The RM Sotheby’s Arizona 2017 sale was staged January 19-20 at the Arizona Biltmore Resort in Phoenix, resulting in $53,772,775 in total sales and an 89 percent sell-through rate. RM’s 18th annual Arizona Auction Week event attracted bidders from 30 countries with a selection of 159 automobiles.
The top result at the 2017 RM Sotheby’s Arizona sale was the one-off, owner-commissioned 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540 K Special Roadster. Originally built for Rolf Horn of Berlin with a rare five-speed transmission and various unique design cues, the restored Roadster sold for a final $6,600,000 during Friday evening’s sale session.
Throughout Friday’s sale, numerous best-of-category Ferraris also took top honors, led by a matching-numbers 1969 Ferrari 365 GTS. One of 20 built, the road-going Ferrari surpassed its pre-sale estimate, realizing $3,602,500, nearly triple the previous auction record for the model.
Rounding out the top three, a 1995 Ferrari F50, one of two U.S.-delivery examples finished in black, sold for $3,135,000 — a new auction benchmark for the model. Friday night also saw the restored, ex-Greg Garrison and Skeets Dunn 1961 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB Coupe Aerodinamico generate a result of $3,080,000, while a 1967 Ferrari 330 GTS sold at the top end of its estimate at $2,475,000.
“Our Arizona sale is consistently a bellwether for the collector car market, setting the pace for the auction season to come,” says Ian Kelleher, Managing Director of RM Sotheby’s West Coast Division. “This year’s top ten sales clearly indicate that demand for modern supercars remains strong, while exceptional pre-war classics — such as the 540 K — anchor the strength and resilience of the market. When it comes to specific marques, four decades of Ferrari production were represented in our catalogue, from the 400 Superamerica through to the Enzo, each of which attracted multiple bidders and achieved impressive results — a reflection of their outstanding provenance, restorations and condition. We now turn our attention to Paris, where we’ll open our European calendar next month.”
To cater to the growing appetite for modern high performance motor cars, RM’s 2017 Arizona offering had a strong emphasis on vehicles from 1980 and later. As a group, these examples comprised approximately 25 percent of the catalogue. In addition to the F50, leading this segment was Thursday’s headliner, a 2003 Ferrari Enzo, purchased new and offered by renowned designer, Tommy Hilfiger. Fastidiously maintained and driven just 3,620 miles, the 218 mph hypercar roared onto the auction stage before selling for a final $2,695,000. Among other notable modern collectibles, a 2003 Aston Martin DB AR1 Zagato with 800 actual miles exceeded estimate at $379,500; a U.S.-specification 2005 Porsche Carrera GT, showing 1,132 miles from new, garnered $742,500; and a F22 Raptor-inspired 2008 Lamborghini Reventón, the third of 20 examples built, realized $1,320,000.
With more than 60 percent of catalogue entries offered without reserve, the Arizona auction catered to a variety of collector tastes and budgets. Additional stand out lots include a 1965 Jaguar E-Type Series 1 4.2-Litre Roadster, striking in Opalescent Dark Blue, which exceeded pre-sale expectations at $308,000, while a 1938 Mercedes-Benz 200 V Sport Roadster, offered from the Jules Barsotti Collection, far-surpassed its pre-sale estimate of $50,000 – $70,000 at a final $176,000.
RM Sotheby’s Arizona 2017 – Top Ten Auction Results
1939 Mercedes-Benz 540 K Special Roadster (Chassis 408383) – $6,600,000
1969 Ferrari 365 GTS (Chassis 12489) – $3,602,500
1995 Ferrari F50 (Chassis ZFFTG46A6S0104092) – $3,135,000
1961 Ferrari 400 Superamerica SWB Coupe Aerodinamico (Chassis NO. 2841 SA) – $3,080,000
2003 Ferrari Enzo (Chassis ZFFCW56A330133026) – $2,695,000
1967 Ferrari 330 GTS (Chassis 10689) – $2,475,000
1966 Ferrari 275 GTB/6C (Chassis 08431) – $2,117,500
2013 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport 300 (Chassis VF9SG2C27DM795300) – $2,090,000
RM Sotheby’s focus now turns to France, where the company kicks off its 2017 European calendar with its annual Paris sale, 8 February during the Rétromobile week. Held at Place Vauban immediately after Festival Automobile International, this sale will present 78 vehicles, all of which can be viewed in the digital catalog.
RM Sotheby’s continues its 2017 North American calendar in Amelia Island, Florida, 10-11 March. The official auction of the Amelia Island Concours, RM’s Ritz-Carlton sale has been extended to two days this year with the addition of ‘A Gentleman’s Collection: The Pride and Passion of Orin Smith’. A group of Rolls-Royces, Bentleys and other sporting icons, the Smith collection will be offered largely without reserve during an exclusive evening sale on 10 March, ahead of RM’s traditional Amelia Island day auction on 11 March.
Further information on upcoming events, along with complete results from RM Sotheby’s Arizona sale, can be found at www.rmsothebys.com.