RM Sotheby’s, Portola Hotel and Monterey Convention Center, Monterey, California, August 14-15, 2015
RM Sotheby’s Pinnacle Portfolio session on Thursday where 23 of 25 cars offered sold for $75,192,500 sucked a good bit of the air out of the Monterey auction rooms, not only for the other Monterey auctions but also for RM Sotheby’s regular two-day sale on Friday and Saturday. (See Pinnacle Portfolio Report).
While Pinnacle’s Ferrari 250LM s/n 6105 posted the Monterey auction week’s highest transaction at $17,600,000, RM Sotheby’s two-day sale saw two lots ring up eight-figure prices, the Jaguar C-type s/n XKC 052 and Ferrari 250 GT Tour de France s/n 0557GT, both at $13,200,000 including buyer’s premium.
The 2-day RM Sotheby’s sale total of $91,845,500 was, however, the lowest since 2011 and the whole comparison is made even more difficult by RM Sotheby’s decision to withhold the prices of three cars sold after they crossed the block. They were:
• Lot 215, Ferrari 250 GT Boano Coupe s/n 0667 GT bid to $960,000 on the block;
• Lot 230, Ferrari 330 GTS s/n 9781 bid to $2,250,000 on the block; and
• Lot 242, Ferrari 250 GT/L Lusso s/n 5607 GT bid to $2,000,000 on the block.
RM Sotheby’s did announce a three-day sale total of $172,900,000 and a bit of subtraction shows that the three undisclosed price lots had aggregate prices of $5,592,000 including commissions. Hammer bids on these three lots were $5,210,000 which would have been $5,721,000 with the regular 10% buyer’s premium added, some $129,000 more than the amount indicated in RM Sotheby’s 3-day total.
The Friday-Saturday sale percentage of 84.8% [including the three undisclosed price cars as sold] is also less than any RM Monterey auction since 2011’s 84.25%.
All that does little or nothing to diminish the appeal of the cars RM Sotheby’s offered at Monterey. Looking at the transactions in terms of cars’ ages and quality also shows that some of the older, quality cars in exceptional condition and having notable histories were, relative to Ferraris, Porsches and the Pinnacle Portfolio supercars, great values.
Like the 4 1/2 Liter Blower Bentley lot 342. Sold for $4,015,000 with commission. It is a car welcomed anywhere not only on account of its configuration but also because it is likely the correct, original chassis, engine, supercharger and gearbox as-built by Bentley in 1931, a nearly impossibly rare surviving combination.
The RM Sotheby’s 3-day Monterey auction was far and away the most successful ever in Monterey, with memorable transactions both large and small[ish]. Whether it’s $167,308,000 or $172,900,000 this was a milestone auction.