Worldwide Houston Classic 2013 – Auction Report

Report and photos by Rick Carey, Auction Editor

Worldwide pulled out all the stops for the second iteration of their Houston Classic auction May 4, 2013 at the La Torretta Lake Resort & Spa in Montgomery, Texas, assembling an exceptional collection of cars.

Over half, 67 of 113, were offered without reserve including three that hammered sold at six figure bids.

There were several stars and, depending upon your definition of ‘star’, four out of five went home with new owners including the first production Nash-Healey, Shelby Cobra 427, Pierce-Arrow coupe and a marvelous Austro-Daimler from the LeMay collection. Only ‘Goldie’, the Austin-Healey 100/6 gold plated show car, failed to find a new owner.

The auction was enlivened by the participation of the “Fast ‘n’ Loud” crowd including their ubiquitous Discovery Channel camera crews. It’s been enlightening to see the evolution of “Fast ‘n’ Loud” as their cars have progressed from quickie fluff jobs (with paint that still smells) to first class restorations and quality collector cars. The Houston Classic weekend saw the first appearance during Friday’s tour of their rescued-from-a-crumpled-pile-of-fiberglass-shards-and-twisted-metal Ferrari F40, an amazing resurrection that ran, drove, sounded great and completed the Tour.

Festivities continued on Sunday with the Concours d’Elegance of Texas on the La Torretta golf course, an event that like Saturday’s auction is getting better, bigger and more diverse.

Worldwide Houston
Cars Offered / Sold
Sale %
Sold < Low Est.
Sold > High Est.
Average Sale
Median Sale
Total Sales
2013
113 / 101
89.4%
78.8%
3%
$71,530
$45,100 [63.1%]
$7,224,510
2012
121 /101
83.5%
76.3%
1%
$65,170
$46,200 [70.9%]
$6,582,210

Throughout the day the auction room was full and bidding rarely slackened.

Sunday was Cinco de Mayo and fortuitously there’s probably no better place to celebrate Mexican history and tradition than in the Houston area. 7 Leguas (named for Pancho Villa’s horse) restaurant out on Highway 105 beckoned after the Concours and it turned out to be exactly what the dining doctor ordered. Nothing fancy (except the strolling mariachi band in honor of the day), just good food and plenty of it.

It was an upbeat weekend with the casual, friendly atmosphere of a group of similarly-minded enthusiasts gathered to enjoy their passion, trade a few cars and admire those they couldn’t own. When the hype ends and the fever recedes, that is all anyone – consignor, bidder, buyer or onlooker – can ask.

Worldwide Houston Classic 2013 – Auction Report

1955 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup
Lot # 2 1955 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup; S/N 0056143F55X; Teal Green, White roof/Green, White leatherette; Estimate $20,000 – $30,000; Truck restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $32,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $35,200. No Reserve – Powerglide, turn signals, radio, oak bed floor, stainless strips, oak sideboards, single bed-side spare, hubcaps, trim rings, whitewalls, chrome bumpers, 5-window cab — A high quality restoration to nearly like new condition. Excellent paint, chrome and interior. — A first series 1955 Chevy restored to unusually good standards for a truck, the lack of a V-8 doesn’t handicap this truck much if at all and is insignificant to its value when compared with the very nice restoration and the 5-window cab. This result is fair to both the buyer and the seller.
1960 Chrysler 300F Convertible Conversion
Lot # 3 1960 Chrysler 300F Convertible Conversion; S/N 8403155523; Strawberry metallic/Beige leather; White vinyl top; Estimate $80,000 – $110,000; Older restoration, 2+ condition; Hammered Sold at $65,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $71,500. No Reserve – 413/375hp, automatic and everything else except A/C. — A handsome older show quality restoration and conversion from hardtop to convertible that shows some age and use on the interior but has been extensively detailed under its hood. — This is one heck of a handsome color combination and the long ram intake under the hood is always marvelous to behold, even if the hardtop got lost along the way and replaced with folding vinyl. It sold at Auburn Fall in 1998 fresh from the restoration/conversion for $63,000 and shows some of its age but it still entirely reasonably priced at this result although the estimate range is a pipe dream.
1968 Shelby Mustang GT500KR Convertible
Lot # 4 1968 Shelby Mustang GT500KR Convertible; S/N 8T03R215916-04146; Wimbledon White/Black vinyl; Black vinyl top; Estimate $150,000 – $200,000; Older restoration, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $122,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $134,750. No Reserve – 428/335hp, 4-speed, 3.50 Traction-Lock, cassette stereo, 10-spoke alloy wheels, Goodyear Speedway tires, P/S, P/B — Restored like new a while ago, well-maintained and orderly but no longer fresh. Represented as numbers matching and documented with a Marti Report and the original build sheet — This KR has a good combination of options, particularly the 4-speed which so many KRs lack. Let’s say the restoration has ‘mellowed’ since it was completed a while ago and someone has gotten some value out of the KR’s performance. This is a very reasonable price for a KR convertible with this equipment and in this condition.
1970 Shelby Mustang GT500 Fastback
Lot # 6 1970 Shelby Mustang GT500 Fastback; S/N 0F02R482429; Pastel Grey, Blue side stripes, Black hood stripes/Black vinyl; Estimate $140,000 – $170,000; Unrestored original, 2- condition; Hammered Sold at $102,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $112,750. No Reserve – 428/335hp, 4-speed, Hurst shifter, Drag Pack 3.91 Traction Lock, pushbutton radio, console gauges, sport minors, 5-spoke alloy center chrome rim wheels, Polyglas GT tires, P/S, P/B, underbumper fog lights — Partially repainted but otherwise original with 7,843 miles. Highly detailed underhood, very clean and nearly like new. — A rare car, one of 104 SCJ Drag Pack GT500s built — a sleeper KR — this one is beautifully maintained and original, with an impressive detailing job done to return it to nearly showroom condition. The new owner got a great value for the money, a GT500 to be proud of while being secure in the knowledge it is a sound investment.
1961 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible
Lot # 14 1961 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible; S/N 10867S105928; Red, White coves/Red; White vinyl top; Estimate $50,000 – $60,000; Older restoration, 3 condition; Hammered Sold at $45,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $49,500. No Reserve – 283/245hp, 4-speed, WonderBar radio, spinner wheel covers, whitewall radials — Good paint, chrome, interior and top. A sound, presentable old restoration that has been well cared for. — Sold at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale in 2003 in comparable condition while showing 43 fewer miles on the odometer for $43,200, this mediocre Corvette brought an appropriate price today for what it is.
1969 Mercury Cougar Eliminator Coupe
Lot # 15 1969 Mercury Cougar Eliminator Coupe; S/N 9F91R563012; Competition Orange/Black vinyl; Estimate $65,000 – $75,000; Older restoration, 2- condition; Post-block sale at $44,545 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $49,000. – 428/335hp, Ram Air hood and air cleaner, automatic, P/S, P/B, A/C, P/W, rally wheels with trim rings, Polyglas tires — A quality older restoration with good cosmetics. Now looks like a good old used car, and a very fast one at that. Documented with Marti Report, original build sheet, window sticker and owner history from new, represented as numbers-matching. One of 304 built with this engine/transmission combination out of a total of only 2,250 Cougar Eliminators built. — Cougar Eliminators are very rare. This was an excellent opportunity to add a rarely seen marque and model to a Pony Car collection, and at this price it is a very good value.
1966 Porsche 911S Coupe
Lot # 21 1966 Porsche 911S Coupe; S/N 307637S; Red, Yellow stripe/Black Alcantara, vinyl; Estimate $90,000 – $120,000; Modified for competition during restoration 3- condition; Hammered Sold at $54,000 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $59,400. – Black Fuchs wheels, Hoosier DOT slicks, Terratrip computer, two seats, full roll cage and race prepared — Aged and used but orderly. Built for the 2003 La Carrera Panamericana, class winner, 9th overall. Includes original engine (in pieces). Subsequently vintage raced, but not recently as the adventuresome driver became preoccupied with television stardom. — While this 1966 911S is reasonably priced it has many needs no matter if it’s continued in vintage racing after a considerable period of dormancy or reverts to restored original condition. Those needs are reflected in the price it brought, not in the auction’s pre-sale estimate.
1966 Jaguar XKE SI 4.2 Roadster
Lot # 24 1966 Jaguar XKE SI 4.2 Roadster; S/N 1E12049; Red/Black leather; Black vinyl top; Estimate $110,000 – $130,000; Cosmetic restoration, 3- condition; Hammered Sold at $77,500 plus commission of 10.00%; Final Price $85,250. – Chrome wire wheels, Dunlop radial tires, Craig AM-FM — Cosmetically restored to presentable driver condition. Decent paint, some weak chrome trim, good interior shows some wear and use. A Jag the new owner can enjoy and improve. — This Jag was reported sold at Auctions America’s Ft. Lauderdale auction fourteen months ago for $51,700 in essentially the same condition as it was offered here and with 12 fewer miles on the odometer. That’s a $20,000 bump in 14 months with zero expenditures apparent on the car. The new owner here paid full retail for the car and the seller showed the validity of the observation, ‘You make your money when you buy the car.’