The Market


Bonhams’ £4m May 2021 Bond St sale

Bonhams’ £4m May 2021 Bond St sale 20th May 2021

Of the small, 26-car catalogue that included no fewer than 10 Aston Martins, Bonhams sold nearly 90% by number yesterday, grossing £4,082,925.

Most of the Astons offered at the company’s London HQ were from the familiar Middle East source. For existing owners concerned at the prices realised, we can only list our usual points to bear in mind when this subject comes up: taxes and duty payable, condition, paperwork and history. Speaking to K500, a marque expert with decades’ experience selling Astons explained:

“Take the DB6 Volante. It needed a proper restoration. So, what’s that today, £300k? A manual car from new and nice colours of black/black, but a gaping hole in the history file. The ‘cheap’ V8 Vantage [£129,375 gross] is an original LHD car but one supplied to Middle East export specification for a client in Saudi Arabia. It’s an auto converted to manual, subject to 5% import duty should it remain in the UK, been in the US for a while and in storage since 2010. Having an Aston record card is all very well – what’s happened to it over 40 years?

“You can restore a car back to any condition. You cannot rewrite its history – or lack of, which is the issue with most of these cars.”

At a glance:

* Gross: £4,082,925
* Percentage sold by number: 88%
* Top-selling car: 1968 Aston Martin DB6 Volante £425,500 gross, £370,000 net (est. £400k to £500k)        
* Well sold? £287,500 all-in for the Zephyr ’six-engine 1961 AC Ace wasn’t bad; everyone wants an Ace-Bristol
* Well bought? We like pre-War Astons, and the 1930 International 'Short Chassis' 2/4, though needing work, seems a reasonable buy for £126,500 gross

The declared gross would have been greater still had the Bond St firm revealed the selling prices of the Lightweight E-type replica and De Tomaso Pantera. The 1962 Lancia Flaminia Sport 3C 2.5- Zagato sold below low estimate for £281,750 incl. premium.

The sale was conducted by the UK team ‘live’ in London while the North American division prepared for its delayed, 112-car Amelia Island auction to be run the day after. Exactly half will be sold without reserve. The average year of car is 1944, the oldest since the Brits came to Florida in 2015.

Bonhams in Bond St, 19 May 2021 – results

Total gross cars: £4,082,925
Number of cars not sold: 3
Number of cars withdrawn: 0
Total number of cars: 26 (38% Aston Martin)
Number sold: 23
Percentage cars sold by number: 88%
Percentage by value average low/high estimate: 75%
Percentage of cars sold below low estimate: 52%
Percentage of cars sold not met avge of estimates: 65%
Percentage of cars sold met/exceeded top estimate: 22%
Average value of cars sold: £177,518
Average year of cars offered: 1960
Percentage of cars offered at No Reserve: 31%

Photo by Paul Hardiman