The Market


Bonhams scrapes over the line in Miami with $7.27m sale

Bonhams scrapes over the line in Miami with $7.27m sale 5th May 2024

The Brits came to the glossy Miami F1 race with a 23-car catalogue as official car auction partner. Adding up the pre-sale guide prices, the mid-estimate total came to $24.7m. The morning after, only around half the cars had found new owners, all but two were sold below low estimate and the gross was $7,272,160, greatly helped by a single car selling for $2.3m.

The celebrity rappers, sports stars and influencers who flock to Miami for the Grand Prix as guests of the teams probably have a word for that – one that few over 40 would understand, and it won't be complimentary.

At a glance:
* Gross, motor cars: $7,272,160
* Percentage sold by number, motor cars: 52%
* Top-selling car: 2011 Ferrari SP30 Berlinetta $2,296,000 gross, $2,050,000 net (est. $2.25m to $2.5m, pictured, top)        

Top spot went to the one-off 2011 Ferrari SP30 Berlinetta, a Ferrari Special Projects car based on a 599 GTO. Its history is a comment on latter-day modern car buying and collecting:

“The commission initially came from an Indian industrialist based in the United Arab Emirates, but not long after taking delivery, he fell afoul with local officials over a massive financial default, allowing the SP30's seizure. After liquidation, the car came to the USA and is now offered with a US title.”

Eat your heart out Alain Delon, the Marzotto brothers, Col. Ronnie Hoare, Gianni Agnelli, Brigitte Bardot and Françoise Hardy.

 “Fishes out of water” sums up the inclusion of an ex-1939 Le Mans 24 Hours BMW 328 and 1955 Lancia Aurelia B24S Spider America. Neither sold.

A couple of older cars did find buyers, the 1965 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III Drophead Coupé for $313,600 (est. $300k to $400k), and the ‘showroom silver’ 300 SL Gullwing for $1,624,000. The latter, in at $1.5m to $1.75m, carried a replacement engine from a Roadster, modern air-conditioning and a Nardi steering wheel. Originally DB50 Weiss when delivered to the US, the now-silver car sold well in the circumstances. The 300 SL had once been owned by North American car collecting royalty. “Sam and Emily Mann, didn’t they duet with P. Diddy?”

The No Reserve 1996 Heuliez Intruder Convertible – a “G-Wagen chassis meets sportscar, meets Tonka Toy", the catalogue description, not ours – set some sort of record achieving $72,800 against a pre-sale estimate of $250k to $300k.

All prices with buyer’s premium.

Bonhams at the Miami Grand Prix, 4 May 2024 – results

Gross: $7,272,160
Number of cars not sold: 11
Number of cars withdrawn: 0
Total number of cars: 23
Number sold: 12
Percentage cars sold by number: 52%
Percentage by value average low/high estimate: 26%
Percentage of cars met or sold below low estimate: 83%
Percentage of cars sold below avge of estimates: 100%
Percentage of cars sold met/exceeded top estimate: 0%
Average year of cars offered: 1997
Average price of cars sold: $606,013
Percentage of cars offered at No Reserve: 26%

Photo by Bonhams