The Market


Clean sweep for Gooding on day one at Amelia Island

Clean sweep for Gooding on day one at Amelia Island 2nd March 2023

The Californians conducted the first part of their bumper two-day 2023 Amelia Island auction this afternoon. Every car found a new home and the event grossed in excess of $19m.

Many entries were already listed at No Reserve, but clearly intense discussions had been had with vendors that meant that the rest of the catalogue could be cut loose sometimes way below low estimate. For example, the 1949 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Super Sport Cabriolet, est. $550k to $650k, was hammered away for $390k net, or $434k with premium.

The cry of “The car is in the market!” came from the rostrum on many occasions indicating there might be a bargain to be had. Regular British auctioneer Charlie Ross was restored to the controls having missed Pebble Beach last year and once again proved he is the class of the field.

“I’d like to start at $2m.” Little response from the saleroom. “Nobody else would. Who will bid me $1m?’. That was on the top-selling Ferrari 250 MM Spider that subsequently went for $3.525m gross, $3.12m net. “I knew we’d get there.”

At a glance:
* Gross, motor cars: $19,429,608
* Percentage sold by number: 100%
* Top-selling car: 1953 Ferrari 250 MM Spider Series II $3,525,000, $3,200,000 net (est. $3m to $5m)

The US-specification, 1,236-mile F40 generated “bids all over the place” and sold for $3,085,000 gross, probably a market-realistic figure after the big growth in values last year.

The 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL ‘Gullwing was bought wisely. Catalogued as a matching-numbers car with original Rudge wheels, it sold just above low estimate for $1,737,500 all-in. ‘Safe silver’ with blue Tartan (as delivered) is no bad thing, and the car comes with a set of Karl Baisch fitted luggage. It had been used on mild US rally tours and had a race-prepped motor by rated firm Ed Pink.

Other results of note (all prices gross):

* 1958 Porsche 356 A Speedster, $280,000. Attractive late Speedster in rare Fjord Green. Non-matching engine not unusual in these cars.
* 1971 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 'Daytona', $599,000. Fair price for an inevitably red US car that should go back to Marrone Metallizzato.
* 1958 BMW 507 Series II, $1,820,000. Ross had a bid on the books for $1.6m. It sold in the room for $1.65m.
* 1976 Ferrari 308 GTB Vetroresina, $235,200. Sensational, $200k restoration by marque experts including Motion Products.
* 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB, $2,040,000. Interesting history in Italy as a Rosso Rubino car spoilt by old-school ‘resale red’ restoration in US in late 1980s.
* 1995 Ferrari F512 M, $731,000. Proof that there is still air in the balloon for these cars.

The action continues on Friday 3 March with a further 100 classics set to cross the block including a Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider (above). David Gooding's team certainly got off to a flying start.

Photos by Marcelo Murillo for K500