Low-key results for RM at 2021 Guikas Collection sale
Despite grossing just over €39m, the six-and-a-half-hour marathon disposal of 77 cars belonging to dealer/collector Jean Guikas turned into something of a disappointment earlier this evening. Nearly two thirds of the catalogue – all offered without reserve – sold below low estimate.
Some figures achieved, such as for the works Renault-Alpine Le Mans car, were around half the guide price, though most felt that, given the 'untouched' condition of many entries, the pre-sale values in the catalogue were as much as 10-15 per cent too high.
Although a small (100+) number of potential buyers made the trip in person, much of the bidding was over the telephones or via the internet. The location, Circuit Paul Ricard, was an hour’s drive from Marseille airport.
Proceedings started at 12.00pm local time (6.00am in New York) and finished at 7.30pm (9.30am in California). While some visitors from North America made the journey, these timings, late in the year, were not ideal. Regular RM European sale auctioneer Filippo Lotti conducted the event at a languid pace; a marked difference to Harry Dalmeny’s fireworks in London earlier this month.
The Guikas cars were functioning, and many were driven out onto the circuit when up for sale. Most had been bought at auction (often RM) and put into storage, so it could not be described as the collection of a wealthy private enthusiast who had invested much time and money with a Paul Russell, Bonini or Cremonini. And several, such as the top-selling Ferrari, were registered in the UK, thus requiring additional fees and paperwork to export to the European Union.
At a glance:
* Gross, motor cars: €39,161,901 (ca. $44.4m)
* Percentage sold by number: 100%
* Top-selling car: 1955 Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Competizione €6,192,500 gross, €5,500,000 net (est. €7m to €9m)
* Well sold? In a thin afternoon for stand-out results, perhaps the Argento over Rosso leather 1986 Ferrari Testarossa monospecchio that achieved €286,250 all-in (est. €110k to €150k). Good, original colours make all the difference
* Well bought? Many entries were ‘niche’, and hard to value, but the 1976 Renault-Alpine A442 that just might turn out to be the actual winner of the 1978 Le Mans 24 Hours sold for €2,255,000 with premium against its pre-sale guide of €4m to €5m.
Other notable sales (all prices gross):
1969 Alfa Romeo 1750 Spider Veloce, est. €40k to €60k. Red, late-production big-engined Veloce (one of around only 2,800) that sold well for €82,800.
1993 Jaguar XJ220 C LM, est. €1m to €1.4m. Genuine ex-Le Mans car bought on the money for €826,250.
1965 Iso Grifo A3/C, est. €1.5m to €2m. Ex-Johnny Hallyday, the subject of a fierce bidding battle, finally going to a Swiss collector over the phone for €1,805,000.
1958 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet Series I, est. €5.5m to €7m. Non-original exterior colour; not sold at Artcurial’s 2018 Paris Rétromobile sale. An all-encompassing estimate, but probably well bought for €4,420,625.
1970 Maserati Ghibli 4.7 Spyder, est. €650k to €750k. LHD, genuine manual European car but with less-desirable smaller engine. Matching numbers, non-original colours (was yellow) and sold for €646,250 (say $730k).
1974 Ferrari 365 GT4 BB, est. €275k to €350k. Silver, another popular entry, and sold well for €353,750.
1965 Ferrari 275 GTB, est. €2.4m to €2.8m. Nice early French history – sold to Count Fréderic Chandon de Brialles of Moët & Chandon – modified for racing in period and further prepared for modern events. Achieved €2,142,500, probably the right price in today’s market and no Shell Historic Ferrari Maserati Challenge to race in.
1975 Lamborghini Countach LP400 'Periscopica', est. €750k to €900k. Was originally red, first delivered to Milan but then spent much of its life in the US with no recent specialist work in its home country. Something of a ‘model of the moment’, it sold strongly for €905,000 (around $1m).
1968 Ferrari Dino 206 GT, est. €475k to €550k. Another bullish estimate for an only average car albeit one with 37 years' history in single ownership and presented in original and desirable Rosso Dino. Sold for €477,500.
2007 Aston Martin DBRS9, est. €350k to €450k. Sold for €195,500. With only minor period racing history, it was one of the bargains of the afternoon.
1981 Ferrari 512 BBLM, est. €2.25m to €3m. The oddball, ex-Violati ‘droop snoot’ BBLM now with Ferrari Classiche papers. Not the most attractive or successful BBLM in period, and in ‘as-raced’ condition, for those interested in the 2022 Le Mans Classic, €1,973,750 bought someone a shoo-in entry. Just watch the preparation bills…
2005 Ferrari 575 GTC, est. €3m to €4m. Another car with low-key national racing history and not a more desirable Prodrive-built 550. Sold for €2,648,750 – perhaps one for the future.
Could local outfit Artcurial have done better? With much ballyhoo and a giant Tricolore fluttering in the background, possibly. Surely the 1967 Holman-Moody Ford Honker II (sold for €252,500) would have been a million-dollar car at Pebble? No Reserve is a gamble – unless the stars are aligned, it does not always pay off.
RM Sotheby’s Guikas Collection at Circuit Paul Ricard, 19 November 2021 – results
Total gross cars: €39,161,901
Number of cars not sold: 0
Number of cars withdrawn: 0
Total number of cars: 77
Number sold: 77
Percentage cars sold by number: 100%
Percentage by value average low/high estimate: 68%
Percentage of cars sold below low estimate: 64%
Percentage of cars sold not met avge of estimates: 83%
Percentage of cars sold met/exceeded top estimate: 10%
Average value of cars sold: €508,596
Average year of cars offered: 1976
Percentage of cars offered at No Reserve: 100%
Photos by K500