The Market


RM Sotheby’s in St Moritz – BMW 507 comes out top on the night

RM Sotheby’s in St Moritz – BMW 507 comes out top on the night 18th September 2021

RM’s first foray to the rarefied Alpine air of St Moritz resulted in a likely CHF 15.5m+ gross, with 70% of the 23-car catalogue selling on the night. A BMW 507 and low-mileage Porsche 959 were two of the highlights.

The matching numbers, original colour (Papyros, an off-white) 1958 BMW 507 Roadster Series II topped the sale, achieving just over CHF 2.1m all in, say $2.33m.

At a glance:
* Gross, motor cars: CHF 16,302,625
* Percentage sold by number: 74%
* Top-selling car: 1958 BMW 507 Roadster Series II CHF 2,142,500 gross, CHF 1,900,000 net (est. CHF 2m – CHF 2.2m)
* Well sold? Good news for the Aston Martin market. A One-77 with just 1,009km recorded, an all-important EU Certificate of Conformity and Swiss Carte Grise sold over upper estimate for CHF 1,720,625 gross
* Well bought? The small catalogue was well gauged: if an entry found a buyer, it was at, or just under, low estimate; there were few bargains to be had

With extra costs of export out of the country, Swiss auctions best suit buyers and sellers based in the country; careful reading of the catalogue and pre-auction advice is essential. So the prices achieved generally reflect what’s happening locally, rather the market as a whole.

An eagerly anticipated entry was the Wine Red/Burgundy leather Porsche 959 thought first delivered to the Qatari royal family (pictured, top). A Porsche Exclusive commission, the car’s odometer showed only 961km. This, plus CHF 130k recommissioning in recent years at Porsche Centre Geneva, attracted the bidders.. Against a pre-sale estimate of CHF 1.5m to CHF 1.7m, it sold for CHF 1,750,000 net/CHF 1,973,750 gross (around $2.15m). To this must be added VAT and import duties if registered in Switzerland, and we refer you to our comments above if registering a car subject to a purchase transaction in Switzerland elsewhere in Europe.

The non-original-colour 1971 Ferrari Dino 246 GT nonetheless raised a handy CHF 336,875 gross, say $367k. The 599 Aperta did not sell on the night.

After this sale, and Bonhams’ successes at Bonmont, expect to see further Swiss classic car auctions by the leading players in Europe.

RM Sotheby’s in St Moritz, 17 September 2021 – results

Total gross cars: CHF 16,302,625
Number of cars not sold: 7
Number of cars withdrawn: 0
Total number of cars: 23
Number sold: 16
Percentage cars sold by number: 74%
Percentage by value average low/high estimate: 72%
Percentage of cars sold below low estimate: 65%
Percentage of cars sold not met avge of estimates: 82%
Percentage of cars sold met/exceeded top estimate: 12%
Average value of cars sold: CHF 958,978
Average year of cars offered: 1989
Percentage of cars offered at No Reserve: 9%

Photo by RM Sotheby’s