20 February 2012

Bonhams' Retromobile results

The European auction season began earlier this month in conjunction with Retromobile festivities. Bonhams held its annual Paris auction at La Halle Freyssinet on February 2, 2012, followed the next day by Artcurial.

Bonhams’ sale was not as large in terms of dollar volume as last year, as 77 of 134 lots (34 of which were motorcycles) traded for just under $9.0m. This compares to results of $14.1m and $8.4m for 2011 and 2010, respectively.

Though the total sales were lower, the top car was not. A beautiful and well-documented 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT sold for $1.3m, which was in line with current prices. The car was well fettled, having been successfully and often campaigned in the Tour Auto during the past decade and should prove to be a good investment over the coming years.

Other top sales include a 1929 Bentley 6½ Le Mans-style tourer that had been upgraded to 8-Litre spec that sold for just under $785,000, and a 1966 Shelby Cobra (CSX3249) with a replacement 428-c.i. block that earned a price of $600,500.

As one might expect, several interesting French cars were on the docket, with a magnificent 1935 Delage D8-105S coupe selling for $410,000

Overall, prices were market-correct, though a 1968 Maserati Ghibli coupe landed $101,000, continuing the model’s strong performance so far this yearOn the flip side, a 1977 Alfa Romeo Montreal traded at a price of $41,000, which is slightly less than other recent sales.

Bonhams’ next automotive sale will occur in Oxford on March 3, 2012. That auction contains a series of Packards and postwar American models.

Brian Rabold is the editor of Hagerty Price Guide.

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