Elton John’s Continental Shift


So, as expected, the presale estimate of $25,000 to $35,000 that Christie’s placed on Elton John’s 1990 Bentley Continental was miles out. Bidding at the February 21st live auction in New York finished with a total price, including fees, of $441,000.

The car itself was cool, even without Elton’s stamp of approval. Black coachwork over black leather perfectly offset the silver alloy rims and a walnut dash. This two-door, 6758-cc convertible is also of the era that is just so “now.” Frankly, this car would have sold well whoever the owner was.

1990 Bentley Continental Elton John profile

But let’s not pretend that Elton John’s ownership didn’t make this an uber-collectible car. The singer is known for his love of cars, and he was especially passionate about this one, driving it regularly in California before having it shipped to Europe and using it there, describing it as his “Beloved” Continental and gushing over how wonderful it looked. It does indeed look wonderful, and this provenance gave it a massive boost when it hit the rostrum.

Hagerty tracks the value that celebrity ownership adds to cars through the annual Power List, and this will be the 18th sale of Elton’s cars that our valuation team has tracked (which, coincidentally, is the third highest number, behind just Steve McQueen and Paul Walker). The average increase of Elton John’s other cars over a standard equivalent has been 115 percent. This sale result was nearly five times the Hagerty price guide #2 (Excellent) value of $93,500. That’s a big number.

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    Goodbye, Yellow Brick Road. Why did he ever sell it, one wonders? If I loved a car as much as he said he loved this one, and had space and cash to maintain it, I would never sell it. Puzzling.

    One of the nicest cars ever but, sooo hard to maintain with that incredibly complex brake and suspension system, especially as it ages. Maybe it let him down too many times. Maybe he ordered the new Rolls Royce EV.

    I doubt the cost to maintain is a concern for someone with as deep pocket as Elton’s or the new owner who paid 400 large for it

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