Auction Preview: Barrett-Jackson Palm Beach 2016
On April 8-10, Barrett-Jackson will hold its 14th annual Palm Beach sale at the South Florida Fairgrounds in West Palm Beach, Florida. Last year’s $22 million made for the most successful Palm Beach auction to date, and 2016’s docket features a number of high profile cars. As you would expect, there are tons of American muscle cars, but there also some notable European classics and modern exotics, including some vintage Ferraris and two Porsche Carrera GTs. Here are five lots that we’ll be keeping an eye on.
The T-Bird had a long, illustrious production run during which it came in several shapes and sizes and featured numerous different powertrains. Many people feel that Ford got it right the first time, though, so the early “Baby Birds” are particularly popular classics and the version at the top of most wish lists is the F-Code Thunderbird with its Paxton McCulloch supercharged 312/300hp V-8. Only about 200 Thunderbirds were so equipped, and there were over 50,000 first generation Thunderbirds built in total. Barrett-Jackson’s example is a restored show car in Flame Red with power steering and brakes, memory seats, power windows, Town & Country radio, tinted glass and porthole hard top. It ticks all the right boxes for Ford folks.
330 GTCs have gained a following over the last few years, with values sharply rising along with other Enzo-era front-engined V-12 Ferraris and as people come to appreciate their blend of comfort and speed under Pininfarina bodywork that’s more graceful than the four-seater versions of the 330. Several 330 GTCs have come to auction over the past couple of years, with the best of them bringing about a million dollars. Barrett-Jackson’s example, one of about 600 GTCs built, is an Italian market car with factory air conditioning. It has never been fully restored and wears a non-original paint color, so it is unlikely to command top dollar. It’s been extensively serviced, however, and looks eminently usable. RM sold this very car in 2014 for £392,000 (about $630,000).
Like-new Ford GTs have become a staple for companies like Barrett-Jackson or Mecum, who always seem to have at least one or two featured at every one of their sales. Barrett-Jackson’s example has all the wrappers and books and stickers that one would expect to find on a factory fresh car, and it reportedly has less than five miles on the odometer. Last year, Auctions America sold another Heritage Edition in Fort Lauderdale with 2.7 miles on the clock for $451,000, so this one from Barrett-Jackson will be a good indicator of the GT market.
1957 Ford Skyliner F-Code
Hagerty Price Guide: N/A
The F-Code T-Bird is certainly rare, but an F-Code Skyliner takes rare to a different level. Only seven Fairlane 500s were equipped with both the retractable hard top and the supercharged F-Code engine. Barrett-Jackson’s example is also lavishly equipped with dual spotlights, Town & Country radio, Continental kit, exhaust deflectors, tissue dispenser and power windows, steering, brakes and seats. Despite all its luxury equipment, the car was drag raced in period with class championship wins in 1957 and ’58. It has since been concours restored.
While this car won’t be the most expensive or significant car in Palm Beach, it’s just plain cool and something that just about any BMW fan can fall in love with. An extensive, tasteful resto-mod, it has an M10 engine with raised compression, dual Weber carbs, a custom intake, high-flow header and stainless exhaust, and the gearbox has been replaced with a Getrag 5-speed from a later 3-Series. The car also features Koni shocks, stiffer springs, thicker sway bars, beefier brakes and BBS three-piece honeycomb wheels. The build and the car have been featured in numerous magazines, and it is one of Barrett-Jackson’s featured charity lots.