Auction Recap: Mecum Denver 2016

Mecum concluded their second annual Denver auction on July 9 with $9,392,075 in total sales. 323 vehicles sold out of the 481 offered for a sell-through rate of 67 percent, and the average price was a fairly low $29,078. Last year’s Denver sale had a higher total at over $11.5 million, but over 130 more vehicles were offered and the sell-through rate was lower last year at 63 percent.

That difference in total sales can largely be attributed to the fact that last year was an anticipated inaugural sale and that this year many of the more valuable cars on offer didn’t meet their reserves. A 1985 DeTomaso Pantera GT5-S and a 2012 Ferrari FF each hammered not sold at high bids of $175,000, while a 2006 Ford GT Heritage Edition and a 1992 Ferrari 512 TR were each bid to $240,000 but went unsold.

This year’s top sale, which actually would have been only sixth-highest at last year’s sale, was a 1963 Ford Galaxie 500XL with the triple-deuce, 427/425hp R-Code engine that sold for $170,500, a huge result for the model. Second highest was a restored 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Split Window Coupe at $154,000, relatively cheap for a car equipped with the fuel-injected L84 engine. Another one of the top sales that was downright cheap in today’s market was a 1986 Porsche 930 Coupe for $88,000. Other bargains included a 1980 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am Turbo with ugly custom wheels helping to limit the price to just $11,000 and a neat Volkswagen-based Bradley GT kit car for $5,500. Two early 1990s Corvettes also showed very tempting value, with a recently serviced 1991 ZR-1 fetching just $13,750 and a rare  ’91 Callaway twin-turbo coupe, bought new by a pro tennis player in England, also at just $13,750.

Overall top 10:

1. 1963 Ford Galaxie 500XL R-Code sold for $170,500
2. 1963 Chevrolet Corvette 327/360hp Split Window Coupe sold for $154,000
3. 1957 Chevrolet Corvette Resto Mod sold for $148,500
4. 1967 Chevrolet Corvette 427/400hp Convertible sold for $150,000
5. 1970 Buick GSX Stage 1 sold for $126,500
6. 1966 Chevrolet Corvette Resto Mod sold for $126,500
7. 1967 Shelby GT500 Fastback sold for $88,000
8. 1986 Porsche 930 Turbo Coupe sold for $88,000
9. 1965 Chevrolet Corvette 327/300hp Convertible sold for $79,200
10. 1970 Pontiac GTO Judge sold for $73,700

Mecum’s next collector car auction will be the Harrisburg, Pa., auction on July 21-23, 2016. Notable lots include a 1970 Ford Mustang Boss 429, a 1970 Mercury Cougar Boss 302 Eliminator and a 1968 Shelby GT500 Fastback.

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