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RM Auction Update: I Hate When I’m Right

Posted in Car Auctions, Car Buying, Event Coverage by Kurt Ernst | March 18th, 2011 | 2 Responses |

1986 Ford RS200 Evolution. Image: RM Auctions

A few weeks back I told you about a 1986 Ford RS200 Evolution that was about to go up for sale at the RM Auctions event tied to the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. Pre-auction estimates for the unmolested (and remarkably low mileage) car were $80,000 to $120,000, and the car was being sold with no reserve (in other words, the seller hadn’t set a minimum price, and the car would go for whatever price the gavel fell on). Given the condition of the car, and the fact that it was an Evolution version, I doubted it would sell for a penny less than $150,000, and I was correct; when the auction ended, the car sold for $159,500, which actually translates to a hammer price of $143,550 plus a buyer’s premium of $15,950. I’m not sure the new buyer can flip the car for a profit in less than five years, but this much is certain: Ford isn’t building any more RS200 Evos, so I’d call that a good investment. More results below.

1952 Ferrari 340 Mexico Coupe. Image: RM Auctions

The star of the RM Auction was this 1952 Ferrari 340 Mexico Coupe, which sold for an impressive $4,290,000. That blew the pre-auction estimate of $2.75 million to $3.5 million out of the water, but the car came from the private collection of former GM designer and Ferrari Club of America co-founder Larry Nicklin. It was one of only three built, and it had an extensive racing history; that was enough to spark a bidding war between potential phone buyers and those in attendance.

2002 Cadillac Northstar LMP. Image: RM Auctions

Another auction highlight (for me, at least) was the 2002 Cadillac Northstar LeMans Prototype that sold for $209,000. Pre-auction estimates had the car at $200,000 to $300,000, which makes this sale a relative bargain for the new owner. This car is the only Northstar LMP in private hands, it has a genuine racing pedigree and was the second to last LMP built; in other words, it’s money in the bank for the new owner (as long as they don’t stack it in a vintage race).

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2 Responses

  1. J D Stadler says:

    Recession? What recession? $4.3 mil, jeeeesh!

    On a side note, now you know how much to beg, borrow, or steal the next time an RS200 comes around, right? heh

  2. Kurt Ernst says:

    It’s funny, but the recession really hasn’t touched the high end collector car market. Gooding & Co had a good auction, RM did well and even the Mecum Auction in Kissimmee had brisk sales. The Mecum auction in Kansas City, on the other hand, seemed to be masticating at the dorsal mammary gland; blue collar collectors, looking for drivers and not show winners, don’t have money to spend.