Gooding & Company’s 1960 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Competizione was the top sale in September, hammered away for an above-estimate £7,762,500 at its London auction held during the Concours of Elegance in the grounds of Hampton Court Palace (estimate £6,000,000 – 7,000,000). The sale generated over £22 million, with a 79% sell-through rate, and established a new auction record for an Alfa Romeo TZ at £1,181,250 (estimate £1,000,000 – 1,200,000).
Bonhams ran a busy schedule with three sales in September, kicking off with its annual Beaulieu auction. Dominated by British machinery, it was headed by a US-delivered left-hand drive 1955 Aston Martin DB2/4 Drophead Coupe restoration project that smashed its £60,000 – 100,000 estimate at £172,500. A 1931 Rolls-Royce 20/25 hp 'Dreadnought Special' (£155,250) and a 1959 Aston Martin DB Mark III (£132,250) – another US left-hand drive car – in need of re-commissioning rounded out the top-three.
An ex-Bruce McLaren Cooper-Zerex Oldsmobile was the star performer at Bonhams’ Goodwood Revival sale a week later, going for £911,000. A multiple race winner in McLaren’s hands, it underwent seven different configurations during its racing career and only recently emerged from more than 50 years in storage, after being sold to a Venezuelan amateur racer in 1967. A brace of Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren 722 Editions made way over guide, both stored since new with minimal miles, the coupe fetched £631,000 (estimate £180,000 – 240,000) and the S Roadster took £679,166 (estimate £240,000 – 320,000).
Stateside, Bonhams’ Audrain Concours auction also delivered an above-estimate result for a barn find 1957 BMW 507 that boasted long-term storage and single-family ownership of more than 40 years. Sold for $2,315,000, the preserved and unrestored matching-numbers Series II had undergone a colour change, but retained its desirable Rudge wheels and original Blaupunkt Köln radio.
Christie’s celebrated 60 Years of James Bond with a 25-lot charity auction at its London HQ, where a packed saleroom and spirited bidding saw an Aston Martin DB5 Replica Stunt car sail past its £1,500,000 – 2,000,000 estimate, taking £2,922,000. One of eight built for Bond and the only example released for public sale, it featured a carbon fibre body over a space frame chassis with BMW power, and was one of the few used in No Time To Die with gadgets and mocked-up side panel damage. Other stand-out results included an Aston Martin V8, driven by Daniel Craig in the same film, at £630,000 (estimate £500,000 – 700,000), while the Omega Seamaster 300M 007 Edition watch, worn by Craig in the film and conservatively estimated at £15,000 – 20,000, made a whopping £226,800.
A time-warp two-owner 1964 Morris Mini Cooper 1071 S crossed the block at Classic Car Auctions’ September sale after some 30 years in storage, selling for £52,875 (estimate £28,000 – 32,000). Originally purchased new by a BMC employee, the car passed to the consignor in 1966 and showed a believed-genuine 39,144 miles.
RM Sotheby’s marathon three-day sale of the no-reserve Gene Ponder Collection realised $24.3 million with 126 cars among more than 1,100 lots on offer. Ponder’s 1960 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster drew the highest bids, changing hands for $1,595,000 (estimate $1,700,000 – 1,900,000), followed by a 1938 Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic Recreation that had been built in the 1990s by Erik Koux using a Type 57 chassis, selling for $1,155,000 (estimate $1,400,000 – 1,800,000).
Aston Martin’s One-77 is a rare sight at auction, the latest example finding its way to RM Sotheby’s St. Moritz sale where it raised CHF1,825,000 (estimate CHF1,800,000 – 2,200,000). Number 65 out of a production run limited to 77, RM’s car, although left-hand drive, was originally UK-supplied in 2011, remaining there until being registered in Switzerland in 2020, and at the time of cataloguing had covered a scant 1,785km.
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