Totals from Amelia Island Auctions Decline for the Second Year; Cars Under $1M and Barn Finds Performed Well

Jacksonville, FL — With lower overall results on average price and total sales, the five auctions held March 8-10 at Amelia Island achieved a total of $80.4 million, compared to $120.3 in 2017, according to data compiled by Hagerty.
The decline was expected due to fewer and less expensive cars being offered, but the final figure was well below Hagerty’s forecast of $91 million, due to several misses among the most expensive offerings on the island.
Top of the board at Amelia, this barn find Ferrari 275 GTB from Gooding.
Photo: Gooding & Co.

The sell-through rate registered a slight rise from 66% in 2017 to 68% this year with 334 of 489 offerings sold, and the average sale price closed at $240,794 versus last year’s $333,219.

Overall top 10
• 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB Long Nose Alloy Coupe (Gooding & Co.): $2.530 million
• 2003 Ferrari Enzo Coupe (Gooding & Co.): $2.365 million
• 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB Long Nose Coupe (RM Sotheby’s): $2.205 million
• 1967 Ford GT40 Mk IV Coupe (Gooding & Co.): $1.925 million
• 1993 Porsche 911 Turbo S Leichtbau Coupe (Gooding & Co.): $1.760 million
• 2015 McLaren P1 Coupe (Bonhams): $1.710 million
• 1993 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 3.8 Coupe (RM Sotheby’s): $1.655 million
• 1952 Ferrari 212 Europa Cabriolet (Gooding & Co.): $1.6 million
• 1990 Porsche 962C Race Car (Gooding & Co.): $1.595 million
• 2015 Porsche 918 Spyder (Gooding & Co.): $1.540 million
“In some ways, the thrill is gone as far as seven-figure cars go,” remarked Dave Kinney, publisher of Hagerty Price Guide, “at least as it applies to those that aren’t in exemplary condition or have an exemplary story.” Even still, market observer Colin Comer noted that “this week’s sales proved that buyers have faith in the underlying strength of the market, which kicked off with a bang in Arizona despite gloomy expectations. Spectacular cars priced under $1 million and fresh-to-market cars such as the barn find Cobra and Ferrari 275 GTB that sold at Gooding continue to be especially attractive to buyers.”
Despite having a dizzying array of Porsches across all the auction venues, the Stuttgart marque outperformed the market at large with a strong 90% sell-through rate and sale prices 6% above the low estimate. Overall, the 964 and 993 Porsche generations had mixed results with roughly half of these cars selling above condition-appropriate prices and half selling below — those that scored big were the distinct cars.
In general, later model, low-mileage, low-production performance cars did well. “That’s the bright and shiny segment right now,” said Comer. “Many such lots saw spirited bidding and exceeded expectations this week.” A 2001 Lamborghini Diablo VT 6.0 SE with 14 miles sold for a strong $412,000 at RM Sotheby’s auction. A 2007 Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano in black with a rare (one of 20) 6-speed manual sold for $506,000 at Gooding & Company, which is not much less than the $621,000 that a 1972 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Coupe sold for at RM Sotheby’s auction.
The pre-war segment also had a good showing at the auctions this year, underscoring the importance of offering these special cars to the correct audience. The 83% sell-through rate for these cars was slightly below last year’s, but the cars performed better against estimate than in 2017. While some examples such as the condition #1 rated 1931 Marmon Sixteen Convertible Coupe at RM Sotheby’s sold for 50% over low estimate at $1.05 million, more typical was the condition #2- 1939 Bentley Tourer Convertible that Bonhams sold for $197,120 at 4% over its low estimate. As with all segments of the market, exceptional pre-war cars sell very well, while the market for condition #2 and #3 cars continues to hum along.
Volkswagen Beetles had strong results (RM Sotheby’s sold a 1956 convertible for $72,800 and Hollywood Wheels sold a 1963 sedan for $27,000) as did later Mercedes-Benz SLs (Gooding sold a 2002 SL500 for $48,400, and RM Sotheby’s sold a 1988 560SL for $95,200). Another standout sale was the 1975 BMW 2002 turbo that set an auction record for the model when it sold for $192,500 at Gooding & Company’s auction on Friday.
Hagerty expects interest to continue to focus on more modern cars, especially those with a legitimate motorsports connection or outstanding performance pedigree. As for the rarefied models, Comer concluded, “sellers of upper-altitude cars will either have to adjust their expectations to what could be new market values or simply become comfortable waiting for the right buyer to come along.” Kinney agreed, saying “the top of the market is as choosy as ever.”
Bonhams posted sales of nearly $13.5 million and an 87% sell-through rate from its March 8 auction.
The company achieved world auction records for two Porsche models when the 1992 911 Turbo 3.3 Coupe and 1989 911 Carrera 3.2 Targa brought $343,800 and $169,120, respectively. Bonhams set two other world auction records for the 1947 Delahaye 135MS Coupe by Pininfarina ($478,000) and the rare 1919 Pierce Arrow Series 51 4-Passenger Tourer ($280,000).
Gooding & Company realized sales of $35,937,250 at its Friday auction, achieving a 95.4% sell-through rate.
The company placed seven cars in the overall top 10 sales, with 14 cars each selling for more than $1 million. It also claimed five world record prices, including for two of the cars in the top 10: the 1993 Porsche 964 Turbo S Leichtbau and the 1952 Ferrari 212 Europa Cabriolet.
Hollywood Wheels hasn’t released sales results, but Hagerty reported the company had sales of $1.8 million and a 23% sell-through rate for its Friday Auto Retro HyperCar sale and its Saturday Select sale.
RM Sotheby’s achieved sales of $27.7 million with an 86% sell-through rate for its 20th annual Amelia Island sale, which was moved up a day to Friday.
The company scored two cars in the overall top 10, including a 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB Long Nose Coupe and one of the 11 offerings from the sale’s Exclusively Porsche collection — the 1993 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 3.8 which sold for $1.655 million against a pre-sale estimate of $1.2 million-$1.5 million.
–Our thanks and appreciation to Jonathan Klinger, Hagerty’s VP of Public Relations, for providing auction data and commentary.