What did the 2015 Monterey Auctions tell us this year? A lot!

The 2014 auction results were no fluke! The final auction result entries show that we are over the 400 million mark for the second year in a row, and not far off from the record-setting $428 million dollars in cars sold in 2014.

So far, 2015 has shown:

  • RM Auctions setting a new auction record at $172.9 million in sales
  • Gooding & Company setting a two-day sales company record with $128 million in sales, and
  • numerous records being set for many cars, creating many new benchmarks.

The overall results have more to do with what cars were on the auction block in 2015 and not the collector car market.

Ferrari is still king of the auction block. There were numerous record-setting prices for Ferrari when the hammer dropped last week. Out of the top 25 cars sold at the Monterey Auctions, 16 of them were Ferrari’s. In fact, the top two were the 1964 Ferrari 250LM ($17.6 million) and the 1961 Ferrari 250GT California SWB Spider ($16.83 million).

Next, values on Exotics from the 80’s through current day are growing at a rapid pace! This is great for the hobby. As long as there is a demand, automakers will continue to outdo themselves each model year.

As an example, here are the top 8 modern day exotics from the RM Auction:

1 – 1998 McLaren F1 ‘LM-Specification’- $13,750,000
2 – 2005 Ferrari Enzo – $6,050,000
3 – 1994 Ferrari F40 LM – $3,300,000
4 – 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO – $2,420,000
5 – 2012 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport “300” – $2,310,000
6 – 2005 Maserati MC12 – $2,090,000
7 – 2015 McLaren P1 – $1,980,000
8 – 1995 Ferrari F50 – $1,980,000

We also have big classic cars continuing to hold their own. From pre-war back to the Brass era, these cars steal the show at the Concours events. The Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is a perfect example with a 1924 Isotta Fraschini Tipo 8A taking best-of-show this year.

The best-in-class Gold Ribbon winners were:

  • 1914 Rolls Royce,
  • 1937 Delahaye
  • 1953 Abarth 1100

 

New cars on the block! I loved seeing a couple examples of the 1967 Toyota 2000GT go across the block.   They were a unique and very rare sports car from Toyota that housed a Yamaha-influenced overhead cam in line 6-cylinder. Rick Cole Auctions and Mecum Auctions were both selling exceptional examples of these cars. These cars are making a statement for the Japanese automakers in the collector car hobby by selling in the million dollar range!

Lastly, one has to ask, is it the Gen Xers making their presence known in the hobby driving these prices?  The number of first time bidders and bidders in there 30’s and 40’s are at an all-time high. I am going to say they are definitely having an impact. And this is a very good sign for the collector car hobby!

Monterey week is the best of the best. You will see cars you have never seen before and you will see cars selling left and right that the normal person would have to win the lottery to even consider. It is a spectacle and it is fun! Here is hoping that my generation (gen x) can keep it going!

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Rick Drewry

Collector Car Senior Specialist at American Modern Insurance Group
Rick Drewry is the senior claims specialist, Collector Vehicle & Motorcycle, at American Modern Insurance Group. He has been passionate about collector cars since he was a kid. He has owned and restored collector cars for 30 years.

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