Sales Settling into a Rhythm when Realistic Prices and Enthusiastic Buyers Restore Confidence


If there were a collective noun for auctions “an avalanche of auctions” would be an apt description of the first two weeks of September.

 

It is interesting to see that after the peaky 80% + sales rates of August, the market has settled into a slightly more gentle rhythm:

 

Auction

Total Cars Put to Auction

Sold

Sold%

Unsold

Unsold %

Value of sold units

Bonhams Beaulieu 3 September 2016

112

86

77%

26

23%

£2,660,872

Bonhams Chantilly 3 September 2016

27

17

63%

10

37%

€ 9,213,307

Silverstone Salon Prive Sale 3 September 2016

68

47

69%

21

31%

£3,518,130

RM Auctions Battersea 7 September 2016

72

52

72%

20

28%

£15,085,550

Bonhams Goodwood Revival 10 September 2016

84

59

70%

25

30%

£11,971,034

 

But anyone looking to set accurate estimates on sales prices is a fool or an optimist.  A fine example is DB5 vs DB6 – 12 months ago a DB5 was way ahead of a DB6 yet at Goodwood last Saturday, a respectable DB5 and a well restored DB6 Vantage saw identical prices of £455,100  (with premium) – where does that put a nice DB6 Mark 2?

 

The major events were RM’s annual venture into Battersea and Bonhams appearance at the Goodwood Revival.  Max who?  The sale went well under the direction of another RM Sothebys linguist who certainly pulled some outstanding prices out of the bag – especially on the Porsches but it was nice to see a proper judgement day for a DB4GT and £2,408,000 with premium at least gives us a benchmark rather than guesswork.  Not all the Aston Martins shone, but that is the current market – reserves have to be judged carefully.

 

Bonhams must be the only people who really appreciated the rain that covered Goodwood last Saturday – the marquee was packed with people but it was perhaps difficult to differentiate between buyers and those who thought a refuge in the dry was worth the price of the catalogue!  Small moan – Bonhams at Goodwood , whether at the Festival of Speed or the Revival have provided “facilities” that were a cut above.  Not on Saturday and, irrespective of rain induced crowds, queues at the Gents were a poor show!

 

Strangely enough, Bonhams opened their inventories at Chantilly and Goodwood with a Nash Metropolitan – both sold, as did all the cars offered with no reserve but this category was in the minority and it may be why the sales rate slipped back.

 

Of course there were cars that ran way above estimate, but even the superstars hesitated – a lovely 1936 Aston Martin Speed Model to which Bonhams had dedicated 20 brochure pages and a bottom estimate of £1.6 million, was bid to £1.4 million and remained unsold.  And again, a 1956 Porsche Sports Racer by Rennsport was estimated at £4.7 million, however, the hammer price of £4.1 million was enough to secure a sale.

 

Sticking with our favourite cars, some 15 Aston Martins have gone under the hammer in September and it is worth listing the results which, as ever, vary from the startling to the frankly disappointing:

 

Year

Offered for Sale

Price Estimate

Selling Price

Auction

1960

Aston Martin DB4 Series II

£275,000 - 325,000

Unsold

Salon Prive Sale 3/9/16

1959

Aston Martin DB4 Series I Project

£150,000 - 180,000

£203,100

Bonhams Beaulieu 3/9/16

1967

Aston Martin DB6 Mark 1 Vantage

£200,000 - 250,000

£197,500

Bonhams Beaulieu 3/9/16

1963

Aston Martin DB4 Series V Convertible

£950,000 - 1,100,000

£952,000

RM Auctions 7/9/16

1961

Aston Martin DB4 Series II LHD

£480,000 - 520,000

£515,200

RM Auctions 7/9/16

1953

Aston Martin DB2 Vantage

£185,000 - 215,000

Unsold

RM Auctions 7/9/16

1960

Aston Martin DB4GT

£2,200,000 - 2,500,000

£2,408,000

RM Auctions 7/9/16

2009

Aston Martin DBS Volante - Manual

£110,000 - 130,000

Unsold

RM Auctions 7/9/16

1986

Aston Martin V8 Vantage Zagato Coupe

£250,000 - 300,000

£253,500

Goodwood Revival 10/9/16

2000

Aston Martin Vantage Le Mans V600

£350,000 - 450,000

£354,300

Goodwood Revival 10/9/16

1952

Aston Martin DB2 Saloon

£150,000 - 180,000

£199,740

Goodwood Revival 10/9/16

1936

Aston Martin 2 litre Speed Model Red Dragon Sports Racing 2 seater

£1,600,000 - 2,000,000

Unsold

Goodwood Revival 10/9/16

1964

Aston Martin DB5 Saloon

£450,000 - 550,000

£455,100

Goodwood Revival 10/9/16

1967

Aston Martin DB6 Vantage 4.2 litre Saloon

£280,000 - 340,000

£455,100

Goodwood Revival 10/9/16

1970

Aston Martin DB6 Mark 2 Volante

£800,000 - 1,000,000

Unsold

Goodwood Revival 10/9/16

 

So there is confidence in the market and buyers but those buyers remain in control of the price structure.  It is no longer a badge that sells the car, it is condition, provenance and the straightforward “kerb appeal” that it has to the buyer.

© BYRON INTERNATIONAL

 


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