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Preeminent international auction house, RM Auctions, has continued its strong 2009 sales run, posting in excess of $9.1 million in sales with an impressive 94% of motor cars sold at the Vintage Motor Cars of Hershey event in Pennsylvania this week. Held in conjunction with the famed AACA Eastern Division Fall Meet, the two-day auction kicked off Thursday, October 8, with the highly successful sale of a private East Coast collection of automobilia, which achieved over $400,000 in total sales. Continuing the momentum, yesterday's auction presented some 50 lots of memorabilia and 136 motor cars to a packed audience. The evening's top sale was a highly desirable 1931 Marmon Sixteen Convertible Coupe which realized $517,000, while a largely unrestored 1933 Cadillac V16 Convertible Victoria brought $412,500. The handsome Cadillac V16 was one of just two examples built and was originally owned by Hollywood actor Robert Montgomery.
The 15th annual Glenmoor Gathering of Significant Automobiles showcased over 200 invitation-only vehicles arranged in two dozen categories on the beautiful grounds of the Glenmoor Country Club in Canton, Ohio. The event honored one of the most underrated automobile executives, Edsel B. Ford, the only son of Ford Motor Company founder Henry Ford. The Grand marshal was Moray Callum, the newly-appointed executive director of Ford Americas design. The event also recognized the accomplishments of Alice Ramsey, who, in 1909, became the first woman to drive an automobile across the United States. The diverse field of cars ranged from the early 20th century to the modern 'muscle' era. At the far end of the field were modern supercars from such legendary marques as Vector, Alfa Romeo, Bugatti, Lamborghini and Ferrari. It seems that every year, there are several 'memorable' categories that resound in the hearts of the automotive enthusiast. Leading the way was the Amelia Island Concours with their 'Giallo Fly - Yellow Italian Cars.' The Meadow Brook Concours had their 'Swoopy Coupes' featuring several fastback designs from the late 1930s and early 1940s from many different marques. On paper, these categories are both 'fun' and genius. On the show field, with each vehicle complimenting the next, these categories were truly memorable. The Glenmoor Gathering had an equally intriguing and memorable category - 'Vintage French Fronts.'
Concorso Italiano, a well established annual event, had everything to prove this year. The 2008 event was marred by cold and windy weather and was at a barren airport location that did not have the scenery or the pavement to house such a prestigious event. Many began to think this might be the end of the glorious annual show; car clubs, car owners, and spectators vowed they would not return in 2009. The new owners worked hard to return the event to its former glory, and to convince spectators and car owners to reconsider. To make things even more difficult, a new event of similar genre announced its arrival to the bay area and was held on the same day. The organizers secured a new location at the green fairways of Laguna Seca Golf Club, just minutes away from the Laguna Seca racetrack and the Monterey Historic Races. The location was picturesque, with rolling hills and plenty of greenery to house the thousands of cars and spectators. With a new location and after countless promises that this year's event would be different than 2008 - Concorso Italiano returned in a big way! Attendance appeared to be very strong and the list of automobiles in attendance seemed to be endless. Along with modern supercars, there was a vast selection of classics and ultra-rare road-going vehicles.
RM Auctions kicked off a busy month of auction action in Rochester, Michigan over the weekend, posting in excess of $5.4 million in total sales with an impressive 79% of lots sold at its 15th annual Vintage Motor Cars of Meadow Brook event on August 1st. Held in conjunction with the 30th anniversary Meadow Brook Concours d'Elegance, the single-day event presented some 102 magnificent collector cars for auction, along with a select range of memorabilia. Well-attended by discerning collectors from across North America, the auction set the scene for the Concours 'Best of Detroit' celebrations the following day by shining a spotlight on Michigan's rich automotive history with numerous auction cars making their way back to their Motor City birthplace for the event. 'Our annual Vintage Motor Cars of Meadow Brook event is a mainstay of our auction calendar and one we all look forward to each year. This year's event was a great start to a busy month ahead, posting strong results, including a solid 79% sell through,' says Ian Kelleher, President and Chief Operating Officer of RM Auctions.
The 36th Edition of the Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races, one of the most exciting and eventful spectacles of its kind in the world, honored Porsche as their featured marque. This multi-day racing event is held annually at the 2.238-mile, 11-turn Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Along with the plethora of significant cars on the track, the event attracts many very big names in auto racing, including Derek Bell, David Donohue, Vic Elford, Jurgen Barth, Brian Redman, and Hurley Haywood. There were 450 entrants in 15 different race groups with one-third of the race cars being Porsches, representing 61 years of the company's legacy. The company has been the featured marque at the Monterey Historics on two prior occasions - in 1982 and in 1998. This third appearance allows them to join Ferrari and Alfa Romeo as the only automakers to be selected three times. Porsche has always had a very strong loyal customer following, and this has served as one of their key ingredients in their racing success. They built an early reputation with the 356 and evolved to another level with their 911 sports car. Over their prestigious career of racing and building cars, their accomplishments have firmly established them as one of the finest makers of sports oriented production models and one of the most winning names in the sport. Porsche has continued its racing determinations and their commitment to its racing program over the years, with entries for SCCCA's Can-Am, the World Championship of Makes (WSC) Group C category and IMSA's GTP. In all their endeavors, Porsche would come out on top.
The Pebble Beach / Monterey Weekend began with the third annual Carmel-By-The-Sea Concours on the Avenue. The event took place in Carmel, CA just miles away from the location of the famed Pebble Beach Concours, happening just several days later. Though there is a flurry of other events that occur during this hectic time, the Concours On The Avenue brings its own flavor, featuring a wide range of vehicles and one of the few events to showcase American cars built in the post-war era. Porsche and Ferrari were this years feature with several categories reserved for each marque. The entry list was limited to 180 vehicles, though there were certainly more than 200 motorcycles and automobiles on display. Due to the slow economy, the Concours on the Avenue was condensed from two-days into one. Last year, Porsche and Ferrari were featured on the first day with the second day showcasing many attainable vintage cars and production automobiles built between 1949 and 1971. The Vehicles The list of vehicles included racing, European masterpieces, American muscle, family favorites, vintage, and micro cars. In the 'American & Continental European Sport' category was a Crosley Hotshot, considered by some to be America's first post-war sports car. The small, two-seater is powered by an overhead cam engine with a displacement size of only three-quarters of a liter. The Muntz Jet in attendance was the 15th built by the Muntz car Company, and one of the 39 that were produced in Glendale, California, before production was relocated to Illinois. The car's initial design was done by Frank Kurtis, but Kurtis sold a license to Muntz to manufacture the cars. Another low production car was the Sunbeam Alpine. The series IV example on display was on its third owner but still in its original, unrestored condition. Arguably the most attractive car in this category was the Corvette bodied by Carrozzeria Scaglietti in Maranello, Italy. It was given a lightweight alloy body and a Chevy powerplant.
The La Dolce Vita Automobili at Black Horse was formed to bring energy, passion, and people into a relaxing and fun atmosphere in a setting that captures the excitement of the Monterey Week. This was the inaugural year for the event and was held at the Bayonet & Black Horse Golf Course in Monterey, California. It is an event organized by car owners for car enthusiasts. The collection of automobiles spread out over the greenery included such Italian exotics as Lamborghini, Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Lancia, Pantera and Fiat. There were special displays honoring the 75th anniversary of the innovative Citroen Traction Avant cars, Alfa past and present, Maserati GranTouring elegance and the stylish and progressive Lancia designs. The event was held during the busy Monterey Week and on one of the busiest days on the schedule. The day was littered with racing at Laguna Seca, several concourses (one just down the road that had a similar genre of vehicles), auctions, and so much more. The purpose of this newly created event was to bring the Italian flair back to the luscious greens of the Black Horse Golf Course. (In 2008, Concorso moved to the tarmac of a Municipal Airport - to much dismay of many enthusiasts and car owners. The event has since been relocated to the Laguna Seca Golf Ranch in Monterey). Additionally, the event strives to offer select and relevant vendors, the finest automobiles, and to keep from overpopulating the grounds with large numbers of cars just to satisfy all marques in attendance. For an event that is in direct competition for spectators and exhibitors, La Dolche was able to deliver on quality and rarity. There were many seldom seen automobiles and they kept true to their mission. The skyline and scenery were visible from all angles as vendor tents, fences and other obstacles were kept to a minimum. It was peaceful, enjoyable, educational, and relaxing.
Gooding Sold 129 Exceptional Lots with Two $4+ Million Cars and Achieved Three World Records in 2 Days Gooding & Company, the official auction house of the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance®, sold 129 total lots over both Saturday and Sunday auction events, collectively earning more than $50 Million* in sales. Continuing its successful presence at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance and as the leading auction house in Monterey, Gooding & Company attracted thousands of collectors and enthusiasts from around the world last week. Sunday's totals were north of the competition with $29+ million for 55 lots sold out of 70 offered. Nine exceptional cars sold for more than $1 Million each. The evening's top five sales were the 1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider at $5,115,000, the 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 Drop Head Coupe at $4,180,000, the 1935 Duesenberg Model SJ Roadster at $3,300,000, the 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Series I at $1,540,000 and the 1934 Mercedes-Benz 380 Sport Roadster at $1,078,000.
A 1937 Horch 853 Voll & Ruhrbeck Sport Cabriolet, owned by Robert M. Lee of Sparks, Nev., was named 'Best of Show' at the 59th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance held Sunday along the 18th fairway of Pebble Beach Golf Links®. Proceeds from raffles, auctions, sponsorships and gate receipts helped contribute more than $1 million to charity for the fourth consecutive year. 'The Horch has wonderful lines, a great proven chassis and all the beauty that make it the whole package,' said Lee, who also won best of show at Pebble Beach in 2006. 'Pebble Beach is the greatest car show in the world and winning here is indescribable. It's been a wonderful day for us here and I have the best team to thank for making it happen.' Competitors from 30 states and 19 countries brought their prized automotive possessions to the California's Monterey Peninsula for judging in 28 classes.
PHIL HILL'S SON DRIVES 1952 JAGUAR C-TYPE TO AUCTION WORLD RECORD - Historic 1952 Jaguar C-Type brings $2,530,000 at RM's Sports & Classics of Monterey sale to set a new auction world record for a C-Type - Other top sellers - 1955 Aston Martin DB3S for $1,980,000 and 1935 Duesenberg Model SJ Disappearing Top Convertible Coupe for $1,430,000 - Distinguished Nick Alexander Woodie Collection achieves over $7,000,000
Once again the beautiful and sunny setting of Carmel Valley, California, drew collectors from around the world to Bonhams' flagship Quail Lodge motorcar auction last Friday the 14th. As expected, the most hotly contested cars came from the Sidney & Jenny Craig Collection, which was 100% sold and included spirited battles for the ex-Al Capone 1930 Cadillac V-16 armored Sedan, the ex-President Franklin D. Roosevelt Lincoln Model K, and the ex-William Boyd a.k.a. Hopalong Cassidy 1933 Duesenberg Model J Torpedo Convertible Victoria, which achieved $1,437,000. Elsewhere in the sale there were a number of strong results, the market being most buoyant for the rarest and freshest offerings. These included:
This year's eighteenth anniversary celebration is destined to be one of the best as Gordon and Molly McCall prepare to 'wow' their faithful following of VIP guests now topping over 2500. The horsepower of the guests surpass even the horsepower on display, while McCall's private airport party has become known as the highest concentration of high-powered people and machinery on the Monterey Peninsula for the entire Monterey car week. International sponsors join in the spirit of the celebration together with California's best regional foods and local Bernardus wines by pulling out all the stops when it comes to supporting the 2009 McCall event. Porsche, Breitling, Gulfstream, Bombardier, Piaggio, and Bonham's & Butterfeilds are just a few of the 'high-water mark' companies providing style and elegance to the eclectic evening of gourmet delectables and fast paced machinery. Wall to wall Motorsports icons fill the 30,000 square foot state-of-the-art hangar and adjacent 1+ acre tarmac with racing legends such as Jim Hall, Wayne Rainey, Jim Busby, Danny Sullivan, Dan Gurney, Pete Lovely, and many others. 'We are really excited to create an event that will get people charged and enthusiastic about the weeks events to come. There's a lot to do on the Monterey Peninsula over the next few days and we love being a part of the positive energy.' says McCall, a passionate Motorsports fan who travels the country now wearing many hats: As good will 'Ambassador' for the MOTORWORKS event, Specialist for Bonham's & Butterfeilds, and Co-Founder of the elegant motorsports gathering 'The Quail', and the new The Quail Motorcycle Gathering- Two world class events for motorsports and motorcycle enthusiasts. McCall stays busy and keeps his 'ear to the ground' year round, not only staying on top of every aspect of the car market both vintage and contemporary but also meeting the world's most interesting collectors and automobile aficionados.
AN EMOTIONAL VICTORY FOR DE FERRAN, PAGENAUD Pairing wins for first time at Mid-Ohio, fourth on season Gil de Ferran and Simon Pagenaud went flag-to-flag Saturday to win the Acura Sports Car Challenge at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, their fourth consecutive overall victory in the American Le Mans Series. Team owner de Ferran qualified on the overall pole position, and the pairing won at Mid-Ohio for the first time in their careers. The victorious team boss crossed the finish line in the de Ferran XM Acura ARX-02a 8.358 seconds ahead of Patrón Highcroft Racing's David Brabham and the Acura that he drove with LMP1 championship co-leader Scott Sharp.
By Dave Lewandowski - Indycar.com A sweat-soaked firesuit served as his royal garb and a water bottle his scepter. Nonetheless, Scott Dixon was crowned the IndyCar Series king Aug. 9 in Victory Circle at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Dixon won the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio presented by Westfield Insurance in commanding fashion for his record 20th IndyCar Series victory. Speedways, bullrings, road/street circuits, the 30-year-old New Zealander has conquered them all - along with two series titles and an Indianapolis 500 victory. 'Obviously it's a fantastic milestone for myself and obviously for the team,' said Dixon, who registered his fourth win of the season. 'I've achieved all of those wins with Target. Without them, it wouldn't have been possible.
The 30th Anniversary of the Meadow Brook Concours d'Elegance unfolded in the shadow of iconic Meadow Brook Hall and the serene campus of Oakland University in Rochester, MI. Since its inception in 1979 the event has evolved into a spectacular weekend affair including a motoring tour, welcome reception, classic car auction, gala, and the uniquely judged automotive competition of truly significant automobiles. The theme of this year's Concours d'Elegance was 'The Best of Detroit,' a category that included leaders in design, engineering, and power. In honor of the Meadow Brook's 30th Anniversary, cars from the inaugural event were showcased, some of which were still in the same ownership 30 years ago. Additional features to this year's event included dragsters, Gassers, Rolls-Royce Phantoms, and Packards. Other headliners included a 1911 Hupmobile, a 1954 Fiat 8V Supersonic, and a 1934 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300, which made its North American debut at the concours. Over the past 30 years, the Meadow Brook Concours has come to be hailed as one of the most prestigious car events of its kind in the world. It is an event that celebrates automotive history, heritage, quality of restoration and enthusiasm for the old car hobby.
In an economy that has continued to slow and affect nearly every facet of industry, the 27th Annual Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix (PVGP) held strong. The PVGP is unique in many ways - it is an all-volunteer event that is still run on city streets. It has been consecutively run for the past 27 years and attracts nearly a quarter-million spectators. The course has 22 turns, 3 of them are nearly 180 degrees, and top speeds exceeding 100 mph. Obstacles such as ancient stone walls, side walks, street signs, telephone pools, steep infield drop-offs, changing surface materials, and bridges are constant reminders to the drivers that any mistake could be very costly. The winners of the race do not earn points nor is there prize money. Yet, even without these motivations, most navigate the course to the extreme, pushing every corner and demanding the most out of their car. Granted, there are drivers that enjoy the race for other reasons, but most are out there to win, improve their lap times, beat the next car, and push themselves and their vehicle to the limit on a very demanding road course. Along with racing, the event serves to encourage and inspire the acquisition and preservation of vintage sports cars. Race Groups The first cars on the course were the Pre-World War II category, which included classic sports and racing cars of the era that ran in the early years at legendary venues like LeMans, Brooklands, Monza, and Nurburgring. America's pre-war racing heritage is represented by Indy, Sprint, and ARCA cars. Included in this group was a 1912 Mercedes GP Car, a Duesenberg Boat-tail Indy Speedster, two Bugatti Type 37 cars, a Riley Brooklands, and several other prestigious and noteworthy legends.
The Mercer Automobile Company was founded in 1909. The Trenton, NJ-based company's origins date to a few years prior, when William Walter began producing cars under his own name with financial aid from the wealthy Roebling and Kuser families of Trenton. Etienne Planche, a Frenchman who had worked for Armand Peugeot, was hired to improve upon the design of the Walter cars. Walter began producing vehicles of great quality, including the fast Roebling-Planche car, but at a high price of around $5,000 they found a very limited audience. The company couldn't sell enough cars, and financial hardship forced its closing. Still seeing the potential of investing in the burgeoning automobile business, the Roeblings and Kusers incorporated the Mercer Automobile Company. They purchased the remnants of the Walter Company and in doing so acquired the tooling and space needed to produce cars once again. At about $2,000, the new Mercers were still expensive. They were affordable enough to have a broadened appeal compared to the Walter, though, and the new company would ultimately be much more successful. The wealthy Roeblings continued to pour money and influence into the company in order to give it the best chance of flourishing.
The Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix is the only American vintage race run on city streets - the way sports car racing began. The PVGP is synonymous with Schenley Park and 2009 will mark the 27th consecutive year racing through the beautiful park setting. Vintage racing at Schenley Park is the culmination of a 10-day Race Week highlighted by Historic Races at BeaveRun, numerous car shows, cruises, a Blacktie Gala, and our Kickoff Road Rallye. Bossa Nova Located in the heart of the Cultural District serving authentic global tapas, exotic cocktails and some of the finest martinis...shaken or stirred. With a unique space that features cozy lounges, a dramatic bar and an eclectic blend of music, art and sculpture. Downtown Parade & Car Display
The Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix is a multi-weekend event that has been in operation for over two-and-a-half decades. It is a ten day celebration packed with car shows, dinners, parades, races, and numerous other activities. It is the largest volunteer-based event in vintage racing and the longest running vintage race event in the nation, now celebrating its 27th consecutive year. The first event was a kick-off Rallye which had car enthusiasts match their driving skills against a 'mystery course' through the streets of Pittsburgh, PA. It was a 2-3 hour activity that tested both driving and navigational skills. The next event in the 10-day celebration was the 5th Annual PVGP Historic Race at the BeaveRun MotorSports Complex track. The BeaveRun Historics is a welcomed compliment to the PVGP, as it provides a second racing venue which attracts an even wider audience of drivers and vehicles. Unlike the PVGP course, the BeaveRun circuit is very forgiving with sand traps and plenty of run-off areas. The PVGP is run through Schenley Park - and although every precaution has been taken to make the course as safe for drivers, spectators, and the cars - it is a public park and there are trees, barriers, and obstacles which could potentially do harm. With the BeaveRun circuit, risks are lower which occasionally fosters greater speeds and another variety of vehicles.
SVRA, the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association, has upwards of 400 participants spanning ten groups of race cars with vehicles from around the world. Most of the cars are period-correct, racing in the same configuration as originally raced many years ago. The cars are arranged into groups based on a number of different criteria and offer spectators a wide variety of racing to enjoy. The list includes vintage stock cars, production-base GT racers, open-wheeled Formula cars, and more. Most events feature 10 groups of racers competing in 30 minute Sprint Series races. There are often several featured MotorCheck Enduro Series races plus several special events, which would place either a marque or type of car in the spot light. Recently, the SVRA went racing at Mid-Ohio's 2.4-mile, 15-turn racing circuit. This years event paid homage to the history and heritage of the Mini Cooper and its over 40 years of commercial and racing success. Along with the excitement on the track, the event included a British Car Showdown and Concours d'Elegance. The Formula 5000 Drivers Association fielded about a dozen historic Formula 500 cars from several different makes including Chevron, Eagle, Lola, McKee, McRae and Shadow, spanning production years from 1969 to 1976. Some of the highlights from this group included 1969 Gurney Eagle Championship car driven by Formula 5000 Champion Tony Adamowicz. Another impressive example was the ex-Brian Redman 1976 Championship Lola T332. According to Seb Coppola, president of the Formula 5000 Drivers Association, 'It is fantastic to have a large field of Formula 5000 return to Mid-Ohio more than 30 years after these cars competed in professional races at this storied track. Drivers and fans will enjoy a thrilling weekend they have not experienced since the mid 1970s.'
The 32nd Annual Ault Park Concours d'Elegance, held in the city of Cincinnati, Ohio, had over 230 rare and historic vehicles in the scenic gardens of Ault Park. 'We had an amazing event this year, particularly considering the current economic conditions. Not only did we have record attendance for Sunday's Concours, our Friday night fundraising event and Saturday countryside tour and garage party were extremely well-attended' said Sue Willis, Executive Director of the Cincinnati Concours d' Elegance Foundation. This years event celebrated 'Excellence in German Design and Engineering,' land speed record vehicles, and Morgans 100th anniversary. There were five classes representing the featured theme, including racing, sports & touring, and contemporary cars from the pre- and post-War eras. In the Morgan class, were over a dozen examples representing many of the models produced during their existence. On January 2, 1904, Charles Schmidt drove the lightning-quick Packard Gray Wolf, at 1,430 pounds, to a new five-mile record of 4:21.6 minutes, in the medium weight category. The Packard Gray Wolf made a rare trip from its museum home to attend this year's concours. It was one of the oldest cars on display. The Vehicles The organizers did a superb job of assembling a wide variety of vehicles capable of capturing the interests and admiration of the young and old alike. One section of the field was reserved for Collector and Performance American cars ranging from the mid-1940s through the early 1970s. One of the highlights in the performance category was the 1969 Chevy Chevelle with the Yenko Sports Car Conversion Package. It is one of only 99 COPO/Yenko Chevelles produced. Best of Class honors went to the 1969 Dodge Coronet Hemi Super Bee owned by Tom James of Cincinnati, Ohio. It is one of 29 Hemi Super Bee's built in 1969 and is powered by a 426 cubic-inch engine offering 425 horsepower. In the Collector American category, Best of Class honors went to a 1964 Ford Mustang Convertible owned by Nick Ferry of Cincinnati. The Mustang beat several worth contenders, including a Packard 400, a Tucker Torpedo, Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz, and a Muntz Jet Sports Convertible.
Nestled back in rural Pennsylvania near the towering Poconos, Skytop Lodge rests atop a scenic hill surrounded by wilderness and quiet. The Lodge, with its regal stone architecture and great size, looks more like the grandiose mansion of a wealthy Englishman than a lodge for vacationing skiers. The property surrounding it is full of lovely yards overlooking a golf course and a peaceful lake. Little cabins pepper the area nearest the main building, where resting patrons may indulge in an uncluttered existence away from the hectic hustle of city living. The Skytop Lodge would be the perfect venue for a flower show or a wedding reception, but for the last 23 years a group of Italian car aficionados have had another idea for the tranquil location. Le Belle Macchine d'Italia, a yearly gathering of Italy's finest automobiles, holds its concorso d'eleganza on the South Lawn at Skytop. Italian cars have a tendency to care little about being quiet or peaceful, placing a stronger emphasis on delivering striking performance and sinister looks. For this reason, Le Belle Macchine d'Italia introduces a different flavor to the reposeful land of Skytop. Saturday, June 20 was the day of this year's show. The morning of the event began as would any other morning at Skytop. The sun rose slowly over the hills, illuminating the picturesque scenery. It filtered through thickening clouds, streaking the colors of a foggy dawn. Everything was fine, the morning cool and the air brisk—but then they appeared. Like poisonous spiders waiting patiently to bite, ten Lamborghinis sat in their sparkling web just in front of the main building. Parked on a small plot of grass, their intimidating creases contrasted starkly with the organic and earthy shapes of trees and cabins on the property. Through the fog, the frightening bodies of these deadly arachnids established a surrealistic feeling that was to permeate through the rest of the day.
International cars took center stage on day two of the 14th consecutive Greenwich Concours d'Elegance. Just like with day one (featuring American cars), day two was blessed with nice, warm weather. Over 150 vehicles were carefully arranged on the show field and offered a wide variety of sheet metal to impress the un-ending stream of onlookers throughout the day. From the large and stately pre-War cars from Renault, Alfa Romeo, and Lagonda to competition Porsche, Lola, and Ferrari models, the list of cars was as vast as it was diverse. The pre-War cars were among the finest and most elegant machinery on the show field. A pair of Lagonda's sat side-by-side just like the pair of Bugatti Type 37 racing cars parked a few feet away. The 1914 Renault was, perhaps, the most unique on the field; it received much attention throughout the day and was ultimately crowned 'People's Choice' as their most favorite vehicle in the show. Sitting just a short distance away from the Renault was an Alfa Romeo 6C 2300B. It had a similar body style to the Alfa 8C that won last year's Pebble Beach Concours and later earned top honors at the recent Villa d'Este. Granted, the 8C has a larger engine and a different history, but with similar proportions, design, and beauty, it was certainly a contender for Best of Show honors. As with most concours events, there were several categories reserved for sport, GT, and competition cars. Ferrari and Lamborghini occupied many of the spots in these two categories, with Porsche and Lola accounting for several of the cars in the Competition group. There were nearly a dozen Aston Martin vehicles on display, with the earliest example being a Short Chassis from 1934. The newest car on display was from 1999, the Aston Martin Vantage Le Mans Coupe. It is one of just 40 LeMans coupes ever built and one of only 2 known to be in the United States. Sitting directly in front of this car was an equally impressive and rare model, a 1998 Lamborghini Diablo SV Monterey edition. It is one of just 20 created and it originally sold for nearly $300,000.
The Greenwich Concours d'Elegance is a two-day affair that showcases American cars on one day and International cars on the second day. Both days highlight a grand array of vintage, classic, sports, touring, competition and collectible automobiles from the turn of the century to the present. Many of the vehicles are one-of-a-kind, limited production, or were custom-built for affluent customers. The event is held at the Roger Sherman Baldwin Park, in Greenwich, CT and includes vintage motorcycles, and an in-the-water display of vintage boats. The 14th consecutive edition of the Greenwich Concours was blessed with nice weather. The day before the event, however, had been a steady stream of rain. This downpour was responsible for the cancellation of the Yankees game in New York and left the Concours show field very muddy in places. The area just outside of Bonhams' Auction tent also had its share of the mess, slowing down spectators as they came to view the roughly 90 vehicles up for sale. The concours responded accordingly, doing all they could to make the walkways passable and keep the driving lanes moving for the cars coming onto the field. Considering there were nearly 150 vehicles on the roster for day one, (some of them among the heaviest cars ever created) the event organizers did a marvelous job at rectifying the mud problem. Regardless of weather conditions, the event has taken place every June since 1996 - rain or shine.
1990 was the inaugural year for a modest automobile show, organized by a group of volunteers and Members of the Board of Directors of the Burn Prevention Foundation, and held on the grounds of the Penn State Berks Campus. Its purpose was to assemble automobiles and people while promoting a message of preventing serious burn injuries through education. After twenty years, the event continues, and so does it message. Over $3.2 million has been raised during that time with approximately $1.2 million going to support the charitable programs of the Burn Prevention Foundation. After just six years, the concours had outgrown its location and moved to Lehigh University's Mountain Top Campus. Ten years later, in 2006, it moved again to its present location at Northampton Community College. Over the years, the concours has evolved dramatically and reached national prominence among concours events and continues to lure top collectors and large crowds. With two decades worth of history, it is one of the oldest continuously celebrated concours events in the United States, and the oldest concours on the east coast.
The 14th Annual Keels & Wheels Concours d'Elegance was held at the Lakewood Yacht Club in Seabrook, Texas, and showcased an incredible array of automotive and boating classics. It is the largest classic car & boat show in the country. The featured marque was Duesenberg, considered by many as the finest American automobile ever built. The other feature was The Cars of Carroll Shelby, revered among race and muscle car enthusiasts. The Lakewood Yacht Club location is tranquil and picturesque. Yachts, sail boats, and motor boats rested in the peaceful marina and the large protected inner harbor. Overlooking the water is a Bermuda-style clubhouse, situated on 35 acres, with a swimming pool, patio, and tennis courts. The show cars were positioned in both the front and back of the clubhouse, taking full advantage of all available greenery. The Keels & Wheels Concours is similar, in many ways, to other concours events, but also very different. Most events allow only one day to enjoy the vehicles, the Keels & Wheels concours gives onlookers several days of admiration. Many of the cars were brought two days before the concours and positioned on the show field. Since this is a multi-day event consisting of a concours, boat show, and concours, it allowed visitors plenty of opportunities to leisurely enjoy and learn about the cars.
The New York International Auto Show continues to be one of the most effective marketing opportunities for exhibitors. It's the largest-attended auto show in the country; the Show represents the nation's largest DMA for most automobile brands; and the majority of visitors come to make car-buying decisions. Concepts There were several exciting unveilings with many headed for production in the months that follow. Acura's new provocative ZDX luxury four-door sports coupe is excepted to go on sale in fall of 2009. 'The ZDX is truly a luxury performance coupe - plus,' said Jeff Conrad, vice president of Acura sales. 'The emotional coupe styling coupled with a luxurious and dramatic interior and surprising versatility, allows the ZDX to define its own segment and attract an entirely new customer.' The production ZDX will bring a new level of prestige and sophistication when it arrives at Acura dealerships in the fall, offering the latest advancements in performance, technology and safety. The ZDX will deliver sports sedan performance on the road with its powerful V-6 engine mated to an all-new, smooth shifting 6-speed automatic transmission. The potent powertrain will be coupled with Acura's exclusive Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™ system, giving the ZDX outstanding handling and cornering capabilities in all-weather conditions.
Off the coast of Northeast Florida on a secluded island, stands the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, home to the Amelia Island Concours. The vehicles are arranged on 10th and 18th fairways of the adjoining golf course offering breathtaking views in all locations. Now in its 14th year, the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance has become one of the premier events of its kind in the nation. This year's concours was a resounding success and, as stated by numerous show-goers, 'keeps getting better every year.' In the current economical climate, it was natural to expect less: smaller crowds and fewer entrants. This was not the case. The numbers of entrants and the quality of their vehicles were truly remarkable. The steady stream of enthusiasts kept the well-manicured greenery covered for most of the day. It was very evident that the story of the automobile, its history, heritage, and contributions to the economy, growth and nation's freedom will continue to be told, even in these challenging times. This year's event celebrated the world renowned coachbuilder Bohman & Schwartz as well as a pair of 50th anniversaries for significant races at Sebring and Daytona. Veteran racer David Hobbs served as Honoree for concours. 'We've known each other for a long time and I have watched David put in some of the most spirited drives ever of any racer. His work today for SPEED is fantastic and he always manages to educate as well as entertain with his race commentary,' said Bill Warner, Concours founder and co-chairman.
The 11th annual Automobiles of Amelia Island auction presented by RM Auctions had a very impressive 83% sales ratio with total sales over $12.5 million. The single day auction offered 107 significant motor cars and a selection of vintage memorabilia to a wide audience of collector car enthusiasts. The overflowing auction room was standing room only for nearly the entire event, plus attracting a large volume of Internet and telephone bids. The Amelia Island vintage car weekend is a permanent and popular fixture on the automotive calendar, and enjoyed national and international attendance,' said Ian Kelleher, President and Chief Operating Officer of RM Auctions. 'Results from our Amelia auction indicate the market remains stable for quality collector cars with continued passion for the hobby from around the world,' he added. The highest sale of the day was for the 1930 Duesenberg Model J Murphy Convertible Coupe which broke the magical million dollar mark at $1,072,500. The second highest sale went to the Packard Panther-Daytona Roadster Concept Car which fetched $700,000. The 1941 Chrysler Newport DC Phaeton sold for $687,500 and a 427 AC Cobra went for $675,000.
First held in 1902, the Philadelphia International Auto Show is no newcomer to the car show business. That said, the relatively small Philly event is not structured in the same way as the largest of international auto shows. Detroit, for instance, features cars and displays supplied directly by the manufacturers, while Philly features a network of local dealers that come in with their cars to produce the show. That local network, called the Automobile Dealers Association of Greater Philadelphia (ADAGP), has been fueling the event since 1997. The Philly show's reliance on car dealers has consistently limited its size and prevented the event from featuring debuts or brand new concept cars. But calling Philly a second-rate show because of this would be missing the point. At the Philadelphia Auto Show, there are no distracting displays, no scantily clad models, no dramatic lights or ostentatious presentations. There are just cars. What could be better than that for a real car enthusiast? Philadelphia's show is a practical one. Last year, 60% of the attendees were in the market for a new car. Of that majority, a full 90% said that the show influenced their car-buying decision. Numbers like these are due to the straight-shooting, no nonsense approach that Philly has been taking for years. This is not a show to come to for sensationalized entertainment. Even with frills like the DUB showcase's DJ and a black-tie gala, Philly is a purpose-built show with an honest demeanor and a character that's plenty endearing in its own right.
National Automotive and Truck Museum of the United States located in Auburn, Indiana is a non-profit museum with emphasis on post World War II cars and trucks but with vehicles on display from 1908 'high wheelers' to current production pick ups. NATMUS is located in the former factory buildings of the Auburn Automobile Company. The Service Building was built in 1923 and was used for test - driving automobiles, factory service and distribution of parts to distributors and dealers all over the world. If a person lived near Auburn and wanted his automobile serviced at the factory, this would be done in the Service Building. When the 810-812 cords were test driven and guaranteed to do over 100 M.P.H., they were tuned, prepared and tested from the Service Building. Each car was provided with a plaque signed by race driver, Ab Jenkins, indicating how fast the car had been driven at the factory. The L29 / Experimental Building was built in 1928-29 and was the first new building that E.L. Cord constructed after he assumed management of the company. Intended for the assembly of the L29 Cord, the upper level of this building was actually used to prepare the L29s for shipment after they were assembled on the Auburn' line.
The recent Automobiles of Arizona event illustrated the continued strength and stability of the global collector car market as RM Auctions presented its 10th annual auction event in Phoenix last week. Held January 16th at the prestigious Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa, it was standing room-only during the single-day event as 122 investment-quality motor cars were presented for auction. The eight-hour sale attracted a record number of bidders from around the world to illustrate continued enthusiasm and interest in the global collector car hobby. As the gavel fell for the final time of the day, total sales surpassed $18 million with a strong sell-through rate of 83 percent of cars sold. 'Overall, our Arizona auction was a very strong sale in terms of sales percentage and was well attended, attracting record bidder registrations . Numerous examples exceeded their pre-sale estimates and many of the cars that some considered to be 'sensitive' in the market sold very well,' said Ian Kelleher, newly appointed President and Chief Operating Officer of RM Auctions.
It was a spectacular array of auctions in Scottsdale, Arizona as the major auctions houses - including Barrett-Jackson, Russo & Steele, Gooding & Company, and RM Auctions -brought a vast assortment of vehicles in hopes of seducing buyers in this unstable economy. Despite the downturns in the stock and housing market, many of the auction houses reported that the number of registered bidders had increased over prior years. From muscle cars to European sports cars, from antiques to classics, modern production cars to customs, and from motorcycles to airplanes, the selection was all encompassing. Russo & Steele had over 500 vehicles at their multi-day, all-reserve auction. There was a very nice assembly of cars from the ‘50 – ‘70s including many high-octane muscle cars. Proving their abilities to cater to a wide audience, they assembled a plethora of European beauties, eye-catching customs, and everything in-between. A very short distance away and having a similar genre, the well-televised Barrett-Jackson auction had the largest audience and the largest number of vehicles, with about 1,050 vehicles. In comparison to last year, they accepted around 10 percent fewer cars. The six day auction moves at a rate of 17 cars an hour on average. Their first three days of sales accounted for more than $17 million dollars. Some of their top sellers included a 1989 Corvette ZR-1 for $176,000 and an Oldsmobile Custom Touring Roadster that sold for $220,000. Barrett-Jackson president Steve Davis answered the question of 'how sales were this year' with one word - 'Awesome!' Craig Jackson, whose father co-founded this event, stated that for the first three-and-a-half days of the auction, they were 'running on average about 10-percent over what we valued the cars.' Forecasted estimates for all six days were around $55 million. Gooding & Company and RM Auctions both had single day auctions with Gooding offering around 100 vehicles while RM having slightly more, at around 120 lots. Both had assembled an exceptional array of vehicles with many in the multi-million dollar and six-figure category. RM went first with Gooding's auction following a day later. RM had the highest bid of all auctions; their 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Roadster took those honors at $5 million dollars. Sadly this was not enough to satisfy its reserve (rumored to be near $7 million). Several of their other high ticket cars failed to sell, though further negotiations may still close the deal. The same holds true for the 1937 Bugatti Type 57SC which peaked at $4.4 million. Their Ferrari 250 GT TdF was estimated to sell for $2.0 - $2.5 million which meant the $1.8 million dollar bid was close, but not enough. A gorgeous Dodge Firearrow III Concept sold for $800,000 and a Ferrari 275 GTB old for $835,000.
Gooding & Company once again delivered the top sale of Arizona Auction Week during their highly anticipated Scottsdale Auction on January 17, 2009. The extremely rare 1960 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider from the newly-discovered VanKregten Estate sold for $4.95 million setting the record for top price of the week at all auctions in the valley as of press time. It is likely the top price ever paid for an un-restored car of its type and represents the second highest price for an individual auction sale in Arizona history. A very original 1937 Talbot-Lago Teardrop Coupe was the week's second highest lot selling for $3.52 million. As the gavel fell for the final time of the day, total sales neared $31.8 million, with seven cars breaking the magic million dollar mark. The average price paid per vehicle was nearly $400,000. Gooding & Company's other top performing lots included the coveted Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance Best of Show-winning 1932 Daimler Double Six Sport Saloon at $2.97 million, a 1929 Duesenberg Model J Dual Cowl Phaeton at $1.375 million, a 1937 Bentley 4 ¼-Litre Fixed Head Sport Coupe at $1.32 million and a 2003 Ferrari Enzo at $1.265 million. The famed 1933 Isotta Fraschini Tipo 8A Dual Cowl Sports Phaeton featured in the film Giant starring James Dean fetched $1.089 million.
Autoshows are a means for the collective automotive production community to showcase their current model line-up and to highlight what they have planned for the future. What has been highly sought-after real-estate in past years, was open and vacant this year, as several prominent manufacturers were surprisingly absent. Their decisions to skip this event were many, such as financial and political reasons, and they were sorely missed. The Cobo Conference center felt vacant; the press conferences were fewer, attendance was lower, and the number of new concepts and debuts all decreased. Those automakers in attendance did things much differently this year. The booths, displays, high tech lights, sound systems, and amenities commonly found in prior years were no more. With many questions lingering around the multi-billion dollar bail-out, it was clear that automakers were playing it safe, and keeping spending to a minimum. Most of the news centered on fuel economy and small vehicles. Only a few dared to mention anything to do with super or muscle cars. Ford mentioned their Shelby Mustang GT500 during their press conference. Seated in the passengers seat was Carroll Shelby himself, who was celebrating another birthday. Mercedes-Benz had their new McLaren SLR Stirling Moss edition. This was easily the most exciting and breath-taking vehicle of the show. Lots of power, sensational looks, an impractical windscreen, and a price tag to match - it was everything one might expect from a super car.