High bids fall short but RM Sotheby’s still does nearly $30 million at Villa Erba

High bids fall short but RM Sotheby’s still does nearly $30 million at Villa Erba

With 33 of 38 vehicles selling RM Sotheby’s annual Villa Erba sale, held in conjunction with the Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este, generated more than $29.9 million.

543 was the last Touring-bodied 212 Export Barchetta and ran the Targa Florio and Mille Miglia | Tim Scott Fluid Images photos

543 was the last Touring-bodied 212 Export Barchetta and ran the Targa Florio and Mille Miglia | Tim Scott Fluid Images photos

With 33 of 38 vehicles selling — among the no-sales the highest bid of the auction — RM Sotheby’s annual Villa Erba sale, held in conjunction with the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, generated more than $29.9 million in two-and-a-half hours Saturday on the shores of Italy’s Lake Como.

As expected, Ferraris dominated the sale with a 1952 Ferrari 212 Export Barchetta. Bidding on the car opened at 3 million euro and the car sold for an auction-record 6.72 million euro ($7,526,400), including buyer’s premium.

1952 Ferrari 212 Export Barchetta drives across the bidding block

1952 Ferrari 212 Export Barchetta drives across the bidding block

That figure wasn’t the highest bid of the day, however. Later, a 1960 250 GT short-wheelbase Berlinetta Competizione was bid to $10.192 million, and then bidding on a 1961 250 GT SWB California Spider reached $11.48 million. Neither high bid was enough to get the job done.

Had those figures been accepted, the auction’s sales total would have exceeded $55 million when the buyer’s premiums were included.

“We had another incredible collection of cars on offer at Villa Erba,” Max Girardo, auctioneer and managing director of RM Sotheby’s Europe, said in a news release. “It’s always a stylish and well-attended sale; the setting, the atmosphere and the quality of vehicles we consistently consign to this auction make it a clear highlight of the European auction calendar.”

Bidders and spectators take a close look at the cars

Bidders and spectators take a close look at the cars

The auction included bidders from 26 nations, with 27 percent of those bidding being first-time clients at RM Sotheby’s.

As RM Sotheby’s noted in its post-sale news release, “The sale also underlined the continuing rise of the ‘modern era’ supercars with an incredible ‘full house’ of ultimate Ferraris selling very strongly and each achieving seven figures. It is rare to be able to offer all the classic Ferrari hypercars in one auction, so the collection garnered significant interest and highly spirited bidding.

“Highlighting the group was a 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO, the spiritual successor to the 250 GTO, which sold for an exceptional €1,904,000 ($2,132,480), while the 1991 F40, one of the most celebrated high-performance supercars ever built, sold for €1,008,000 ($1,128,960). The group also included a 1996 F50 for €1,232,000 ($1,411,200) and a 2002 Enzo for €1,260,000 ($2,132,480). Proving that it’s not just Ferraris that collectors queue up to buy, the car which many regard as the world’s first true ‘supercar’, the 1971 Lamborghini Miura P400 S, also attracted significant interest, garnering a strong €1,019,200 ($2,141,504).”

Here are the top-10 sales in dollars:

  1. 1952 Ferrari 212 Export Barchetta, $7,526,400
  2. 1963 Ferrari 250 GT/L Berlinetta Lusso, $2,257,920
  3. 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO, $2,132,480
  4. 1960 Ferrari 250 GT Cabriolet Series II, $1,756,160
  5. 2002 Ferrari Enzo, $2,132,480
  6. 1996 Ferrari F50, $1,411,200
  7. 1953 Fiat 8V Cabriolet, $1,254,400
  8. 1971 Lamborghini Miura P400 S, $2,141,504
  9. 1991 Ferrari F40, $1,128,960
  10. 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS 2.7 sport lightweight, $1,128,960

(All sales results include auction fees)

1949 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 SS Villa d'Este coupe is elegance in motion

1949 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 SS Villa d’Este coupe is elegance in motion

Other sales of note included a 1949 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 SS Villa d’Este coupe going for $878,080, well beyond its high pre-auction estimated value; a pistachio green and Ferrari-powered 1974 Lancia Stratos HF Stradale bringing $482,944; and a two-owner 2007 Ferrari 599 GTB HGTE getting $401,408, well beyond its pre-auction estimated high, which RM Sotheby’s sees as an indication that this model likely is a “certain future collectible.”

Has Ferrari 599 GTB HGTE become a future collectible?

Has Ferrari 599 GTB HGTE become a future collectible?

Meanwhile, a 1959 Riva Florida “Nounours” delivered new to Brigitte Bardot sold for $163,800, again well beyond its pre-auction estimate, and the sale of a BMW K1 motorcycle sold to benefit Caritas International’s support of earthquake relief in Nepal generated nearly $12,000, twice as much as the bike’s retail sales value.

RM Sotheby’s next European sale is September 7 at Battersea Evolution in London in conjunction with the Royal Concours of Elegance.

In the meantime, RM Sotheby’s has sales July 25 at Plymouth, Michigan, and August 14-15 at Monterey, California.

 

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