Editor’s note: The ClassicCars.com Journal will be covering all of the action during Arizona Auction Week in Scottsdale, Arizona. Check out our other coverage here.
The upcoming Barrett-Jackson collector car sale in Scottsdale, Arizona will offer 1,800 cars with no reserve price, a figure the company claims is the largest on record for a single auction.
“With over 1,800 cars set to cross the block, this is will be our largest consignment in history,” Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson, said in a news release. “It’s an honor that a record number of our customers have consigned their collector cars for this month’s Scottsdale Auction.”
A car with no reserve means it does not have a minimum price threshold that must be met for the car to sell.
All the cars will be auctioned off over a six-day span, with the first hammer falling on Monday. That will be preceded by a preview weekend that includes family ticket deals. Tens of thousands were expected to pour through the gates when they open Saturday, Jackson said. The event runs January 12-20.
Collector cars — and memorabilia — are the focus of the event, but there are a lot of other attractions. The auction venue, WestWorld of Scottsdale, was opened to media on Tuesday. There were slews of vendors and exhibitors setting up. It seemed everything from burgers and beer to custom signs and patio furniture would be available to attendees.
Numerous celebrities will be in attendance — both on the block and in the crowd — and symposia on car restoration, buying trends and other topics will be held throughout the week.
Oh, and bullfighting. You read that correctly: In a pavilion just off the auction block, car lovers can catch some freestyle bullfighting (no bulls are injured, unlike bullfighting in other countries) on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.
But, like we said, cars will be the main focus of the event; some spectacular cars, to be frank. We’ve been highlighting some of the top vehicles on offer for nearly a month and there were even more that are worth a mention on display Tuesday.
One such vehicle is a custom 1981 Jeep CJ7 built for actor Gary Sinise’s foundation, which benefits the families of America’s military and first responders. Multiple cars, like this one, will be offered during the auction with proceeds going to their respective charities.
Parked relatively nearby was a 1961 Porsche 356B that looked to be in immaculate condition, despite nearly 76,000 miles on the odometer. Most of the original structure and sheet metal was retained during a restoration by the owner, a longtime Germany collector.
The black paint — which gleamed under the lights — was set off nicely by the upgraded tan interior.
If American muscle is more your speed, Barrett-Jackson has more than enough on offer. Dodge Chargers and Ford Mustangs abound, but this ’70 Mustang Boss 302 fastback drew a small crowd. Refinished in the original Bright Yellow, the car has a Shaker hood and retained the numbers-matching 302cid engine.
A Limelight Green 1970 Plymouth Superbird, complete with massive spoiler and even the original battery, was eye-catching. The car designed for NASCAR homologation also still has its original 440cid V8 under the hood.
Arguably one of the most absurd cars at Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale sale is a 2014 Mercedes-Benz G36 6×6. Very few of the massive vehicles were brought to the United States, which makes it fairly valuable — a Barrett-Jackson spokesman said it could fetch more than $1 million.
The huge SUV — it stands nearly 8 feet tall and 19 feet long — is powered by a twin-turbo 5.5-liter V8 AMG engine capable of making 536 horsepower, every bit of which will be needed to get the 9,050-pound vehicle moving.
One big potential storyline that could emerge at Scottsdale is the prices commanded by Japanese cars. A 2001 Acura NSX with VIN 00001 will be on the docket, but more notable is a 2012 Lexus LFA Nurburgring Edition. A similar supercar fetched $770,000 at Barrett-Jackson’s Palm Beach sale, but the Scottsdale car could top the $1 million mark.
Another interesting Japanese car is a nearly all-original 1990 Toyota Sera. Fewer than 16,000 were made between 1990 and 1995. This is one of the first produced and was brought to the United States a few years ago after exceeding the 25-year import restriction set by the federal government.
This one is a right-hand drive and has the stock gullwing doors, a design that was mimicked by supercar designer McLaren for the F1.
Buyers will have a shot at plenty of great classic cars, but there are certainly some odd ones in the mix as well. Amid all the muscle and gleaming paint sat this 1972 Fiat 500L. The slide-top coupe, which is looks absurdly small after seeing the massive Mercedes, is less than 10 feet long but supposedly has room for four in its Gucci interior.
Whether the 500cc 2-cylinder engine can handle four people is another matter.
After all my wandering, I thought I should mention which car I would take home if I had some extra cash in my pocket. Though I was rather taken with a 1978 Volkswagen Beetle convertible (what can I say, I have a thing for German classics), what really caught my eye was a 1984 Chevrolet K10 pickup.
The barn find is all-original and equipped with the Scottsdale trim, which just seems fitting. Maybe I should apply to be a bidder…