Gooding scores $44 million result in first overseas auction

London sale hits records for highest average price per car, with just 14 sold, and highest price for any Bugatti

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This 1934 Bugatti Type 59 Sports now hold the record as highest priced Bugatti sold at auction | Gooding photos

Gooding & Company’s first auction outside of the United States, The Passion of a Lifetime sale in London, resulted in more than £34 million ($44 million) total for just 14 cars out of the 15 offered, plus a world auction record for highest average price per car  and the highest price paid at auction for any Bugatti.

The auction of collector cars from a single owner was held at the historic Hampton Court Palace in conjunction with the annual Concours of Elegance.  On-site attendance was limited because of pandemic restrictions, with much of the bidding done online or by phone.

The average price per car was £2,432,064 ($3,151,607), with eight cars selling for more than £1 million ($1.3 million).  All results include auction fees.

The 1937 Bugatti Type 57S Atalante was another top seller

The highlight of the auction was the sale of the unique 1934 Bugatti Type 59 Sports, which became the most valuable Bugatti ever sold at auction at £9,535,000 ($12,356,000), even with it falling slightly short of the pre-auction estimate “in excess” of £10 million ($13.1 million).

Another fabulous Bugatti, the 1937 Type 57S Atalante, was next highest, sold for £7,855,000 ($10,179,000), followed by a 1928 Bugatti Type 35C Grand Prix, sold for £3,935,000 ($5,099,000). A 1971 Lamborghini Miura P400 SV Speciale sold for £3,207,000 ($4,156,000). 

The only no-sale of the auction was that of a stunning 1961 Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato, when bidding failed to reach the multi-million-dollar reserve price.

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1924 Vauxhall 30-98 Type OE Wensum

Among the six auction records set, including the one for Bugatti, was the highest price paid for any Vauxhall, with the 1924 Vauxhall 30-98 OE-Type Wensum sold for £1,247,000 ($1,616,000). 

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“It has been our distinct pleasure to work with our consignor to pass these beautiful cars on to their new owners,” David Gooding, found and president of the auction company, said in a news release. “Witnessing our team set six records at our premiere UK sale was exhilarating.

“A private collection of this quality is rarely offered for sale anywhere, and we are immensely proud of these exceptional results.” 

The 14 cars sold at the Passion of a Lifetime auction, in descending order of price achieved, were:

1934 Bugatti Type 59 Sports, sold for £9,535,000 ($12,356,000)

1937 Bugatti Type 57S Atalante, sold for £7,855,000 ($10,179,000)

1928 Bugatti Type 35C Grand Prix, sold for £3,935,000 ($5,099,000)

1971 Lamborghini Miura P400 SV Speciale, sold for £3,207,000 ($4,156,000)  

1955 Aston Martin DB3S, sold for £3,011,000 ($3,902,000)

1935 Aston Martin Ulster, sold for £1,583,000 ($2,051,000)

1924 Vauxhall 30-98 OE-Type Wensum, sold for £1,247,000 ($1,616,000)  

1919 Rolls-Royce 40/50 HP Silver Ghost Alpine Eagle Tourer, sold for £1,023,000 ($3,256,000)

1955 Lancia Aurelia B24S Spider America, sold for £709,400 ($919,281)

1939 Bentley 4 1/4 Litre Cabriolet, £517,500 ($670,606)

1924 Lancia Lambda 3rd Series Torpédo, £391,000 ($506,680)

1965 Lamborghini 350 GT, £379,500 ($491,778)

1927 Bentley 3 Litre Speed Model Sports Tourer, sold for £345,000 ($447,070)

1959 Lancia Flaminia 2500 Sport, sold for £310,500 ($402,364)

(All results include auction fees)

Gooding’s next auction is a Geared Online internet sale with bidding taking place October 26-30.  For more information, visit the Gooding website.

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.

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