HomeThe MarketRM Sotheby’s announces new venue for Arizona Auction Week in January

RM Sotheby’s announces new venue for Arizona Auction Week in January

Coronavirus restrictions mandate changes for annual collector car sales events


Arizona Auction Week for January 2021 remains a moving target as pandemic restrictions effect nearly every aspect of the annual extravaganza of collector car buying and selling. 

RM Sotheby’s became the latest auction company to announce sweeping changes to its sale, which for the past 21 years has taken place at the historic Arizona Biltmore Resort in Phoenix.  But the January auction for 2021 will be held at a different location for the first time: the OTTO Car Club, a collector car storage and event center in north Scottsdale. 

The one-day sale scheduled for Friday, January 22, will include 80 “blue-chip” collector cars, RM Sotheby’s says, and will be a live on-site auction with attendance limited to registered bidders only, while featuring enhanced features for bidding online, by phone and absentee.

The OTTO Car Club will be the site of RM Sotheby’s Arizona auction | OTTO Car Club photo

In January 2020 – shortly before the coronavirus began circling the globe – a record 8 separate car auctions were held in the Scottsdale/Phoenix area, dominated by the massive Barratt-Jackson event at WestWorld.  But it likely will be a very different scene come January.

Barrett-Jackson’s signature home-base auction is typically the highest-attendance US collector car auction of the year, with hundreds of thousands of spectators joining thousands of bidders and consigners in a crowded festival atmosphere.

But as seen in the Scottsdale company’s recent Fall Auction at WestWorld – which was added in lieu of regularly scheduled 2020 auctions that had been cancelled – restrictions imposed to deter the spread of the virus reduced the number of people who could attend.

Gooding & Company announced last week that its Scottsdale auction would not even be held in Scottsdale but conducted instead entirely on the internet via the company’s Geared Online platform. 

Other announcements from auction companies are expected during the coming weeks about changes and possible cancellations.  Arizona Auction Week is second in collector car sales only to Monterey Car Week, normally held in August but cancelled in its entirety for 2020, including the iconic Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance that was to celebrate its 70th anniversary.

In making its venue-change announcement, RM Sotheby’s noted two significant Ferraris among early consignments for the auction, led by a 2003 Ferrari Enzo in Giallo Modena (yellow) showing just under 12,000 miles from new and presented in original condition, and valued at $2.25 million to $2.5 million.

The Ferrari 250 GT is a rare example of an alloy Boano-bodied coupe | RM Sotheby’s

The other is a “low roof” 1956 Ferrari 250 GT Alloy Coupe (chassis no. 0613) coachbuilt by Felice Mario Boano in 1957, one of just 14 alloy-bodied coupes produced by Boano between 1956 and 1958. With racing history and its original V12 drivetrain, the 250 GT is value at $1.2 million to $1.4 million.

 “Our annual Arizona auction has long been known for offering hard-to-find and highly sought-after cars, and 2021 will continue that tradition this year’s sale but with a new venue and format compared to previous years,” said Gord Duff, global head of auctions for RM Sotheby’s. “The two Ferraris – 2003 Enzo and 1956 250 GT Alloy Coupe – are both fantastic examples, each representing very different, but important moments in the marque’s history.

“I am equally thrilled to announce that our 2021 Arizona auction will be held at the OTTO Car Club in Scottsdale, Arizona. The 49,000- square-foot facility is a sleek and modern facility that will allow clients to preview auction cars by appointment only in a controlled and safe atmosphere as we look to improve, refine and lead in the live and online auction business for 2021.”

For more information, visit the RM Sotheby’s website.

Bob Golfen
Bob Golfen
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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