Worldwide Auctioneers, which held its 2021 Scottsdale Auction virtually from the company’s Auburn, Indiana, home base, reported that bidders purchased 93 percent of the 60 collector cars offered entirely online this year because of the pandemic.
While Worldwide did not provide a total-results amount for the January 23 sale held during a COVID-restricted Arizona Auction Week, it was pegged at $4.9 million by Hagerty, the classic car insurance and valuation company that regularly compiles and reports results for major auctions.
Leading the top sellers at Worldwide was a full-classic 1934 Packard Twelve 1107 Phaeton, an exceptional example that notably carried President Franklin D. Roosevelt in a Chicago parade. The striking green 4-door sold for a record $571,500.
Another record sale was made for a 1947 Mercury Series 79M wood-body station wagon equipped with Marmon-Herrington 4-wheel drive. The off-road equipped wagon sold for $346,000.
“This was a rare opportunity to acquire a hard-to-find, prize-winning automobile, and it hammered sold for a resounding, record-breaking price, proving that in spite of today’s challenging circumstances the market for really great cars is as strong as ever,” Rod Egan, principal and chief auctioneer, said in a news release.
An as-new 1996 Dodge Viper GTS driven just 22 miles set yet another auction record at $122,080, the highest price ever achieved for the model.
A piece of retro TV magic came in the form of a 1979 Chevrolet “A-Team” van, one of only six officially licensed by Universal Studios to Hollywood Productions Inc. for promotion of the ‘80s action-adventure series.
The distinctive van sold for $84,000 after a fun session of competitive bidding, according to Worldwide, with proceeds benefiting the J. Kruse Education Center, which provides career pathway development to students and transitioning veterans.
Arizona Auction Week is normally a jam-packed collector car celebration, with tens of thousands of fans crowding into the Phoenix/Scottsdale area to buy, sell or just enjoy the spectacle. In January 2020, a record eight auction companies held sales during the week.
This year was decidedly different because of COVID-19 restrictions. Worldwide was one of four auction companies holding collector car sales during a scaled-back Arizona Auction Week, two of them live/online sales held in Scottsdale and two, such as Worldwide, as online auctions at remote locations. Two others, the flagship Barrett-Jackson auction and Russo and Steele, postponed their sales until March, while Leake and MAC cancelled their events.
“We extend sincere thanks to all of those who were flexible enough to pivot with us in these exceptional times, and whether virtually or in person, help us make this year’s Scottsdale Auction here in Auburn such a great experience,” said John Kruse, Worldwide principal and auctioneer.
Of the auction companies doing business during Arizona Auction Week, RM Sotheby’s was the champion with reported sales of more than $35 million for its live/online sale, Bonhams tallied $5.89 million for its live/online sale – both of those held in Scottsdale – while Gooding & Company had sales of $7.1 million for its all-online sale.
The total for the week was about $52.9 million, pending additional post-auction sales. While that’s only about 20 percent of the take for Arizona Auction Week 2020, there were twice as many auctions happening last year including Barrett-Jackson, which alone totaled $141 million.
Worldwide Auctioneers had a major business development this week with the announcement that the company has been acquired by Perpetual Industries, an Indiana-based technology and innovation group. The plan is to continue Worldwide auctions as usual with the backing of Perpetual.
“Worldwide will continue to be led by principals Rod Egan and John Kruse and operate independently under the Worldwide Auctioneers brand as a wholly owned subsidiary of Perpetual, driving forward with a continued focus on its mission, customers and community,” Perpetual Industries said in its acquisition announcement.
The top-10 sales for Worldwide’s Scottsdale Auction, as reported by Hagerty, are:
|1. 1934 Packard Twelve-Series 1107 Phaeton sold for $571,500|
|2. 1947 Mercury Series 79M station wagon sold for $346,000|
|3. 1963 Chevrolet Corvette resto mod split-window coupe sold for $240,800|
|4. 2014 Ferrari F12 Berlinetta coupe sold for $218,400|
|5. 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air resto mod convertible sold for $156,800|
|6. 1934 Cadillac Model 370D Fleetwood (Vee Windshield) Convertible Sedan w/Divider, 5-p sold for $140,000|
|7. 1942 Mercury Model 29A station wagon sold for $134,400|
|8. 1936 Cord 810 convertible phaeton sedan sold for $131,600|
|9. 1933 LaSalle Series 345-C Fisher convertible coupe sold for $123,200|
|10. 1996 Dodge Viper GTS coupe sold for $122,080|
For more information about Worldwide auctions and results, visit the company website.