As expected, the exquisite 1937 Talbot-Lago T150-C-SS Teardrop Coupe was by far the most-valuable collector car offered during Amelia Island car week.
The Talbot, with an aerodynamic body by Figoni et Falaschi, reached an impressive $13,485,480 (including auction fee), the only 8-figure sale among the three Amelia Island auctions and the highest price ever paid for a French car at auction.
The Teardrop Coupe was sold by Gooding & Company, and it made up a good chunk of the $66.534 million in sales achieved in the one-day sale of 91 vehicles out of 99 offered. The previous auction record for a French car also was held by Gooding, which sold a historic 1934 Bugatti Type 59 Sports in 2020 at Amelia for $12.68 million.
The streamlined Talbot is widely considered to be among the most-beautiful automobiles in history, created by Talbot-Lago company owner Anthony Lago and acclaimed designer Joseph Figoni. This Teardrop Coupe is not only among just a handful built but one of only two produced with all four wheels fully covered, considered to be the coup de grace for the beautiful design.
“The wholly unprecedented offering captivated each and every gaze in the room when the elegant, timeless beauty graced the auction stage before being sent off to its next fortunate custodian,” Gooding said in a news release about the sale.
The Teardrop Coupe was previously a longtime part of the Nethercutt Collection, which commissioned its restoration, leading to a First in Class award at the 2005 Pebble Beach concours d’Elegance.
The overall auction result was the highest to date for the California company’s annual Florida sales. The auction had 19 cars sell for more than a million dollars, including the Talbot, with quite a few significant records broken. Aside from the Talbot-Lago’s French-car record, these included:
• The much-watched 1967 Toyota-Shelby 2000 GT, a Carroll Shelby-tweaked race car that sold for $2,535,000, a world record for the most-valuable Japanese car sold at auction.
• A 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 split-window coupe, sold for $1,242,500, a world record for the Z06 model year 1963.
• A 1954 Bentley R-Type Continental fastback, sold for $2,975,000, a world record for the model.
• A 1998 RUF Turbo R Limited, sold for $2,040,000, a world record for the famed Porsche modifier.
• A 2005 Porsche Carrera GT, sold for $2,012,500, a world record for the model.
The Porsche brand comprised about a third of all the cars offered at the Amelia auction, and 100 percent of them sold. Gooding has become well-known for its diverse selections of the German sports cars, often achieving record prices.