What can we learn from the 2015 Arizona sales about the classic car market as a whole?
Sell through rate – ranged from 85 – 90% which is in line with expectation and a little better than the previous year.
Sold over estimate – ranged from 9-13%. Based on monitored auction results in 2014 we’d expect an average of around 12%.
Sold under estimate – 46-52%. Based on monitored auction results in 2014 we’d expect just under 30%.
Sold in lower half of estimate or less – 65/66/67%. Based on monitored auction results in 2014 we’d expect an average of around 40%. This was the trend that really made us sit up. The auction houses were with a 2% range which is far higher than we have seen in auctions previously.
Sold in upper half of estimate or above – 19-20% which is the expected average.
In summary, cars didn’t make what was expected by the auction houses and this was certainly more than a blip. Around 50% of cars sold beneath the lower estimate and nearly 70% sold in the bottom half of the auction house estimate or less compared to our expectation of 40%. We’d put this down to a combination of over-enthusiastic estimates and “disciplined” bidding rather than falling prices. Prices are holding up and are broadly in line with the dealer prices we see in the UK. With a 90% sell through rate there was certainly no shortage of buyers although we dare say that some of the sellers might have been disappointed…. As expected, the best cars really are beginning to get some distance between them and the rest of the pack.
There is a lot of information, so we recommend looking at our full results and heatmap which gives an at-a-glance view of how the auction houses did.
Let’s take a look at some of the key cars
Lamborghini Miura – all three Miura’s sold under estimate with the S’s making approximately £650,000 to £750,000
Ferrari Dino – 2 went unsold, 5 sold under estimate, 1 sold in the lower half of it’s estimate. Prices from £252,000 to £312,000, with an average price of £270,000 inc premium.
Lamborghini Countach – all three sold under or in the bottom half of their estimate. We won’t comment on the prices because the cars were so varied.
Ferrari 275 – 275’s were big news in 2014 and there were ten available for sale in Arizona – those cars that sold were trending below estimate but prices remain high.
Ferrari 250 – two made over estimate, three sold under estimate, 3 remained unsold. Plenty to choose from.
Mercedes Benz 300SL – 4 went unsold, 5 sold under estimate and only one exceeded its estimate. Average price for a Gullwing was £940,000 and a roadster £810,000 (approximately) – strong prices but behind estimates.
Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 RS – neither car sold. The last three offered at auction have now gone unsold with the most recent sales price at auction £370,000 + premium.
Ferrari 288 GTO made an impressive £1.8 million – a £300,000 improvement on the car sold by Bonhams in November 2014.
The auction house PR machines kept on rolling