Bonhams Amelia Island auctions 2015 – results & analysis

By Edward Legge | Classic car auctions & analysis | 0 Comments

Bonhams’ first auction at Amelia island – but was it a success?

As a newcomer to the annual Amelia Island event Bonhams were always going to be playing something of a second fiddle to the established players from over the water. Ultimately RM Sothebys and Gooding & Co eclipsed Bonhams’ achievements if you simply go by the numbers but hey, it’s not a competition is it?

What did well?

A 1980 Ferrari  512 BB predictably smashed a lowball pre-sale estimate of  £67-100,000 finding a reasonable £218,000 + 10% premium. A 1952 Alfa Romeo 1900 C Sprint Coupe  made a stunning £253,000 + premium against a top estimate of £170,000 no doubt assisted by Mille Miglia eligibility. The 1908 American Underslung 50hp roadster continued the marques recent auction success, making just over £1 million and Bonhams did well with early and pre-war cars such as the 1912 Peerless Model 60 Runabout and 1935 Auburn model 851 custom Phaeton exceeding expectations.  A 1981 BMW M1 coupe kept the Eighties cars’ end up, unsurprisingly (to us anyway) exceeding its £270-300,000 estimate to find £370,00 + 10% premium.

American Underslung


What didn’t do so well?

A 1975 Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 MFI sold for £164,000 against an estimate of £190-230 – these cars are still not matching the expectations of many, in our opinion. A  1968 Porsche 911L soft-window Targa  was bid just past £30,000 and remained unsold, and a 1997 Porsche 911 Turbo with less than 15000 original miles just made it through its lower estimate of £120,000 at £127,000 – Turbos did much better in the following sales. No sale for a 1973 Ferrari  365GTB/4 Daytona and 1992 Ferrari F40 – the last US spec car built – made £700,000 + premium against a lower estimate of £800,000.  A  1971 Ferrari Dino 246 GT found a mere £180,000 + premium against a predicted £190-210,000.

Bonhams Ferrari Dino

Porsche 911 2.7 MFI


Patterns and trends

Tough to pick out at this auction but suffice to say that the main pattern was unpredictability! Some pre-war cars did well but one swallow doesn’t make a summer. As with the other auctions, with Porsche and Ferrari some of the heat has come out of certain models so choose wisely – early Porsche has slowed down as have some V12 Ferrari’s – at auction at least. It is worth noting that there wee a number of post-auction sales and results that did not ultimately go through.

We did notice that Bonhams have sold less cars in estimate than they have managed historically – see the infographic below. Are they finding business in the US tougher than before?


You can see our pre-auction picks below.

Follow Classic and Sports Finance’s board Bonhams Amelia Island auction ’15 – cars to watch. on Pinterest.


The numbers


Total lots 83
Sold lots 63 75.90%
Unsold lots 20 24.10%
Sold over estimate 11 13.25%
Sold under estimate 36 43.37%
Sold in lower half of estimate 8 9.64%
Sold in upper half of estimate 7 8.43%
Sold in lower half of estimate or below 44 53.01%
Sold in upper half of estimate or above 18 21.69%
Sold at median estimate 0 0.00%
Sold within estimate – ACCURACY 15 18.07%

Click here for full results with estimates and heatmap.

Bonhams Auctions results Amelia Island 2015

Image credit – Bonhams

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