Prestige cars in the red
They’re hammering luxury at auction houses, writes NEILMcDONALD
FANCY a half-price you’re just too late. Last week’s Pickles auction in Sydney sold a late-model Ferrari GTB with just 2293km on the clock for $355,000.
That’s compared with the new car price of $600,000.
But Pickles branch manager Steve Allen says there will be more bargains as the rush of luxury and exotic cars continue to flood auction houses as owners offload their status symbols. ‘‘There will be opportunities out there,’’ he says.
Pickles holds several prestige auctions a year. At last week’s event more than $4.5 million worth of cars went under the hammer.
Apart from the Ferrari there were other rich pickings. A 2006 $256,000 Aston Martin Vantage sold for $162,000, and a 2008 Porsche 911 Turbo all-wheel-drive fetched $280,000, saving $47,000 on the new price.
Even home-grown performance cars were up for grabs.
A 2007 Ford Performance Vehicles F6 Typhoon fetched $38,500, not bad when new it cost $63,310. Apart from Pickles, GraysOnline and ManheimFowles are reporting a lift vin distressed prestige sales by finance companies and cash-strapped owners as the economic crisis bites.
For the managing director of GraysOnline, Cameron Poolman, the economic downturn is proving a boon.
He says the traffic on Grays’ site had increased more than 25 per cent since the economy took a dive.
‘‘We expect that it will continue to rise,’’ he says. ‘‘People are still looking to buy but they’ll try to get it at a reduced price.’’
Poolman says GraysOnline has helped take out the middle-man and dealers.
‘‘We really want the end user, the consumer,’’ he says.
The economic squeeze is also causing a rebound in used-car prices.
Prices are being driven up as owners hold on to their cars longer, according to Redbook director Max Perry.
‘‘We’re certainly seeing a lift in values,’’ Perry says.
Rising used-car prices are compounded by the 20 per cent slump in new car sales.