BIG NAMES FOR SALE
ALMOST 200 rare, collectible, exotic, vintage and classic cars, motorcycles and a cavalcade of Ferraris welcomed attendees at this year’s Motorclassica, held at the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne. Headlining the ninth Motorclassica was a sea of prancing horses on display to celebrate Ferrari’s 70th anniversary.
The gaggle of Maranello masterpieces valued at over $40 million, included several F40s, an F50, an early 195 EL, 308s, 360s and 430s, a 288 GTO, an Enzo and a very rare AUD$12 million La Ferrari Aperta.
As the doors were about to close on its Adelaide plant, General Motors was honouring 100 years since the first Holden-bodied car was made in Australia, displaying over 30 cars including the futuristic Hurricane, sporty GTR-X and stunning Effijy concept cars, while giving show goers their first look at the 2018 imported Commodore, a V6 all-wheel drive VXR model.
Mercedes-Benz was also celebrating the 50th anniversary of its go-fast division, AMG, with the debut of the E63 S 4MATIC+ and the AMG GTR alongside the original Stuttgart-stormer, the C36 from 1995, the first jointly developed production model by Benz and AMG.
Lancia was another Italian marque celebrating a birthday, its 110th in fact and the array of Lancias dating back to the 1900s was headlined by the 1923 Lancia Lambda Torpedo.
Saturday evening saw all eyes turn to the Motorclassica auction and the mouthwatering array of precious metal being offered. Taking centre stage was a 1955 Jaguar D-Type, once owned by Bib Stillwell and one-time saviour and owner of Aston Martin, Victor Gauntlett, as well as 1953 Le Mans winner, Duncan Hamilton. The green D-Type, bearing chassis number XKD 510 was the first ever customercar and one of 54 made.
While bidding was strong for the well-pedigreed D-Type, Jaguar’s first pure competition car developed specifically to win the Le Mans 24 Hours, the highest offer on the night was $5.5 million.
Upstaging the D-Type and much other exotica on the night was one of the smallest cars to go under the hammer, an original, concours 1969 Mini Cooper S. It sold for $91,650 (inc buyer premium), one of the highest prices on the night.
Other solid results included $241,000 for a 1958 Lister Jaguar ‘Knobbly’ replica and $76,375 (inc buyer premium) for a 1999 Subaru WRX STI, stored for the past 15-years with 7,000km on the clock. Unique Cars very own long-time vintage and veteran expert David Berthon won the ultimate car collector accolade, 'Best in Show' at the Australian Concours d’Elegance, for his superbly restored 1913 RollsRoyce Silver Ghost, one of six remaining built to 1913 Spanish GP winning spec.
It is fitting reward for David who has toiled for 15-years to bring the Silver Ghost back to better than new condition.
Accepting the award David said, “The reaction to the car from the public all weekend has been fantastic, that’s been the thrill for me, and this award is cream on the cake.”
European brands were well represented, including the old and the not so old, from the affordable category right up to the kings-ransom numbers.