Far away from the Scottsdale, Arizona Barrett-Jackson action, a private auction along Florida's gulf coast sets a record of its own.
Some people just have way too much money. The new Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe, as evidence of this, comes with a lung-emptying $405,000 price tag. I hope to one day own a house that costs that much and, with the current rate of inflation, it may come with a two-spaceship garage. Hence my surprise when I saw the e-mail subject this morning: "FIRST US PHANTOM DROPHEAD COUPÉ; AUCTIONED FOR $2 MILLION." That's about five times the base price. It's a Bugatti Veyron plus $700,000. Holy crap.
The first U.S. example of the finest open-air cruiser around was sold to a resident of Naples, Florida at the seventh-annual Naples Winter Wine festival and yes, the $1.6 million dollars left after the car is paid for go to charity. The Naples Children and Educational Fund will get the big check and invest it into "improving the physical, emotional, and educational lives of underprivileged and at-risk children." Rolls-Royce reports that the winning bid was the highest for one single car in the festival's history, and that it may be the most ever paid for a new car in the United States. In addition to bragging rights for being the at the top of the automotive high-roller world, the buyer gets to cut in front of a whole year's worth of a wait list. It's just like when I was student of the week back in first grade, except the line to go outside for recess is replaced by the line for a V-12 powered yacht on wheels.;