Auctions

Six of Our Favorite Cars from RM Sotheby’s 2017 Paris Sale

Something old, something new

RM Sotheby’s 2017 Paris sale was a success, with the majority of the 78 available cars going home with new owners. Keeping with the theme of the associated Retromobile auto show, the sales docket was eclectic and varied, giving us a great cross-section of the collector market. Here are six of our favorite cars that RM Sotheby’s sold in Paris:

2003 Aston Martin DB7 Zagato

Sold for $416,088

The Aston Martin market is always an interesting case study in perceived value. While Astons produced before the mid-1970s almost always claim big figures at auctions, modern Astons have seriously struggled to command a fraction of the original purchase price. DB7s from the 90s and early 2000s are a perfect example, often changing hands for around $30,000, depending on the model and condition.

Bucking the trend, RM sold this fabulous 2003 Aston Martin DB7 Zagato for a whopping $416,000, nearly matching the sale of a 1966 Aston Martin DB6 Vantage. If you’re rushing out to snap up that cheap DB7 sitting in the local used car lot in hopes of flipping it for cash, slow down. This megabucks sale price is thanks to this example being the first of just 99 cars and is not reflective of regular DB7 prices.

As a bonus, the first Aston Martin V12 Zagato was up for grabs as well, claiming around $796,000 when the hammer fell.

1970 Lamborghini Jarama 400 GT

Sold for $136,714

We reported on this boxy Jarama during the sale preview and after a sale price of just $136,000, we’re just as smitten with this obscure Lambo as before.

With most early Lambos claiming seven figures at public sales, this Gandini-designed coupe is still relatively unloved. This silver example is just one of 177, so it’s not wanting for rarity. RM expected a final sale price around $187,000, so the winning bidder got a screaming deal.

2016 Porsche 911 R

Sold for $546,936

Are you surprised? You shouldn’t be. If you’ve followed Porsche prices for the past few years, you’d know the German automaker has enjoyed some seriously inflated market prices, causing some buyers to sell their dealer allotment for double or triple the value of the car before they even place the order.

Released earlier last year, the 911 R was the most hotly anticipated 911 in years. When you have fairly standard GT3 RS’ changing hands for double the MSRP, the 911 R was a shoo-in for triple values.

If you think prices will cap here, think again. We’ll see seven-figure 911 R sales before long.

1957 Lancia Appia GT Zagato

Sold for $202,128

You don’t have to have massive engines and big power to attract bidder interest. This tiny little Lancia Appia is proof, selling for a very respectable $202,000. The funky little sports coupe finds motivation from Lancia’s 1.1-liter V-4, providing around 50 rip-snorting horses

As RM Sotheby’s notes, this is a perfect contender for vintage racing all over the globe, including the vaunted Mille Miglia revival.

2011 Ferrari 599 GTO

Sold for $477,720

If you weren’t surprised at the aforementioned 911 R, you should be at the final price of this 2011 Ferrari 599 GTO. After the dust settled, this GTO went home for a spectacularly low $477,000.

Just how low was this half-million sale? Based on recent sales of the GTO, this was around $200,000 off-pace from other GTOs on the market. At RM’s 2016 Scottsdale sale, a similarly-equipped GTO traded hands for an eye-watering $770,000.

Looking at the lot listing, the only thing that jumps out at us is the relatively lofty 10,500 miles on the odometer, but that shouldn’t be enough to warrant such a sharp price dip.

Whether this was an example of wrong car, wrong crowd or a symptom of something more troubling in the modern Ferrari market, we’re keeping a close eye on GTO prices going forward.

1993 Bentley Continental R

Sold for $61,827

Let’s end this with an oddball. Forever an unloved entry from Bentley’s extensive portfolio, this Continental R changed hand for what seems like a kings ransom. These are archaic, heavy brutes from a time when Bentleys weren’t known for reliability and residual value, and as such, the Continental R and related models usually change hands around the $40,000-$50,000 mark.

Bidding for this lovely green example was likely spurred on by the coupe’s immaculate condition and relatively low mileage. Under the front hood, Bentley’s galactic 6.75-liter V-8 breathed easier thanks to a low-pressure turbocharger.

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