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New York, 06 December, 2017

The RM Sotheby’s Icons Auction was held during the evening of Wednesday 6th December 2017, in the Sotheby’s 10the Floor Galleries of their headquarters building on York Avenue in Manhattan. This was their third New York auction, and formed part of Sotheby’s “Life of Luxury” week of sales. The “iconic” offerings ranged from vintage wines, through art, sculptures and motoring memorabilia, to a range of automobiles. These latter spanned over 90 years, from a 1923 Rolls Royce Silver Ghost to a 2017 Bugatti Chiron, with a number of rare and interesting examples in between.

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The undoubted star of the sale was the alloy bodied 1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider Competizione, chassis # 1451 GT, with Le Mans (5th overall & 3rd in class in 1959) race history. After some spirited bidding, both in the room and on the telephones, lasting some 10 minutes, it sold for $17,990,000 to exceed its pre-sale estimate of $14-17million.

Other notable sales were the Jaguar C-Type, which had been driven by Phil Hill in period to take the model’s first US race win, which achieved $5,285,000. Maybe looking a little lost amongst some of the more exotic machinery, was a 1992 Lancia Delta HF Integrale Evoluzione, 1 of 400 ‘Giallo Ferrari’ special editions, which achieved $190,400, in the process setting a new world auction record for a road-going Delta Integrale. Of the pair of Mercedes-Benz 300 SLs on offer, it was the Roadster that beat the “Gullwing” to the top sales figure, selling for $1,407,500, against the $1,352,500 for the latter. Of what one might call “the novelties”, a 1953 Piaggio Ape Calessino trike made $45,600, a 1960 VW “23 Window” Microbus achieved $207,200, and a 1958 Austin Healey 100-Six with gold plated interior and exterior bright work, ex-London Motor Show that year, sold for $179,200. The star lot of the non automobile part of the auction, was the race suit and helmet worn by Steve McQueen, as his character Michael Delaney, in the film “Le Mans”, which achieved $336,000

Of the 31 vehicles on offer, there were 11 million dollar plus sales, with an 84 percent sell-through rate, and a total sales figure of $45.5 million. The Aston Martin DB5 Convertible on offer set a new auction record for the model, when it sold for $2.7 million, whilst the Bugatti Chiron established a new record price for a modern Bugatti with a selling price of $3,772,500. Also on display were a pair of cars destined for their Scottsdale auction in January, an Alfa Romeo 1900C SS Speciale and a Jaguar D-Type.

Top Ten Sales in Descending Order
Lot 141 1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider Competizione s/n 1451GT $17,990,000
Lot 131 1952 Jaguar C-Type s/n XKC 007 $5,285,000
Lot 137 2018 Bugatti Chiron s/n VF9SP3V3XJM795069 $3,772,500
Lot 130 1965 Aston Martin DB5 Convertible s/n DB5C/1923/L $2,700,000
Lot 142 2014 Pagani Huayra s/n ZA9H11UA3ESF76078 $1,850,000
Lot 138 2015 Porsche 918 'Weissach' Spyder s/n WP0CA2A16FS800652 $1,732,000
Lot 126 1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster s/n 198.042.7500649 $1,407,500
Lot 134 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing s/n 198.040.5500593 $1,352,500
Lot 146 1990 Ferrari F40 s/n 87144 $1,242,500
Lot 125 2016 Ferrari F12 tdf s/n 219337 $1,105,000
All figures quoted include Buyer’s Premium.

Keith Bluemel

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