ON THE HUNT FOR RARE BREEDS

Special editions and lesser-seen vehicles are ideal cars to sell by auction.

ON THE HUNT FOR RARE BREEDS

Our team is often asked if there is an ‘ideal’ auction car, and the truth is that the Collecting Cars platform is a great place to sell any collectible, sporting or iconic vehicle - whether it has two or four wheels. However, it is certainly true that auctions can work especially well for very rare cars or sought-after special editions that are hard to find on the market. 

July saw an amazing range of cars with these credentials sell on the platform, with fantastic results for vehicles consigned across the UK, EU, Australian, and US teams. While some vehicles featured particularly rare specifications, others were simply exceptionally rare altogether. 

Chief among the cars with a fascinating story to tell was a remarkable 1967 Mercedes-Benz 600; a technological tour de force in its era, with the famous 150-bar hydraulic pressure system that powers the windows, seats, sunroof, boot, and automatic doors. Originally used as a demonstrator car for Mercedes-Benz GB, it was subsequently acquired by The Beatles’ lead guitarist, George Harrison MBE. Attracting a significant premium over a W100-era 600 without such provenance, it found a winning bid of £145,000. 

A previous famous owner also helped to find a new home for an exceptional 2004 Porsche Carrera GT, formerly the property of 2009 Formula One World Champion, Jenson Button. Finished in the very handsome combination of Seal Grey over Terracotta leather, it also came with a pewter sculpture of the V10 engine engraved with Button’s name, not to mention fastidious maintenance history. It was sold for €820,500. 

In July, Collecting Cars also offered another exceptional Porsche 911 Reimagined by Singer - the fourth such car to be sold on the platform, and with a winning bid of £604,500. Known as the ‘Qatar Commission’, it was built with the sought-after 4.0-litre flat-six by Ed Pink Racing Engines, trimmed with the bespoke ‘Leatherweave’ features, and was specified with the carbon-fibre roof and bucket seats. 

Other unique cars sold last month included the 2009 Brooke Cosworth Double R with its custom-built £15,000 aluminium body, which sold for £49,250; and the ‘one of a kind’ 2004 Ferrari 360 Challenge Stradale finished in Blu Mirabeau with cream and blue leather trim, finally selling for £195,509 after a lengthy bidding war. The US team consigned a fantastic ‘resto-mod’ 1967 International Scout 800 - upgraded with a 5.3L LS Vortec V8, Dana 44 axles, and a full interior re-trim - which sold for $115,000; as well as a beautifully finished 1973 Porsche 911 T, customised with a 2.7-litre flat-six and Bosch fuel injection, rear seat delete, and lightweight RS-style components, resulting in a hammer price of $125,000. 

Certain cars are so rare that even some die-hard car enthusiasts are unaware of their existence. The 2004 Mazda Roadster Coupe consigned by our Australian team last month falls into that category perfectly. One of just 179 fixed-roof versions of the MX-5/Miata to be built for the Japanese Domestic Market, and one of only 63 in the more driver-focused ‘Type S’ specification, this hard-to-find modern classic was sold with a winning bid of A$40,250. 

Rarity often attracts a premium, and so it was with the 2003 BMW Alpina Roadster V8 sold in Germany. One of just 555 examples of Alpina’s take on the Z8 Roadster, it features a 375bhp S62 V8 and a five-speed automatic transmission, making it a fantastic open-top cruiser. It was sold for €225,000; a significantly higher price than both standard Z8s previously sold on Collecting Cars, despite having more than double the mileage. Another example of limited supply leading to higher values was the brand-new 2021 Honda Civic Type R Limited Edition consigned in Australia. One of just 20 cars delivered to that market, and with just 40 km on the odometer, it sailed to a remarkable hammer price of A$148,500. 

Lesser-seen watches also helped to continue the success of the Watch Collecting platform in July, including two more auction world records. The 1993 Rolex 16613 Lapis Dial Submariner has an eye-catching wafer-thin slice of polished Lapis Lazuli stone, but the rock’s vulnerability to fracturing with rough handling means it is exceptionally rare to find an older example in such impressive condition. This special Submariner met its reserve price just two days into the, with the bids continuing to climb to £64,200 - more than double the previous record. 

Another rare offering was the 2018 Patek Philippe 50th Anniversary Ellipse; one of just 100 examples crafted to celebrated five decades of the Golden Ellipse, which features a hand-engraved voluté pattern carved into 18K white gold with black enamel, and a diamond set into the case at the 6 o’clock position. Watch Collecting was the first platform in the world to achieve an auction sale of the 50th Anniversary model, with a winning bid of £70,000. 

Collecting Cars has now sold more than 3,700 lots to a global audience of buyers, generating in excess of £128 million for its sellers. If you have a particularly rare vehicle, or a car or bike with a fantastic story to tell, then our team wants to hear from you. We continue to seek the most interesting and significant vehicles - and our consignment specialists in London, Munich, Sydney and Los Angeles are waiting for your call

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