Barrett-Jackson Records Strong Sales, Exceeds Expectations at 2009 Scottsdale Auction

The Barrett-Jackson Auction Company exceeded industry-wide expectations by recording more than $63 million in sales last week during the 38th annual Scottsdale auction. From Jan. 11-18, 2009, the all No Reserve auction featured an eclectic offering, including a 1929 Ford 4-AT-E Tri-Motor airplane that sold for $1.21 million and the “first production” 1955 Ford Thunderbird that fetched $660,000. Despite an uncertain economy, numerous Barrett-Jackson records were set, including $220,000 for a 1959 Chevrolet Corvette convertible, $250,000 for a 50th Anniversary Hurst Performance 2008 Dodge Viper and $137,500 for a 1970 Ford Mustang Boss 302 fastback.

Hailed as “The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions™,” the 2009 Scottsdale event featured over 1,100 collector vehicles and 40 hours of live, high-definition TV coverage on SPEED. For the third consecutive year, more than 200,000 people attended the Scottsdale auction.

“The car collector community enjoyed another stellar Scottsdale event at Barrett-Jackson,” said Craig Jackson, Chairman/CEO of Barrett-Jackson. “It was truly a celebration of our hobby and its resiliency. Sales were solid from start to finish and exceeded expectations. Barrett-Jackson was an oasis for hundreds of thousands of people looking to escape the economic headlines and enjoy some amazing cars in beautiful weather.”

The rare Tri-Motor aircraft, one of only a handful known to be in existence today and extensively restored by aviation expert, Bob Woods, has led a storybook existence, including being shot during the World War II attack at Pearl Harbor. The Thunderbird that was sold is also overflowing with provenance, as it is documented by Ford Motor Company as No. 1 and represents the birth of Ford’s sports car program.

In addition to the top sellers, Barrett-Jackson offered a healthy collection of entry level to mid range cars. With nearly 70 percent of all purchases made by new buyers, these vehicles served as the nucleus of the 2009 event. The diverse docket also catered to buyers planning to spend conservatively in today’s economy.

“Our customers asked us to offer more mid range vehicles this year,” noted Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson. “And the solid sales performance demonstrates the wisdom of our approach. While the Tri-Motor and Thunderbird were highlights of the week, collectors really responded to cars in the $50,000 to $150,000 price range. We’re cognizant of the current economic conditions and made sure to offer something for everyone.”

Barrett-Jackson joined forces with General Motors to offer a select group of vehicles from the GM Heritage Fleet, which was embraced by the company’s diverse clientele. “The General Motors Offering represented an opportunity for collectors to own a piece of GM history,” continued Davis. “An example was the show-stopping ‘Blackhawk’ concept that went for more than $500,000. Many of the vehicles from the GM Offering exceeded our original estimates, validating this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Barrett-Jackson continued to elevate into a passion-filled lifestyle experience, including celebrities in attendance and more than 350 exhibitors, ranging from luxury to mainstream products and services. The passion and enthusiasm for the car collecting hobby and the lifestyle it represents remains healthy, despite the current economy. Additionally, Barrett-Jackson helped raise more than $4.4 million for various charitable organizations during the 2009 Scottsdale auction with the help of Richard Petty, Rusty Wallace, Goose Gossage, Bill Goldberg, Reggie Jackson and Robert Yates, among others.

“The Scottsdale auction was a success on many levels,” added Jackson. “People are already asking for bidder and consignment applications for our Palm Beach event in April. Everyone involved in this fantastic week would agree that the collector car hobby continues to be healthy.”

The top 10 cars sold in Scottsdale include:

1929 Ford 4-AT-E Tri-Motor airplane – $1.21 million (Lot #1307)
1955 Ford Thunderbird convertible “Production No. 1” – $660,000 (Lot #1295)
1996 Buick Custom “Blackhawk” – $522,500 (Lot #1303)
1970 Plymouth Superbird custom tribute – $501,100 (Lot #1289)
2006 Chevrolet Monte Carlo NASCAR “Jeff Gordon’s” – $500,000 (Lot #1274)
2005 Saleen S7 Twin-Turbo 2-door coupe – $412,500 (Lot #1305)
2009 Ford Mustang FR500CJ Cobra Jet prototype – $375,000 (Lot #1333.1)
2010 Chevrolet Camaro “First Retail Production” – $350,000 (Lot #1316)
1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL-1 COPO coupe – $319,000 (Lot #1277.1)
1969 Chevrolet Camaro Yenko COPO coupe – $297,000 (Lot #1278)

With strong sales last week in Scottsdale and a successful inaugural Las Vegas auction last October, Barrett-Jackson has recorded over $90 million in sales over the last four months. The company is taking consignments for Palm Beach as it carries forward the momentum of the car collecting passion exhibited by its performance in Las Vegas and Scottsdale. The 7th Annual Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction in Palm Beach, Fla., will be held April 9-11, 2009.

About The Barrett-Jackson Auction Company

Established in 1971 and headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., Barrett-Jackson specializes in providing products and services to classic and collector car owners, astute collectors and automotive enthusiasts around the world. The company produces the “World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions™” in Scottsdale, Palm Beach, Fla., and Las Vegas. For more information about Barrett-Jackson, visit or call (480) 421-6694.