Confidence Returns to Classic Car Auctions

Consumer confidence is back with a bang in the classic vehicle auction market if the results from Shannons November 23 Melbourne Summer sale are any measure.
With over 90 per cent of all lots sold for a total result of nearly $1 million, the auction delivered one of the best regional auction outcomes of the year, prompting Shannons National Auction Manager Christophe Boribon to label it “very positive”.
Victoria black and white numerical number plates battled for supremacy with cars all evening, with the top sale eventually going to the plate ‘345’, which brought $82,000, just eclipsing ‘309’ ($81,000), ‘899’ ($77,000) and ‘565’ ($72,000).
The top-selling vehicle was a very well-presented and original Australian-delivered 1977 Porsche 930 Turbo 3.0, which sold for $74,000, followed by an ex-US 1972 Jaguar E-Type Series 3 V12 with manual transmission that made $67,000 – both excellent results for these vehicles.
Other Victorian number plates to do well at the auction were the ‘lucky’ ‘8.988’ ($33,000), the numerically interesting ‘9.669’ and ‘1.007’ (both $26,000), ‘5.999’ ($23,000) and ‘2.477’ ($19,000), while ‘88.000’ punched well above its weight for a five-digit plate when it sold with no reserve for $21,000.
Amongst the outstanding vehicle results was the $31,000 paid for a remarkably original and unmolested Australian-assembled 1965 Ford Galaxie 500 sedan with just 18,000 miles (believed genuine) on its odometer.
A smart-looking Tangerine 1973 Holden HQ Monaro GTS 5.0 sedan brought $33,000 and a 1966 Jaguar E-Type Series I 2+2 coupe made a strong $39,000.
Pre-War classics were in strong demand, headed by a beautiful green and white 1934 Nash 1220 Sedan selling for $30,000 after a painstaking restoration believed to have cost almost double its sale price.
A lovely Chocolate and Cream 1930 Essex Super 6 Sedan sold for $12,500; a 1924 Dodge Tourer ‘restorer’ sold with no reserve for $9,250 and a refurbished 1934 Hillman ‘Ruskin’ sedan made $9,000.
Post-War British and American cars also did well, with an imposing Dark Blue right hand drive 1948 Packard Series 22 Sedan selling for $25,000, while a restored 1949 Morris Minor ‘Low Light’ sedan made $9,500 – the same as a 1950 Ford Prefect in stunning restored condition.
The 20 vehicles sold with no reserve in the auction also produced strong figures, with a plain-looking white 1969 Holden HK Kingswood sedan bringing applause when it sold well above its high estimate for $17,000 – half as much again as the price achieved by an imposing Burgundy 1970 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow saloon that was snapped up for $12,500.
The Kingswood, which was factory- fitted with Holden’s then-new 307-cid V8 engine and two-speed automatic transmission, is believed to have started its life as a police car. Adding to its appeal was after-market air conditioning, while it had also been converted to ‘dual fuel’, making it an attractive and relatively economical ‘cruiser’.
Other ‘no reserve’ cars to do well included a very original and well-presented cream 1971 Citroen DS21 Sedan with five-speed manual transmission ($12,000); a Turquoise 1987 Mercedes-Benz 560SL imported from the United States in 1992 and equipped with both soft and hard tops ($18,500); a 1964 Jaguar Mk10 3.8 Saloon ($8,000) and a 1973 Holden LJ Torana that had enjoyed just one lady owner from new that went for $4,000.

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