RM Sotheby’s, New York, December 8, 2023

RM returned to Sotheby’s headquarters on York Avenue in New York City as one of the opening auctions in Sotheby’s “Luxury Week” auction schedule. It was a small sale of just 16 cars, one motorcycle and a single Andy Warhol print of a Mobil sign, but it was astutely aligned with the Big Apple market.

Eight of the 17 vehicle lots were built since the turn of the century (this century, not the last one), a concentration that seemed to cater to the New York crowd’s focus on the moment. It was a good example of RM’s continuing exploration of new ways, new times and new venues for linking cars with collectors, as was seen last month with the sale of Ferrari 250 GTO s/n 3765 during Sotheby’s regular New York Evening art sales (bringing $51,700,000) and the high production-value auction during the Las Vegas GP week that included Lewis Hamilton’s 2013 Mercedes-AMG W04 Formula One car s/n F1W04-04 for $18,815,000.

Everyone else hews to an old school collector car auction formula of established venues and consistent presentations. Only RM’s Rob Myers and his partners at Sotheby’s dare to penetrate the collector car auction venue bubble with new approaches.

Rob Myers has a long history poking at the New York City market. Others have tried before but none have persisted as long as Rob or with such success. This is a brief recap:

  • 2000 in a short-lived partnership with Dennis Nicotra in the New York Auto Salon and Auction (60% sell-through, $6,420,800 total sale)
  • 2002 another NYAS auction with a 48% sale rate and $2,080,800 total, mostly on account of Ferrari 400 Superamerica s/n 2471SA selling for $379,500
  • “The Art of the Automobile” in November 2013 with a 91.4% sale rate and $62,579,000 sale with 16 lots sold on hammer bids of $1 million or more and dramatically staged on Sotheby’s 10th floor by Erica Reaume
  • A quite spectacular sale in December 2015 and 67.7% sale rate, $72,534,000 total highlighted by the sale of the ex-Janis Joplin Porsche 356 SC Cabriolet for $1,760,000 which was far from the most expensive lot in the sale (Ferrari 290MM s/n 0626 for $28,050,000).
  • Reprised in December 2017 with a 32 lot sale with an 84.4% sale rate and $44,846,399 total where Ferrari 250 GT California Spider s/n 1451GT brought $17,990,000 and ten lots were sold on hammer bids of $1 million or more
  • November 2023’s sale of the 250 GTO
  • And now “Luxury Week” in 2023, only 18 lots but an 77.8% sale rate and $13,610,200 in total sale with six lots sold on $1 million hammer bids.

It will be entertaining to see where it goes from here.

Cars Sold/ Offered Sale % Sold < Low Est Sold > High Est Average Sale Median Sale Total $
14/18 77.8% 64.3% 0% $972,157 $863,000



I enduring I-95 traffic to and from NYC to preview all 18 of the offered lots, 3+ hours in and 4+ hours out of the city for two and a half hours actually looking at the cars, a very low efficiency ratio.

Lot # 2 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 MFI Coupe; S/N 9114600478; Engine # 6640673; Gulf Blue, Black ‘Carrera’/Midnight Blue leatherette/Shetland tweed inserts; Estimate $300,000 – $400,000; Cosmetic restoration 3+ condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $320,000 plus commission of 11.56%; Final Price $357,000. – 2,687/210hp, 5-speed. matte finish Fuchs wheels, Pirelli P6000 tires, Blaupunkt multiband radio. – Porsche apparently calls the herringbone cloth seat inserts “Shetland tweed”. This is an original Italian market car with seriously more hp than the 165hp U.S. Carrera 2.7. Very good older paint and upholstery. Wiper scuffed windshield. The underbody shows some road miles but is cleaner than suggested by the 71,692 km on the odometer. – This is a pretty car in a dramatic color which is attractive to Porsche buyers but it’s not an exceptional example and has modified upholstery and mediocre presentation. This is a #2 result for a #3 Porsche, a New York kinda bonus.

Lot # 3 2002 Ferrari 575M Maranello Coupe; S/N ZFFBV55A220128205; Rosso Corsa/Tan leather; Estimate $350,000 – $400,000; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $300,000 plus commission of 11.67%; Final Price $335,000. – 5,748/515hp, 6-speed, red calipers, silver painted 5-spoke alloy wheels, air conditioning, CD stereo. – Very good original paint and upholstery. Clean underbody with scant evidence of road use. Represented as 8,000 miles “at time of cataloging”. One of about 177 6-speed 575 Maranellos built. – The manual shift 6-speed, a modification by Ferrari of the intended F1 semi-automatic gearbox, is not renowned as a great driving car but that doesn’t keep it from being highly valued by today’s buyers – most of whom will find it hard to execute a clean upshift, let alone double-clutch a downshift. This result is a magnanimous premium, nearly triple, for the 6-speed, even taking the reported low miles and barely used condition into account – which might be attributed to how difficult it is to drive.

Lot # 4 2008 Ducati Desmosedici D16RR Motorcycle; S/N ZDM1ZDFW58B000626; Engine # ZDF8000750; Red, White/Black; Estimate $40,000 – $60,000; Unrestored original 2 condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $50,000 plus commission of 20.00%; Final Price $60,000. – 968/200hp 16-valve desmodromic valve V-4. – Like new with nine miles on its odometer. Represented as numbers-matching. – Hammer bid $50,000 plus non-auto 20% commission.

Lot # 5 1994 Porsche 911 Turbo 3.6 Coupe; S/N WP0AC2963RS480096; Guards Red/Cashmere leather; Estimate $525,000 – $625,000; Unrestored original 2 condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $480,000. – 3,601/360hp, 6-speed, matte polished 5-spoke modular alloy wheels, P Zero tires, red calipers, power sunroof, cassette/CD stereo, books, tools, service records, window sticker documented. – Other than nearly invisible sand pitting on the nose and some stretching of the leather this is a showroom condition Porsche with 6,302 miles from new. – The Porsche 964 Turbo legend lives on and carries a legacy of exception in performance and handling. This isn’t, however, a 993 Turbo with over 400hp even though taking the low miles into account it brought a price like it was. The result here in NYC is a fair if not reasonable balance among performance, rarity and low miles and it should have sold on this bid in a New York Minute.

Lot # 6 2006 Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Coupe; S/N VF9SA15BX6M795013; Grey metallic, Dark Grey metallic/Grenadine leather; Estimate $1,500,000 – $1,750,000; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $1,350,000 plus commission of 10.37%; Final Price $1,490,000. – 7,993/1,001hp quad turbo W-16, all-wheel drive, matte brightwork and alloy wheels, Michelin tires, black calipers. – U.S. delivery. Excellent original paint. Good upholstery and interior trim but surface cracked driver’s seat back bolster and stretched cushions. Clean, sharp engine and underbody. Serviced in 2023, new tires in 2022. Represented as 3,022 miles. One of 252 built. – The Veyron’s staggering 253 mph performance is accentuated after driving into NYC for the auction preview with a reminder that on regular roads with patches, repairs, manhole covers and potholes this is not even remotely usable. Perhaps that’s why after seven years or so it has only 3,022 miles. There are few enough places to let it loose, and even fewer drivers who can cope with its performance, but that’s not sufficient to deter enthusiastic collectors from owning one for this surprisingly moderate price.

Lot # 7 2022 Porsche 911 GT3 Touring Package Coupe; S/N WP0AC2A96NS271189; Black Olive/Truffle Brown leather, houndstooth inserts; Estimate $350,000 – $450,000; Unrestored original 2 condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $300,000 plus commission of 11.67%; Final Price $335,000. – 3,996/502hp, 6-speed, black calipers, carbon discs, extended range fuel tank, front axle lift, carbon fibre seats, Satin Weiss Gold alloy wheels, Bose stereo – Like new with paint-to-sample color, 313 miles. Seemingly never-ending Porsche Exclusiv details in colors and materials. – With only 313 miles on this minutely-specified and detailed Porsche there is obviously a delight in bedeviling Porsche Exclusive (or Ferrari Tailor-Made or M-B AMG) with personal details that validates the buyer as an “important client” whose every little “wunch” is catered to. Cheerfully represented as having cost 1.4 times more than the original MSRP of a 911 GT3 Touring (which was $163,450 according to C&D), this is an exercise in personal gratification that was remarkably gratified with this result. Its Black Olive paint would look great on an M1 Abrams tank.

Lot # 8 2015 McLaren P1 Coupe; S/N SBM12ABA3FW000209; Professor 2 Blue, Red accents/Red leather, Black seat bars; Estimate $2,000,000 – $2,500,000; Unrestored original 2 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $1,900,000 plus commission of 10.26%; Final Price $2,095,000. – 3,799/893hp hybrid V-8, 7-speed automanual, red calipers, machined face black alloy wheels, PZero Corsa M tires, carbon fiber splitter, intake trough, floor and window/roof trim, window sticker, service invoices, books. – $139,847 in McLaren Special Operations options. Clean, unused and spotless with under 2,700 miles from new. – Seven years old, under 400 miles per year and sold once by Gooding & Co at Amelia in 2017 for $2,392,500, a car that is literally “going nowhere” in both value and use. It’s still a wonderful, exotic and breathtakingly fast automobile and a technical tour de force which is a sound value at this price.

Lot # 9 1954 Aston Martin DB2/4 Coupe, Body by Bertone; S/N LML765; Engine # VB6J213; Ice Blue/Light Brown leather, Beige piping; Estimate $1,200,000 – $1,600,000; Recent restoration 1 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $1,000,000 plus commission of 10.50%; Final Price $1,105,000. – 2,580/125hp, 4-speed, silver painted wire wheels, Avon tires, Lucas headlights, tools, jack. – The sole coupe among seven Bertone-bodied DB2/4s built. Known history from new, represented as numbers-matching. Major show history when new. Excellent paint, brilliant chrome, nearly impeccable upholstery and interior trim. Bright crisp gauges. Sharp, clean chassis and underbody with no evidence of road use. Class winner at Pebble Beach in 2023, accepted for the 2024 concours at Villa dEste and still concours ready without being overdone. – Sold by Gooding & Co at Scottsdale in 2019 where its condition was described as “this restoration is quite a bit older [than its 1987 Pebble Beach appearance) and starting to show it as well as being unused for several years and in need of recommissioning.” It got recommissioning and more from the consignor here and Kevin Kay Restorations and now is above reproach in all significant respects. It was bought here with its Villa d’Este assured entry for probably less than the sum of its acquisition and restoration cost and is a beautiful, unique, trophy car.

Lot # 10 1962 Jaguar XKE SI Roadster; S/N 877085; Engine # R5108-9; Opalescent Bronze, Opalescent Bronze hardtop/Beige leather; Fawn cloth top; Estimate $150,000 – $200,000; Recent restoration 2- condition; No Reserve; Hammered Sold at $122,500 plus commission of 12.00%; Final Price $137,200. – 3,781/265hp, 4-speed, two tops, chrome wire wheels. – Restoration completed in Scotland in 2019, represented as all numbers-matching and the original color. Excellent paint, chrome and lightly stretched upholstery. Window seals on the hardtop are coming loose. The engine compartment is orderly but aging. Loose interior trim on the windshield posts. An attractive Jag restoration that is aging more quickly than it should. – John Apen, whose Gold Book was one of the earliest thorough value guides, had an MIT engineer’s approach to evaluating cars. He called it a “game of attributions” where the things you can see may be attributed to those you can’t. So when we identify little niggling oversights on the surface it calls into question what is, in the auction context, unseen and unknowable. The bidders at RM’s auction at Sotheby’s NYC took the same approach and reserved some firepower to address things that may come up. On that basis this is an astute and measured result for this E-type.

Lot # 11 2015 Porsche 918 Spyder; S/N WP0CA2A18FS800488; Mexico Blue/Onyx Black leather, Yellow piping; Estimate $1,900,000 – $2,200,000; Unrestored original 2 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $1,800,000 plus commission of 10.28%; Final Price $1,985,000. – 4,953/887hp hybrid, 7-speed automanual, matte Grey alloy wheels, Acid Green calipers, carbon discs, carbon fiber splitter, head fairings, mirrors, interior package and wing, front end lift, Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, active aerodynamics. – 488/918 built, U.S. delivery. Like new. Paint-to-sample color (one of five 918s in Mexico Blue) wrapped in protective film. The odometer shows 1,844 miles and the car doesn’t show much if any of those. – This is a lovely 918 Spyder in a seriously rare color and ambitiously specified by its first owner. It is worth every dollar of the price it brought here today, but not a dollar more.

Lot # 12 1963 Shelby Cobra 289 Roadster; S/N CSX2095; Withdrawn

Lot # 13 1953 Fiat 8V Supersonic Coupe, Body by Ghia; S/N 106000053; Engine # 104000000086; Blue Medio Metallic/Terra Cotta leather; Estimate $2,100,000 – $2,600,000; Recent restoration 2+ condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $2,200,000 plus commission of 10.23%; Final Price $2,425,000. – 1,996/135hp, 4-speed, chrome spoke Borrani wire wheels, Michelin tires woodrim steering wheel, Marchal headlights and fog lights. – Represented as the numbers-matching engine and gearbox. Restored in 2014 in its original unique color combination after long static storage until 2001. One of 14 8V Supersonics by Ghia. Excellent paint, chrome and beautiful interior. Bright, crisp gauges. The chassis and underbody are like new, not driven since it was restored, serviced in October 2023. – There is absolutely nothing to critique with this result for this exceptional, beautiful and rare 8V Supersonic. It is a gorgeous car in a rare and attractive color combination that is impossible to fault. It is a uniformly superior and visually dramatic car.

Lot # 14 2005 Ferrari Superamerica Convertible; S/N ZFFGT61A850144839; Grigio Silverstone/Natural leather, Brown piping; Estimate $650,000 – $850,000; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $650,000 plus commission of 10.77%; Final Price $720,000. – 5,748/540hp, 6-speed, red calipers, 5-spoke modular wheels, SF shields, CD stereo, Fiorano handling package, Daytona seats, custom upholstery. – Chipguarded nose, door edges and mirrors. 3,760 miles from new. Displayed with the roof panel stowed and not inspectable. Flawless paint and upholstery. Some wear on the door rear seals. Misfit between the instrument binnacle and the dashtop. – Sold at RM’s Arizona auction in 2016 for $682,000 and brought a somewhat surprising higher price here, attributable to the growing appreciation for these cars with 6-speed manual gearboxes.


Lot # 15 1993 Bugatti EB110 Super Sport Prototype Coupe; S/N ZA9BB02E0PCD39006; Grigio metallic/Dark Blue leather; Estimate $3,000,000 – $3,400,000; Unrestored original 2 condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $2,900,000. – 3,498/650hp, all-wheel drive, Michelin Pilot Sport tires, black Brembo calipers – Bugatti’s engineering development and prototype car for the EB110 SS, retiained for development use with several unique features not on other EB110s. Sold by Bugatti during bankruptcy and later brought to street-legal specs by Dauer Racing. Several subsequent owners but still showing only 3,530 km on the odometer. Excellent paint and barely used upholstery. Some road gravel caught in wheelwell shelves. Clean and essentially unused engine compartment. – Romano Artioli’s quest to resurrect Bugatti in the 90’s was noble but the standard set (a quad-turbo V-12 engine and all-wheel drive) was high and eventually led to the firm’s demise and eventual second resuscitation by Volkswagen. It remains, however, a celebrated marque and epic piece of automobile history that is still appreciated by collectors as this result indicates even though it did not meet the seller’s expectations nor recognize this car’s SS prototype status.

Lot # 16 1986 Mercedes-Benz 500 SEC AMG 6.0 ‘Wide-Body’ Coupe; S/N WDB1260441A229225; Engine # 11796812022172; Blue-Black Metallic/Anthracite leather; Estimate $600,000 – $750,000; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $520,000. – 6.0/375hp, automatic, polished rim, black center 17 inch modular alloy wheels, Falken tires, power sunroof, power windows, car phone holder, AMG aerokit, Brembo brakes – Lavishly equipped with AMG Wide Body and other parts as well as the AMG twin cam cylinder heads, this is stated to be only 4,898 km from new. Very good original paint and lightly stretched upholstery. The right front corner of the hood stands slightly high (but may not be properly closed during the auction preview.) – This wide body AMG 500 SEC is still menacing and purposeful, embodying all the road-clearing performance that its 375hp AMG engine provides. Today its 375hp is not impressive (particularly from 6 litres) but is still sufficient to humble most proletarian automobiles, which will be humbled by its appearance long before their drivers assess its innate performance. The reported high bid here is a realistic offer even taking into account the surpassingly low mileage.

Lot # 17 2019 Ford GT Coupe; S/N 2FAGP9CW6KH200075; Ingot Silver/Anthracite leather; Estimate $900,000 – $1,000,000; Unrestored original 2 condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $780,000 plus commission of 10.64%; Final Price $863,000. – 3,497/647hp twin turbo V-6, 7-speed automanual, red calipers, carbon discs, 20-inch carbon fibre wheels, Michelin tires, titanium lug nuts, carbon fiber splitter and floor. – Like new with 187 miles and two owners. – It might be tempting to intrepret this limp biscuit result as a turning point in 2017-2019 Ford GT values but it is probably a case of wrong time and place even though it had a reserve. These things have been around for five years, though and are filtering into the secondary market on a regular basis. Even at this moderate price this is poor choice for a hold-and-flip transaction.

Lot # 18 1994 Jaguar XJ220 Coupe; S/N SAJJEAEX8AX220632; Le Mans Blue/Smoke Grey leather; Estimate $550,000 – $700,000; Unrestored original 3+ condition; With Reserve; Not sold at Hammer bid of $500,000. – 3,498/542hp twin turbo V-6, 5-speed, tinted glass roof panel, silver alloy wheels, Bridgestone tires. – Barely used but aging. Small paint nicks. Scrapes above the back of both doors. Scraped by the right outside mirror. Clearcoat separation above the right headlight. Good upholstery and interior trim except separation behind the driver’s upper seat back. Clean engine compartment with insulation discoloration on the right side. Underbody and chassis are barely used, consistent with the 3,223 km showing on its odometer. – Original but now teetering on the verge of being 30 years old, and looking its age, even with 3,223 km this isn’t a choice XJ220. The seller could have been more than happy with this much for it and the bidders were realistic in not offering more which would have been $555,000 after paying the commission.

Lot # 19 1989 Lamborghini Countach 25th Anniversary Edition Coupe; S/N ZA9CA05A0KLA12722; Bianco Polo/White leather; Estimate $1,500,000 – $2,000,000; Unrestored original 2- condition; With Reserve; Hammered Sold at $1,500,000 plus commission of 10.33%; Final Price $1,655,000. – 5,167/455hp V-12, 5-speed, polished alloy modular wheels, Pirelli tires, lumpy US-spec front bumpers and wing. – Featured in “The Wolf of Wall Street” but not crashed during filming. Rusty machine screws securing the wheel rims. Very good paint and upholstery. Far better than most movie cars but far from pristine. – A Silver Anniversary Countach is a $600,000 car but here in NYC at Sotheby’s headquarters a “Wolf of Wall Street” Countach is nearly three times that, a commentary on Wall Street ideology. This result is all about the movie provenance and very little about the Countach.

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