The Silverstone Classic celebrated its 25th anniversary this year. A motor sport spectacular blending everything from pre-war Bentleys to modern-era Le Mans classics, this is a huge event and well worth a visit with something for everyone, even a Status Quo concert!
Our focus however is on the auction, a three-day event run by relative newcomers Silverstone Auctions. In just four years they have established themselves as a high quality car auction specialist with a particular focus on 80s and 90s automobiles. For the 2015 sale they ran a specific competition car sale on the Thursday followed by a two-day road car sale on Saturday and Sunday.
The big story leading up to the auction was the exquisite Porsche 911 964 Clubsport RS. With a reserve of £230-£260,000 it was certainly strong money but with good reason. This was the first production N/GT model (Clubsport) and was never sold through the usual dealer network but reputedly gifted to Ulrich Richter, a dedicated Porsche racing driver, in the hope they could entice him back into GT racing. They did, with Ulrich recording a podium finish at the 1994 Daytona 24HRS! On auction day it didn’t quite hit its estimate, topping out at £225,000, just £5000 short of its lowest estimate and remains unsold. But it’s obvious to see the thirst for the Porsche 911 has not dried up yet.
A crowd favourite was the extremely rare Mercedes 190 Evo II. This very low mile example was absolutely stunning to walk round, looking virtually showroom fresh inside and out. Often bracketed with the BMW E30, the Evo II is a very rare car indeed, just 502 examples were made to allow them to go racing and compete in the DTM championship. On auction day the £65-£75,000 reserve was smashed with a hammer price of £100,688.
With a modest reserve of £40-£55,000 the 1987 Ferrari 328GTS with under 50,000 miles and just three owners sold for an impressive £75,375 proving that interest in the Italian stable continues to trickle down through the whole Ferrari range.
Generating a huge round of applause and an exciting bidding war was an immaculate 1989 DeTomaso Pantera GT5-S, one of just 17 RHD examples produced from a total of 187 worldwide. Smashing its top estimate by £37,500, the hammer dropped at a whopping £157,500.
It’s clear to see that the market is still bouyant with some big prices going through but you can also get some great bargains. The gorgeous Mercedes Pagoda is a slow burning investment but a shrewd long term purchase with three nice examples selling around the £35,000 mark. A timeless classic that will never look out of place when cruising around the French Riviera.
In Thursday night’s competition car auction the star lot was a 1959 Cooper Monaco selling for £219,375 well over its top estimate of £180,000. Popular racing driver Justin Maeers was the proud new owner and promptly expressed his desire to race the car on the Saturday during the Silverstone Classic. Within ten minutes, cars, chairs, tables and people were moved around and paperwork signed enabling the car to be removed and put into scrutineering just before the deadline passed for entries.
The next Silverstone Auction will be the Salon Prive sale on the 4th September, see you there.