Bugattis Lead $14.4m Bonhams Retromobile Sale

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The Bonhams Retromobile sale witnessed some extraordinary results including $4,408,575 for the Ex-Earl Howe 1937 Bugatti Type 57S Atalante; $3,131,475 for ‘Black Bess’ – the ex-Roland Garros Bugatti Type 18; and a quite astonishing $435,375 for a Citroen DS23 EFi Cabriolet.

A packed saleroom at the second annual Bonhams Retromobile sale witnessed spirited bidding resulting in a $14,480,770 total. Bids were received from around the world but collectors from mainland Europe were most often victorious, and it is worth noting that the Type 57S and Black Bess will remain in Europe. The collection of eight Citroens attracted much interest, with a number of records broken.

James Knight, Group Head of Bonhams’s Motoring department commented: “The sale attracted unprecedented exposure, we had a packed saleroom of over 1,500 people, and I am very pleased with the results. I felt the Type 57S Atalante made a market-correct price and was pleasantly surprised with the result for Black Bess. I was staggered by the price achieved for a DS23 Cabriolet – I have no idea what the record was, but I reckon we must have smashed it! By the time the sale finished we had achieved a success rate of over 70%. The sale result endorses my assessment of the market. There is a healthy interest for rare and interesting motorcars and a ready market for most other cars as long as they are priced at levels to encourage interest. This was just the start to the new year we were looking for and we can draw confidence from the results.”