It Was a Very Good Year

As this is our December issue, it’s the right time to reflect on the past 12 months, and to project forward into 2013.

Sports Car Market is by design a reflective magazine; we report on sales and events that have happened, and analyze and comment on them. Our world is large and all-inclusive, as we imagine yours is. You’ll find us at the most exclusive catalog auctions — as well as sales where decrepit trucks are sold by the pound.

What all of us at SCM — subscribers, contributors and staff — have in common is a delight in old cars, from their brilliant styling to their misguided mechanicals. We glory in their imperfections, we swap tales about how they let us down, and we believe that after reading Thor Thorson’s latest encomium about an Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 or Porsche 917/10, we have become instant experts on the subject — of course!

But SCM’s primary focus has always been the market. What’s selling, where, for how much, and why. We continue to be the only magazine that offers firsthand reports from trained analysts, with exclusive photos, chassis numbers, hands-on descriptions and informed analysis. You can expect even more in the future, as our Platinum database is revved up to accept multiple photos, videos and direct feeds from the auction houses for upcoming sales.

1972 Porsche 917/10 Spyder

Perhaps the world’s most recognized Porsche 917:

  • Team Penske Racing, sponsored by L&M
  • Driven by racing legends Mark Donohue and George Follmer
  • Debuted at Mosport ’72 Can-Am driven by Mark Donohue
  • Dominated the ’72 Can-Am series, taking first at five of nine races
  • Can-Am Champion in ’72 driven by George Follmer
  • Raced as #6 by Donohue and #7 by Follmer in ’72
  • Penske then sold 003 to Rinzler and it was cam­- paigned as the #16 car in RC Read More

1968 Ford GT40 Gulf/Mirage Lightweight

The GT40 offered here, chassis P1074, began life as Mirage M10003, and in its debut May 1967 at Spa, with Jacky Ickx and the “Flying Dentist,” Dr. Dick Thompson, finished First Overall.

Following the FIA’s regulation change for the 1968 season, which reduced prototype engine size to three liters, and five liters for production (Group 4) sports cars with a limited build of 25 examples, Mirage M10003 was taken back to J.W.A. in England for its conversion into a Group Read More

1936 Mercedes-Benz 540K Special Roadster

Baroness Gisela von Krieger, the only daughter of an aristocratic German family, was renowned for her exquisite beauty, glamorous lifestyle and impeccable fashion sense.

After moving to Paris in 1933, Baroness von Krieger became the darling of European Society. In her 20s, the refined socialite lived at the grandest Parisian hotels, was voted one of the “10 Best Dressed Women in the World,” and attended the coronation of King George VI. Pursued by countless admirers, the baroness proved an Read More

1928 Bentley 4½ Litre Le Mans Sports “Bobtail”

• A two-time factory Le Mans entry

• 2nd Overall at the 1929 Brooklands Double Twelve

• 3rd Overall at the 1929 24 Hours of Le Mans

• The Only Remaining “Bobtail” 4½ Litre

For the 1928 season, Bentley was intent on having new Works cars, all based on the 4½-liter production chassis in addition to Old Mother Gun. The first two cars produced, YV7263 and YW2557, were Works specialized production chassis sent to Vanden Plas for lightweight Le Mans Read More

Is It Time to Give Your Cars to Your Kids?

In the realm of estate planning, 2012 is either a once-in-a-lifetime tax-saving opportunity or the new normal.

We won’t know which until after the November 2012 election — and maybe not until next year, after the new Congress has had time to act. Savvy investors aren’t waiting to find out, and they are acting now to take full advantage of today’s opportunities.

The main point of interest is the estate and gift tax exemption. It has been rising steadily Read More

Ferraris Ride Unusual Tides

The Monterey auctions have again redefined the auction world’s segment of the collector car market, and, as usual, Ferraris are in the top tier of cars.

Gooding offered 13 Ferraris with one no-sale for a 92% close rate and $40,276,500 in sales. RM had 14 Ferraris on offer, with all selling for a 100% close rate and $30,954,000 in sales. Mecum had 18 Ferraris on offer with three no-sales, for a 67% close rate with $2,025,130 in sales. Russo and Steele had 17 Ferraris on offer with seven no-sales for a 50% sold rate and $1,431,100. Bonhams had five Ferraris on offer and two no-sales for a 60% close rate and $710,000 in sales.

The wild world of Dinos and Daytonas

It did seem strange when a late non-“chairs and flares” 246 GTS, s/n 7914, sold for $252,500, while a chairs and flares 246 GTS, s/n 7908, sold for $467,500.

Best Buys on the Peninsula

I think we can officially do away with the term “Affordable Classic” when speaking about Monterey. In my opinion, when using the term “affordable,” we should generally be referencing something that the masses could easily afford.

The five rides I’ve chosen are valued from the mid-five digits to the mid-seven digits. That’s affordable, Monterey-style.

Five auction houses replete with hundreds of cars of every marque, age and condition transformed this sleepy peninsula into the world’s largest classic car showroom. I spent six days canvassing this full extravaganza of inventory, and there weren’t more than a handful of deals.

From least to most expensive, here are five sold lots that each owner should be thrilled to now own.

1956 Ferrari 250 GT LWB TdF

The tragic accident at the 1955 24 Hours of Le Mans that claimed 80 lives had a profound effect on racing. The increasingly potent powertrains of the Le Mans sports cars were identified as a contributor to the disaster, and new regulations were drawn to eliminate what were essentially Grand Prix cars packaged with two-seater bodies.

The FIA’s new Gran Turismo classes prioritized safety and re-established competitively racing a road-based production car. Ferrari was prepared for the challenge, having Read More

1955 Maserati A6G/2000 Berlinetta

n total, Carrozzeria Frua completed fewer than 20 bodies for Maserati’s A6G/2000 chassis. Although the Frua spiders may garner greater recognition, the beautifully styled Berlinettas were featured in Maserati’s official catalog and offered a unique blend of sporting and grand touring characteristics.

Today, these rare Maseratis appear fresh, modern and utterly distinctive when compared with other 2-liter Italian sports cars of the period. Chassis 2114 was completed by Gilco — the company assembling bare chassis frames for Maserati and Ferrari Read More