This year, the sale took place over two days, on Friday 9and Saturday 10 February, in front of over 3 000 people. This annual auction event, a barometer for the international collectors’ car market, attracts huge numbers of enthusiasts from both France and around the world. Some 15 nationalities took part in the sale, bidding in the room, on the telephone, or via the internet, such as the online buyer of lot 44, the Mercedes- Benz 300 SL Gullwing, that sold for 1 158 270 € / 1 419 156 $.
The 2018 edition of this renowned sale presented seven private collections. These included the Volante Collection, a wonderful tribute to the French coachbuilder Vanvooren, and the J-C Miloé Collection featuring a stunning 1964 Porsche 904 GTS that sold above its high estimate for 1 873 600 € / 1 660 292 $. The Guélon and Broual Collections enjoyed enormous success, with the majority of lots selling well above pre-sale estimates.
There were 13 new world record auction prices, with 63 lots selling above 100 000 €, including 12 above 500 000 € and five above 1M€ (full list below).
A few minutes after the auction started, a bidding battle erupted over lot 10, the 1938 Delage D8 120 bodied by Chapron, between a telephone bidder and a client in the room. The beautiful automobile from the Golden Age of Motoring finally sold for three times its estimate, fetching 536 400 € / 657 294 $ including premium, a new auction world record. It was another prewar car that achieved the top price in the sale. The 1938 Bugatti Type 57C coupé Atalante that had starred in the 1938 Geneva Motor Show sold for 2 903 200€ / 3 557 376 $ including premium, a new auction world record price.
The car will join the collection of an European enthusiast. A modern supercar, the exclusive 2007 Ferrari FXX set the second highest price, and also setting an auction world record for the model. One of just 38 examples, this extremely powerful Ferrari had covered less than 100 km from new and its 6th gear had never been used! Sold with the crates of spares that came with the car from new, lot 92 fetched 2 674 000 € / 3 277 000 $ including premium.
A star of the track, the 1954 Maserati A6 GCS/53 Spyder Fiandri & Malagoni also caused a stir in the saleroom. Coming with exceptional provenance and transparent history, lot 103 made the third highest price in the sale, changing hands for 2 445 600 € / 2 166 995 $ including premium.
The sale saw spirited bidding on certain lots that produced two more world record auction prices. Lot 105, the 1951 Porsche 356 Pre-A 1300 attracted multiple bids and sold for 894 000 € / 792 208 $ (estimate : 440 000 – 520 000 €). The 1977 Alpine Renault 1600 SX (lot 123) also doubled its estimate, changing hands for 172 840 € / 153 162 $ , suggesting there may be other bidding battles ahead when the very last Alpine A110 comes up for sale in the next Automobiles sur les Champs XII auction on 8 April (estimate 60 000 – 80 000 € / 53 000 – 71 000 $).
But it was not just the stars of the Artcurial auction at the Retromobile who achieved good results. Even the small classics showed significant increases in value, such as the De Coucy Prototype of 1948, which surpassed the estimate by nine times with 45 269 €. The Riffard Renault 4CV Rank Record sold at € 58216 was three times more expensive than estimated.
Artcurial also showed a clear trend towards unrestored vehicles. Around forty vehicles were offered in unrestored condition. The estimates all sounded very inviting and promised a favorable bidder result. However, the majority of vehicles reached at least twice the maximum estimate, some even more. An Amilcar Type M from 1929 was offered with an estimate of 3000 to 4000 € and finally reached 9536 €. A second Amilcar Type M3 Cabriolet achieved 15 496 €. His estimate here was 5000 to 8000 €. A vehicle of truly exceptional design is the 1947 Dolby JB10. Only two of these front-wheel drive vehicles were built in Paris. This single item reached 27 416 € instead of the estimated 6000 to 12000 €.
The original left Alvis Speed Twenty SD Cabriolet with Vanvooren body from the Volante collection changed hands for 226 48o €. The unrestored 1912 Panhard Levassor X14 20CV, also with Vanvooren body even reached 298 000 € and also the Horch 853 Sport Cabriolet from 1937 with concise patina changed hands for 631 760 €. The highlight of the collection, the Bugatti T57 Vanvooren Cariolet did not live up to expectations and was not sold.