10 July 2012

Bonhams' Festival of Speed sale sets several records

Bonhams' had a rousing success at its annual Goodwood Festival of Speed sale, held June 28, 2012. The auction set off at a breakneck pace — eclipsing last year’s total after only the sixth lot crossed the block — and finished with $33.8 million in total sales. Besides earning the highest final tally in the event’s recent history, a world record price for a British car at auction was set by Sir Henry “Tim” Birkin’s famous 1929 Bentley 4 ½-Litre Supercharged single-seat race car. One of the most significant Bentleys in existence, the car sold for slightly more than £ 5,000,000. Rounding out the top three was another world record price for the 1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50hp Double Pullman limousine that served as the basis for Corgi’s Silver Ghost model at £ 4,705,500, and £ 2,689,500 for the ex-Alfa Romeo Works 8C 2300 Spyder Lungo that participated in the 1932 Le Mans.

Other notable sales include £ 628,700 for a 1954 Bentley R-Type Continental, a model that seemingly continues to inch closer to the million-dollar mark every time it appears at auction, and a very well-bought 1964 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint Speciale at £ 34,500.

The top five sales for the day were:

  1. 1929 Bentley 4 1/2-Litre Supercharged Single Seater sold for £ 5,041,500
  2. 1912 Rolls-Royce 40/50hp Double Pullman Limousine sold for £ 4,705,500
  3. 1932 Alfa Romeo 8C 2300 Lungo Spyder sold for £ 2,689,500
  4. 1908 Itala Grand Prix Car sold for £ 1,737,500
  5. 1928 Bentley 4-1/2 Liter Supercharged Tourer sold for £ 785,500

Bonhams’ motor car division returns to action on Aug. 16-17, 2012, in Carmel, Calif. An all-motorcycle sale will take place the first night, followed by an automotive auction the next day. Headlining the sale is a 1997 McLaren F1 GTR longtail and a 1966 Ford GT40.

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