Percentage sold rates highest at ‘Drive-Throughs’, while top car prices soften

Richard Hudson-Evans

Richard Hudson-Evans

During the first four months trading, the highest sale rates in the UK have been when auction cars were driven past the rostrum.  An average of 94% of classics have sold at SWVA’s early season Drive-Throughs at Poole, while a market leading 513 cars have so far motored through the ACA hall at King’s Lynn, where there were buyers for 394 or 77% of them.

From the typically large numbers of enthusiasts attending those auctions where most classics are driven across the block and there is certainly a ‘moving show’ element to their day out, it would seem that many punters do value the reassurance of being able to see for themselves engines started up, gears engaged and cars for sale processing past the rostrum under their own power (or not!).

Although there is now a very large Green cloud on every horizon and, after smoking anywhere near a pub has been very nearly extinguished and diesel cars have been killed off, the dreaded ‘Ealth and Safety’ brigade will surely stamp out such primitive practices as driving exhausting and potentially toe-crushing motor vehicles through well populated salerooms.

Only driving cars up to the rostrum and then turning their engines off before pushing them out of the hall will dramatically reduce consumers’ intake of leaded gas. Installing much more effective extractor-fans and the employment of even more hi-viz jacketed marshals can only keep the clean air obsessive local authority clip boards at bay for a while. For the abolition of Drive Throughs may be around the corner after next.

In any case, the sale rates at March auctions, where cars were static-displayed, were 82% at Brightwells in Leominster, 80% at Brooklands under the Historics gavel and 78% at the Bonhams Goodwood Members Meet and at the Silverstone Auctions Race Retro sale in February.

Analysing the stats from those auction houses whose ‘live’ hammer prices are confirmed by published and therefore transparent results, the most classics went under the hammer during April, when 893 classics were catalogued, nearly as many as had been offered in March and February added together. But the 65% sale rate for the 581 cars declared sold was 10% less than it had been in March and 20% less than at the January auctions. While the £11,371 average price of a classic car at auction in April was considerably less than the £37,927 and £28,250 averages paid per car during the March and February sales.

Whilst a handful of high value automobiles went for millions of euros during Retromobile week in Paris in February, and millions more dollars were bet on the futures of investor grade stock at Scottsdale in Arizona in January and at Amelia in Florida in March, the highest auction prices so far this buying season in the UK have been sub-£600k in March.

For heading the first four months prices have been the £596,250 raised for the East Anglian Air Ambulance by the H&H sale at Duxford of the late Richard Allen’s 1964 Ferrari 330 GT Nembo Retro-Converted Spider and the £551,667 paid at Bonhams Goodwood for a replicated 1961 Aston Martin DP214 GT Competition Coupe. Very high value factory-correct ‘originals’, it seems, are not currently being dispersed in UK auctions where pay-outs will be in devalued Sterling.

According to Historic Automobile Group International, whose HAGI Top Index fell by 0.76% during April and by 3.33% this year to date, the monitored prices of higher value collector vehicles have continued to correct globally however. Indeed, four out of five of their international market tracking Indices declined last month. Only the HAGI MBCI that charts Classic Merc prices ended up in positive territory with a 1.86% hike for the month and 4.62% growth for the first four months.

By contrast, the Ferrari charting HAGI F recorded a loss of 1.83% in April with Ferrari prices down by nearly 2% for the year to date, whereas the HAGI P for Porsches corrected by another 0.99% last month contributing to a fall in achieved Porsche prices of 3.85% since January. What happens next is as uncertain as being the Head of the FBI or the size of Premier-Elect May’s majority.

Recently Added

The latest classic cars for sale

Img 0881Sponsored Ad
1995
£5,995
GT
  • 48,000
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Automatic
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 LHD
  • Refcode: TA1192938
1995 Ford Mustang 5.0 Litre GT V8 Convertible Automatic. Laser Red with Saddle leather upholstery...
20
07818 405272
View details
Img 0843(1)Sponsored Ad
2002
£7,995
V8 4.0 Executive
  • 35,000
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Automatic
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1192937
2002 Jaguar XJ V8 4.0 Executive Automatic. White Onyx with Cashmere leather upholstery, Oatmeal h...
20
07818 405272
View details
Img 0866(1)Sponsored Ad
1997
£14,995
400 MK 2 Facelift
  • 68,000
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Manual
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1192936
1997 TVR Chimaera 4.0 V8 Facelift MK 2. Cherry Pearl Red with Magnolia leather upholstery.Navy wo...
17
07818 405272
View details
Img 20170530 133630   copySponsored Ad
1958
£14,850
  • 43,800
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Manual
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1163019
BMW 1958 Isetta Bubble car #40
12
07706 574136
View details
Ac cobra 427 sc magnumSponsored Ad
1973
£29,995
Magnum
  • 1,100
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Manual
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1192933
Cobra by Magnum
36
01992 827 157
View details
Dscf1268Sponsored Ad
1997
£7,495
5.0 V12
  • 118,000
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Automatic
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1164515
We have just imported and registered a superb 1997 Toyota Century 5.0 V12 in Grey with lambswool ...
56
01625 420 739
View details
587614Sponsored Ad
1974
£39,950
  • 34,948
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Manual
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 LHD
  • Refcode: TA1192929
Citroën DS 23ie Pallas '74
30
+32 472.40.13.38
View details
Img 1881Sponsored Ad
2014
£23,995
90 2.2 TDCi XS hardtop uprated
  • 73,000
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Manual
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1192928
MOTODROME ARE DEFENDER SPECIALISTS - SEE WEBSITE FOR FULL STOCK motodrome offer for sale this up...
21
0118 968 0987
View details
Img 2623Sponsored Ad
2001
£12,995
110 TD5 county station wagon
  • 87,000
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Manual
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1192926
MOTODROME ARE DEFENDER SPECIALISTS SEE WEBSITE FOR FULL STOCK motodrome offer for sale this ver...
20
0118 968 0987
View details
Ad6a8a1d354549159f811e9671a08458Sponsored Ad
2003
£11,995
XJR
  • 48,217
  • Transmission 69197354786223e29b85070a0695cc247a4c2b215c743673c2d02e864b4cd687 Automatic
  • Steering ca68a9643bbb915d30839040f432af59e679db8cf98e23a4378cbef2ed805059 RHD
  • Refcode: TA1192824
Vehicle Description Due in approx 8 weeks Jaguar XJR X350 4.2 Supercharged in unmarked condition...
3
07845600278
View details

The latest classic cars for sale

See All Classic Cars for Sale