2020 (February): The most-expensive cars sold at public auction thus far in 2020 are a 1931 Bugatti Type 55 and a 1968 Ford Mustang GT “Bullitt”.
The list of the ten most-expensive cars sold at public auction thus far in 2020 is led by a 1932 Bugatti Type 55 that was a factory-entry at Le Mans. The second-most-expensive car in 2020 is the 1968 Ford Mustang GT that was driven by Steve McQueen in Bullitt. The third-most-expensive car in 2020 is a 1995 Ferrari F50. The magnificent 1932 Hispano-Suiza J12 Dual Cowl Phaeton is the second prewar car on the list of top ten most-expensive cars sold in 2020 (year to date). The list includes a still-to-be-built 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray that sold for charity.
List of the Top Ten Most-Expensive Cars Sold at Auction in 2020
The 10 highest results achieved for cars sold at public auction thus far in 2020 were:
|Year||Car||Price ($)||Auction House||Auction|
|1||1932||Bugatti Type 55 Two-Seat Supersport by Figoni||5,061,380||Bonhams||Paris|
|2||1968||Ford Mustang GT “Bullit”||3,740,000||Mecum||Kissimmee|
|4||2020||Chevrolet Corvette Stingray VIN001||3,000,000||Barrett-Jackson||Scottsdale|
|5||1965||Ferrari 275 GTB/C6||2,753,080||Artcurial||Paris|
|6||1932||Hispano-Suiza J12 Dual Cowl Phaeton||2,425,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|7||2018||Pagani Huayra Roadster||2,370,000||RM Sotheby’s||Arizona|
|8||1958||BMW 507 Roadster Series II||2,195,875||RM Sotheby’s||Paris|
|9||1964||Porsche 904 GTS||2,109,250||RM Sotheby’s||Paris|
|11||2021||Lexus LC500 Convertible||2,000,000||Barrett-Jackson||Scottsdale|
|12||1967||Ferrari 330 GTS||1,985,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
Note: Include auction premium. May include post-hammer deals and charity lots. Two cars added, as the two charity lots are new, as yet unbuilt cars, but in fairness, some of the modern hypercars are practically new and undriven too.
The Ten-Most Expensive Cars of 2020 (February)
1932 Bugatti Type 55
The highest result at the Bonhams Paris 2020 classic car auction was €4,600,000 ($5,070,000) paid for a 1932 Bugatti Type 55, chassis 55221. This was also the most-expensive car sold at any of the Paris Rétromobile 2020 auctions.
This Bugatti Type 55 was originally a works racing car campaigned at the 1932 24 Hours of Le Mans with Louis Chiron and Count Guy Bouriat-Quintart as co-drivers.
The subsequent owner had the unique two-seat Figoni body fitted. The Bugatti retained this bodywork and was sold from over six decades of single-family ownership.
1968 Ford Mustang GT “Bullitt”
The 1968 Ford Mustang GT “Bullitt” set a new model record when it sold for $3,740,000 at the Mecum Kissimmee 2020 collector car auction. This result, around $3.7 million higher than Hagerty lists for a similar car in concourse condition, is all due to this car being driven by Steve McQueen in the 1968 movie “Bullitt”.
After the production of the movie, the Mustang was sold on without premium. It was in the possession of the Kieran family since 1974. The Mustang was used as a daily driver but was garaged since 1980. The Mustang has around 65,000 miles on the clock and, although running, is in a rusty condition.
A 1970 Porsche 917K used on the Steve McQueen movie Le Mans, similarly sold for a marque-record $14,080,000 – almost $4 million more than the second-most-expensive Porsche, the Le-Mans-winning 1982 Porsche 956. The Ford marque record of $11,000,000 is for a 1968 Ford GT40 Lightweight used as a camera car for the same McQueen Le Mans movie, although the Ford had some racing history too.
1995 Ferrari F50
A 1995 Ferrari F50 sold for $3,222,500 as the top result of the Gooding Scottsdale 2020 sale and the highest result of any auction during the Scottsdale 2020 week. It was only the fourth F50 to have sold for over $3 million at public auction.
This 1995 Ferrari F50 is one of the 55 (out of 349 total) produced to US specifications. It was originally owned by Benny Caiola and had only two previous owners. It was sols with 5,200 miles on the clock.
2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray VIN 001
The world’s first mid-engine Corvette, the 2020 Chevrolet Stingray VIN 001, sold for $3 million as a charity lot in the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale 2020 collector car auction. Only one car sold for more during all the Scottsdale 2020 car auctions.
The actual 2020 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray VIN001 is still to be built and, in contrast to the model shown at the sale, will be a black-on-black Corvette powered by an 8-cylinder, 6.2-liter LT2 engine producing 495 hp.
The entire hammer price of this sale will benefit Detroit Children’s Fund – a non-profit organization that makes targeted investments to grow the number of quality schools in Detroit.
1965 Ferrari 275 GTB/C6
A 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB/C6 sold for $2,753,080 as the top result at the Artcurial Paris Rétromobile 2020 sale. The 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB, chassis #6785, was delivered new to full race spec with 6 carburetors and is considered one of the most-raced 275s in existence.
This Ferrari 275 GTB took part in over 40 international races between 1965 and 1968, including rally, track and hillclimb events. It featured on the cover of the Ferrari Yearbook in 1966, having won the GT class in the Monza 1000km that year. The car also competed in the European hillclimb championship with rounds at Mont Ventoux, Ollon-Villars and Cesana Sestriere, and the Rallye Solitude Lyon Charbonnière.
1932 Hispano-Suiza J12 Dual Cowl Phaeton
The 1932 Hispano-Suiza J12 Dual Cowl Phaeton, chassis 13016, that sold for $2,425,000 – half a million above upper estimate – was the most exciting of several 1930s cars on offer at Gooding Scottsdale 2020. It confirmed that even in a lackluster market, quality does sell.
The car is one of 120 J12 chassis ever produced and one of believed 10 open versions to have survived. Its rakish sports phaeton body is by Henry Binder of Paris. In 1954, chassis 13016 was purchased by famed collector Briggs Cunningham and remained in his collection for 35 years.
2018 Pagani Huayra Roadster
A 2018 Pagani Huayra Roadster sold for $2,370,000 as the top result of the RM Sotheby’s Arizona 2020 sale – a strong result, at public auction only a Tempesta had sold for more.
This Huayra Roadster was the 42nd of only 100 that are scheduled to be built in total. It is finished in blue tricolore with exposed carbon weave trim. With 200 miles on the clock, it is basically sold as new.
1958 BMW 507 Series II
The top result at the RM Sotheby’s Paris 2020 auction was for a 1958 BMW 507 Series II that achieved €1,996,250 ($2,195,875).
BMW produced only 252 cars of the 507 series. Only 34 cars, including this one, were exported to the USA.
This 507 was recently restored to its original factory condition. It retained its original engine and a glove compartment panel that seems to be signed by the car’s designer, Count Albrecht Goertz.
1964 Porsche 904 GTS
The fully matching-numbers 1964 Porsche 904 GTS (Est. €1.600.000 – €1.800.000) sold for an above-estimate €1,917,500 ($2,109,250).
This two-seat dual-purpose sports car retained its original engine and gearbox. The Porsche was raced by French driver Raymond Touroul in 1969 in the Tour de France and the Coupes de Vitesse at Montlhéry.
In the 2000s, the 904 was fitted with a period-correct Type 906 Carrera 6 engine to preserve the original powerplant, which has since been restored and was included with the car in Paris.
1948 Tucker 48
A 1948 Tucker 48 sold for a strong $2,040,000 at the Gooding Scottsdale 2020 classic car auction. Gooding achieved a similar result at Pebble Beach in 2014 – in between these two sales at least seven Tuckers were sold at auction but none above two million.
This Tucker 48, chassis 1034, was one of the cars actually assembled at the factory and not completed after production was halted. It is one of 12 (out of only 51 produced) that were finished in Waltz Blue metallic. The Tucker has only 6,200 miles on the clock.
2021 Lexus LC 500 Convertible Inspiration Series
The first production 2021 Lexus LC 500 Convertible Inspiration Series VIN 001 sold for $2,000,000, as a charity lot at the Barrett-Jackson 2020 Scottsdale auction. This Lexus LC 500 Convertible is one of only 100 Inspiration Series produced and will have the special VIN 100001. The car includes exclusive features not found on any other LC 500, including one-off color accents throughout.
1967 Ferrari 330 GTS
A stunning yellow 1967 Ferrari 330 GTS sold for $1,985,000 at the Gooding Scottsdale 2020 classic car auction. It is one of only 99 built – but another one sold at RM Sotheby’s a day earlier for a quarter of a million less.
The Pininfarina-bodied spider is fully restored and presented in a striking Giallo Fly over black leather. It is a Platinum Award winner.
Million-Dollar-Plus Cars at Public Auctions in 2020
Thus far in 2020, at least* 38 cars were sold at public auctions for over a million dollars. (*Definitions vary, results include auction premium and charity lots.)
- January 2020 – 24: 4 at Kissimmee (Mecum), 20 at Scottsdale / Arizona (1 at Bonhams, 5 at Barrett-Jackson, 8 at Gooding, 6 at RM Sotheby’s).
- February – 13: 14 at Paris Rétromobile (6 at Artcurial, 4 at Bonhams, 4 at RM Sotheby’s)
In the battle of the auction houses:
The list takes the published results of the following auctions into consideration:
- January 2020: Kissimmee (Mecum), Scottsdale Arizona (Barrett-Jackson, Bonhams, Gooding, RM Sotheby’s, Russo and Steele, Silver, Worldwide)
- February: Paris Rétromobile (Artcurial, Bonhams, RM Sotheby’s)
The next major classic car auctions include:
- March: Amelia Island (Bonhams, Gooding, RM Sotheby’s Russo and Steele), Glendale (Mecum), Goodwood Members’ Meeting (Bonhams), Palm Beach (RM Sotheby’s), Essen (RM Sotheby’s)
- April: Houston (Mecum), London (Gooding), Palm Beach (Barrett-Jackson)
- May: Monaco (Bonhams, RM Sotheby’s), Aston Martin Works (Bonhams), Indy (Mecum), Greenwich (Bonhams), Elkhart / Indiana (RM Sotheby’s), Auburn Spring (RM Sotheby’s)
- June: Portland (Mecum), Bonmont (Bonhams), Northwest (Barrett-Jackson)
- July: Goodwood Festival of Speed (Bonhams), Denver (Mecum), Harrisburg (Mecum)
- August: Monterey Week (Quail Lodge – Bonhams, Pebble Beach – Gooding, Mecum, RM Sotheby’s, Russo and Steele, Pacific Grove – Worldwide)
- September: Beaulieu (Bonhams), Goodwood Revival (Bonhams), Dallas (Mecum), Louisville (Mecum), Auburn Fall (RM Sotheby’s, Worldwide), Las Vegas (Barrett-Jackson)
- October: Chicago (Mecum), New York (Bonhams), De Zoute (Bonhams), London to Brighton (Bonhams)
- November: Las Vegas (Mecum)
- December: London (Bonhams)
Most-Expensive Cars of the Year
- Top-Ten Lists for 2020 (thus far), 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 & all time.
- $10 Million Plus – The Most-Expensive Cars of All Time