Bonhams Preserving the Automobile sale tops $3.3 million



2015-10-21 15:21:59

Bonhams' fourth annual Preserving the Automobile Auction realized more than $3.3 million in Philadelphia earlier this month.

The special sale at the Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum featured a selection of vehicles spanning more than a century of automotive design.

Leading the sale was a 1936 Wanderer W25 K Roadster, a highly rare, supercharged German sports car which sold for $319,000, followed by a 1908 Rainier Model D 45/50hp Seven Passenger Touring which realized $253,000.

There were also strong results for unrestored cars from the collection of Lex DuPont, the racing driver and heir to the DuPont chemical fortune.

His highly original 1937 Morgan Super Sports more than trebled its estimate, selling for $88,000, followed by a 1908 International Model A Runabout, a 1955 Arnolt-MG Coupe and a 1962 Jaguar E-type Series I 3.8-Litre Roadster which all surpassed their estimates.

Aside from the classic cars, the auction also featured a collection of historic locomotives from the Museum of Science & Industry in Chicago.

One of the highest price of the sale was achieved by the 'Mississippi' – a steam locomotive built in 1834 and used by both the Confederate and Union armies during the U.S Civil War – which sold for $220,000.

The Mississippi was acquired by an institutional buyer, as were the other machines from the Chicago museum's collection, including working replicas of the historic early 19th century 'John Stevens' and 'York' locomotives.

"We're very pleased with this year's sale," said Eric Minoff, Bonhams Head of Sale. "We had keen international interest, a strong sell-through rate, impressive results with many individual lots making records, and a well attended, highly successful auction.

"This year's event once again demonstrates that motorcars with sound provenance and in original condition are increasingly sought after by collectors."

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