Clark Gable's Mercedes Gullwing makes $2m at Barrett-Jackson

paulfrasercollectibles

2015-06-26 13:08:14

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Clark Gable's Mercedes Gullwing makes $2m at Barrett-Jackson

A 1955 Mercedes Gullwing once owned by Clark Gable sold at the Scottsdale classic car auction

A 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Coupe once owned by Gone with the Wind star Clark Gable has auctioned for $2m at Barrett-Jackson in Arizona.

The vehicle was among the standout lots of the auction house's six day sale, and indeed provided one of the highlights of the week at Scottsdale, which has seen auctions offered by several of Barrett-Jackson's competitors - you can read more here.

Clark Gable GullwingThe Clark Gable connection doubled the Gullwing's value

One of just 1,400 Gullwings produced by the German company between 1954 and 1957, similar examples from 1955 tend to sell for between $500,000 and $1m.

The $2m figure is strong evidence of the allure of the Gable name with collectors; Gable's 1935 Duesenberg received bids of $6.4m in August yet failed to meet its reserve - more the result of an unrealistic price tag than a lack of interest.

The strong provenance of the Gullwing, which features a wood and chrome Nardi steering wheel installed by Gable, was also a factor.

Gable bought the Gullwing at Mercedes-Benz of Hollywood and it came complete with the original papers, bearing Gable's signature, alongside that of his fifth wife, Kay Sprekels Gable.

Upon Gable's death in 1960, his publicist Harry Haeigen took on the vehicle, selling it in 1975 to Charles Wood, the owner of Grand Stand Amusement Park.

Having undergone a major restoration in 1989 it was consigned by Oklahoma-based collector Robert Howard.

"Gable's 300SL is a stunning vehicle on its own, but it's the pedigree that comes with it that really makes this Mercedes one-of-a-kind," said Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson, prior to the sale.

One of just 29 alloy-bodied Gullwingmodels ever built sold for 2.4m ($3.8m) in November.

The past week's sale also featured the $4.6m auction of the original Batmobile.

View our fine stock of motor racing collectibles here.

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