duPont REGISTRY March 2015
$ 6.95

Dear Reader,

            Scottsdale Auto Extravaganza 2015:

Barrett-Jackson Auction

1,599 lots

$131.9 million

RM Auctions

  114 lots

$ 63.7 million

Gooding & Company Auction

  114 lots

$ 51.5 million

Bonhams Auction

    73 lots

$24.8 million

Russo & Steele Auction

414 lots

$17.2 million

Silver Auctions

218 lots

$3.5 million


            Well, the pundits are calling it a “plateau” in the values of classic, luxury and exotic cars.  They are saying this in general terms.  But, let’s be specific here – 2,532 cars sold at an average price of $115,729.  Both numbers up -- 10% and 8% respectively.  Gross sales were up 18% at $292 million for the week for all five auctions.  Take out the impact of Ron Pratte’s Collection “exit stage left” (or rather, right at Barrett-Jackson), the numbers are still up 4% and almost $10 million.  One heck of a plateau with one heck of a lot of buyers.  Remember, if the closing bids were $292 million, there was well over $500 million in play, if you include the under bidder.

            It is true that prices did vary, depending on model, marquee, and money.  Ferrari’s were dominant with the top price being $9.6 million.  As of Friday, horses (Ferrari’s) and Bulls (Lamborghini’s) controlled the top 9 spots and number 10 respectively.  Only after Pratte and some very, very special “Marques” did the top 10 include an American special (the GM Futureliner) a concept (Pontiac Bonneville Motorama Concept Car and a Cobra (Super Snake).  Post war exotic sports and muscle cars were dominant.   Other categories languished with a few significant exceptions.  All in all, lots of car, lots of money.

            The duPont REGISTRYTM was present in several venues.  Our “partnership display” at Barrett-Jackson was jammed all week, as was the entire site.  It was quite extraordinary, really, and a tribute to superior organization and execution.   Hats off to the entire Barrett-Jackson team.

            On Friday night, we all took a break at the duPont REGISTRY/LIVE “Auction After-Party”.  Almost 800 auto-enthusiasts filled the pool-deck at the fabulous W Hotel in downtown Scottsdale.  The “W” is a popular spot and a typical cool Scottsdale evening was warmed by spirits and music.  We were particularly delighted to entertain two special guests, in addition to our very best advertising partners and readers.  Actress, Sharon Stone stopped by with family and friends.  She had been at Barrett-Jackson earlier helping to auction off a special car.  And, NASCAR driver, Jeff Gordon, a regular auction week attendee, was there as well.  Two very different celebrities; both gracious and charming, and duPont REGISTRYTM enthusiasts.


As mentioned earlier, our display was full of enthusiasts.  It was all due to Starwood Motors, RTW Motoring, Argo, Ronald McDonald House, Z Clip, Goldin Auctions, and Sky Hawk Binoculars -- delightful folks, every one of them, and excellent representatives of our brand of media.

            One final note:  Large and extraordinary auctions always have a car or two (or more) that appeal to even the most ideo-centric and/or eccentric interests.  My first ride was a 1964 Pontiac GTO Convertible, 4-barrel, V-8, Hurst shifter, wooden steering wheel – a true muscle car.  At auction was a 1964 Pontiac GTO convertible tripower V-8, Hurst, wooden wheel.  Fully restored.  Only difference was color.  Tempted, I bid a few times.  Hammer price:  $300,000 US – WOW!  Nostalgia has its price!

            Boca Raton Concours d’Elegance ( February 22; Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance ( March 15; and Barrett-Jackson Palm Beach ( April 17-19  are just around the corner.  I hope to see you there!

Happy Motoring,



Thomas L. duPont

P.S.  Further proof that it was quite a plateau, was the startling lack of European, Asian, Russian and Middle-Eastern buyers.  2,532 cars is a lot to absorb without the usual impact of free-flowing oil profits and an undervalued dollar.  There is serious benefit to the low cost of fuel and the growing U.S. economy.  God Bless the U.S.A.

P.S.S.  Driving privileges included the use of a 2015 Infinity QX70.  It’s an unbelievable ride for the cross-over/SUV class; right-size, well engineered.  All in all, consider the QX70 a highly recommended set of wheels with all the buttons, bells, lights that all the high-tech drivers need.  Thanks to PageOne Automotive for taking care of my needs with this top of the line vehicle.

NOTE:  Auction statistics and data courtesy of “Your Friends at Hagerty”.  Great and timely information on the marketplace!