2017 Gooding & Company Pebble Beach Auctions
This event set the bar for our Car Week adventure this year, and it set the bar pretty high. Still a bit groggy from our 4:00AM departure and 3 hour drive, we were shaken awake by the sight of one of the headliner cars for the weekend's auctions. This 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB/C, under lights and a chandelier was a bit overwhelming. Apparently, it wasn't too overwhelming to one lucky bidder, as it sold for a jaw dropping $14,520,000 on Saturday night. This was the most expensive car sold at the Gooding Auction and the 3rd most expensive car to be sold at any Car Week Auction this year.
As amazing as that car was though, the real show stopper (for us anyway) was still to come. Through the second set of doors was a gut-punchingly amazing field of cars for us to consider. As was the case when we attended our first Gooding event last year, it's really difficult to know where to start. The array of cars was so spectacular that we momentarily forgot which one was at the top of our list to see. We simply dove in and worked the substantial room in a counterclockwise manner. We could easily profile all the cars we fell in love with as we made out way through the cars, but that would be ridiculous...plus, that's why we always have a gallery of pretty pictures at the end of everything we do. That said, there are a few that we want to share. The first is this amazing and be-snorkeled 1974 Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 TT 12. It was particularly memorable because it's gorgeous engine was displayed right next to it. Don't tell anyone but some TLP drool may have dripped on a valve cover. It had an auction estimate at between $2.4 and $2.8 million, but at the end of the evening, it did not sell.
These survivors (below) were probably the most interesting cars for us at Gooding. The 1957 300 SL Roadster and 1955 300 SL Gullwing were amazingly owned by only one family, from new, before being offered for this auction. They were dusty, worn and sweaty, but also unmolested and incredibly complete and documented. The fact that they survived together all this time, and in such amazing condition, defies belief. Both cars defied their high auction estimates and sold for $1,034,000 and $1,677,500 respectively.
For a couple of Porsche fanboys like us, the car of the auction was easily the Gulf liveried 1970 Porsche 917 K...duh! It was...breathtaking...stupefying...amazing....and a bunch of other words that don't do this car justice. It was owned, at one time by Jo Siffert, and was used extensively in the production of Steve McQueen's endurance racing epic, "Le Mans." Yeah, this car is the stuff of very good dreams. We were even treated to a peek under the engine cover by Gooding's Media Director, Tyler Gagnon. (Thank You Tyler!!!) Not surprisingly, it was as well presented as the flawless exterior. The only bad thing about this car is that we weren't able to take it home. Sigh...it did however go home with one lucky bidder for $14,080,000.
Coolest car honors for the auction, according to us anyway, go to...er..uh..a jeep?
Not just any jeep, but an Italian army jeep, no less. An Alfa Romeo Jeep, no less. From the collection of the sensational collector, appraiser and larger-than-life personality, Donald Osbourne, no less! A true triple threat if ever there was one! Admittedly, a bit of an oddball among the multimillion-dollar hardware in the room, this jolly green not-so-giant stood tall among all the other talent, demanding to be seen and appreciated. Army green never looked so good. One lucky bidder forked over $67,100 american dollars for this Italian gem, and for that money, they got a very capable Mille Miglia eligible urban assault vehicle.
The takeaway is that Gooding & Company puts on one helluva show (as if there'd been some doubt). The cars were amazing, just as you'd expect from one of the world's prestigious auction houses during one of the automotive world's premiere events. (Frankly we'd probably say the same thing if the auction consisted of a giant room devoid of everything but the aforementioned Porsche 917) Chubb Insurance made it all the better by plying us with free espresso drinks (which was greatly appreciated after our pre-dawn departure).
The beauty of this auction is that if you're lucky enough to be able to be able to bid on the cars, then you get what you need out of the event! If, like us, you just just want to see some spectacular cars before they go home with new owners and share the experience with others, you also get what you need out of the event. We had a great time as we did last year and we're going to make this an annual Car Week fixture on our calendar if the the good people at Gooding will have us back again.
As always, we've included a picture gallery to compensate for all of our literary inadequacies.
-The Loud Pedal