Bids were flying around Barons’ Sandown Park saleroom on April 21st, when an extremely rare 1954 Bentley R-Type Continental Fastback ‘barn find’ restoration project went under the hammer. With an estimate of £200,000-£400,000, the car attracted frenzied bidding before it was finally secured by its new owner for £739,212*. This was the highest price Barons has ever achieved for a car – and other strong sales on the day brought the auction total to over £1 million, another company record for Barons.
It was not an easy bidding battle to win, with bids coming in from around the world. Barons’ staff were taking bids from 10 potential buyers over the telephone, 20 on the internet and a further 15 in the saleroom itself, as the bids began climbing in increments of £50,000 then tapering to increments of £25,000 before reaching the final, remarkable figure.
In the end the car went to a British owner, who will be adding this magnificent machine to his private collection. When restored his new acquisition – which has not been driven in 15 years – could be worth over £1,000,000.
Chassis BC52C was commissioned in 1954 by the Welsh racing driver R D Weatherall and was originally painted in his racing colour, Royal Purple. It still bears the registration number RDW 536. A subsequent owner, a doctor from Yorkshire, had the car re-sprayed in white, the colour it retains to this day.
Barons’ director Tony Cavell said, “This was an absolutely fantastic result. A ‘lost’ car always attracts collectors’ attention, and when it’s such a rare, iconic and valuable machine, that interest can lead to a frenetic bidding battle such as we saw yesterday. It will be fascinating to see the ‘journey’ the Bentley now takes, as its restoration commences.”
“This was the first sale that my fellow director Peter Gascoigne and I have fully assembled and presided over since we took the reins at Barons earlier in the year. We couldn’t have been more delighted with how things turned out, from the atmosphere in the saleroom to the final result. To top £1 million for the first time for Barons is a tremendous achievement, and it has been a privilege to play a role in finding a new home for a truly remarkable car.”
Other strong results achieved included the very beautiful 1934 Rolls-Royce 20/25, which drove past top estimate to sell for just under £41,000*, and a stately Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud III, which sold for £23,500*.
|Year||Make||Model||Sold @ Inc|
|1953||Bentley||R-Type Continental Fastback||£739,212|
|2001||Aston Martin||DB7 GTS Coupe||£25,772|
|1965||Rolls-Royce||Silver Cloud III||£23,532|
|1935||Austin||7 APD/E Military Tourer||£10,042|
|1968||Ford||Escort 1100 De Luxe||£9,756|
|2000||Rover||Mini Cooper 500LE||£8,132|
|1996||Alfa Romeo||V6 Spider||£7,852|
|1966||Wolseley||Hornet Heinz 57 Crayford||£7,852|
|1987||Harley Davidson||1200 Custom||£6,732|
|1989||Land Rover||Range Rover Vogue SE||£6,452|
|1989||Citroen||CX 2500 Gti||£5,612|
|1995||Daimler||Double Six LWB||£3,752|
|1985||Austin||Rover Mini Hot Rod||£3,652|
|2002||Land Rover||Range Rover||£3,596|
|1974||Reliant||Scimitar GTE SE5A||£2,924|
|1999||Jaguar||XJ8 4.0 V8||£2,364|
|1990||Mitsubishi||3000 GTO V6||£2,364|
|1978||Rolls-Royce||Silver Shadow I||£2,252|
|1950s||Child’s pedal car||£531|
*all prices include buyer’s premium and VAT.
Barons’ next sale will see another great British marque brought to the fore: its Classic, Collector and Jaguar Heritage auction will be at Sandown Park on June 16th.
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