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9/8/2017 3:37:00 PM
Auctions America sets record for Labor Day 2017 sales

Greater Fort Wayne Business Weekly

Auctions America sold 79 percent of the cars and memorabilia offered in its Labor Day weekend sale, including a classic that set a new price record, the company said.

Spectators cheered Saturday as bids reached $2.1 million on a 1933 Duesenberg Model SJ Phaeton, but that was not enough to buy the majestic car. “We’re really close,” an auctioneer said, hinting that a deal could be struck later.

The sale took place outside public view Sunday for $2.3 million, making it the most valuable automobile sold in Auctions America’s seven-year history. The company said the transaction demonstrated “the continued efforts of Auctions America’s ‘Still for Sale’ team after each hammer falls.” The auction company did not disclose the names of the buyer and seller.

The Duesenberg contributed to a total of $19.2 million in sales over the four-day auction, Aug. 31- Sept. 3.

In a sale watched by spectators Sept. 2, Steve Plaster of Missouri bought a 1929 Model J Convertible Coupe for $990,000, the 2017 auction’s second-highest price. The third-place price of $269,500 went to a 1953 Chevrolet Corvette.

Auctions America said two groups of cars from single collectors, sold at no reserve, outperformed expectations. On Sept. 1, a 1931 Cadillac V-8 more than doubled its estimate at $169,400. Saturday saw a 1958 Buick Limited Convertible sell for $239,250, exceeding its pre-sale estimate of $175,000-$225,000, and a 1956 Mercury Montclair brought $137,500 against an estimate of $75,000-$100,000.

Charity bidding on a private tour of comedian Jay Leno’s personal garage brought a donation of $35,000. Joe Sahlen of Elma, New York, placed the winning bid, which will be divided between Honor Flight of Northeast Indiana and Leno’s own JDM Charities.

Auctions America also pledged to donate $25,000 of its proceeds from Auburn Fall to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.

The company said its Saturday morning Cars & Coffee event drew more than 200 vehicles, and celebrity appearances by former NASCAR champion Rusty Wallace and Dave Kindig of Velocity Channel saw hundreds of fans line up for autographs.

The sale took place in a freshly renovated auction arena. Company officials affirmed their commitment to the Auburn site.

“We’re proud of our success in restoring the Auburn Auction Park and bringing the annual Auburn Spring and Fall events to new heights,” said Donnie Gould, who leads the Auctions America team and has been coming to Auburn since childhood. “Thanks to our international marketing reach and in response to client demand, we’ve been able to continually increase the quality of cars on offer at Auburn Fall, which shone through this year in a 26 percent increase in the average sale price per lot.”

Gould added, “The Auburn Auction Park is rooted in collector car history. We have already invested significant resources in the park and look forward to furthering this investment in an effort to elevate the client experience and seamlessly serve the entire spectrum of the collector car market.”

Auburn Fall is the flagship sale on the calendar for Auctions America, an RM Sotheby’s company, which bought the auction park in 2010. The park also hosts the Auburn Spring sale every year in May.

Copyright 2017 KPC Media Group, Inc.

Editor, John C. DePrez Jr.; Executive Editor, Carol Rogers; Publishers: IBRC and IAR

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