The Artcurial Auction at the Retromobile Paris : the results

1971 Porsche 916 prototype “Brutus”

Probably the hammer price of the 1971 Porsche 916 was the most surprising at the Artcurial Auction in Paris. The car was nicknamed Brutus by Corina Piech (daughter of Ferdinand Piëch). It was the first prototype model of 11 cars built. The car was designed to add power to the Porsche 914, to be able to compete with mid-engine sports cars like the Ferrari Dino 246 GT. Brutus was the only 916 to be equipped with a factory 2.9-liter injection RSR engine, whilst the other ten cars were given a 2.4-liter 911S engine. Next to that, Brutus was the only Porsche 916 with an 85-liter competition fuel tank. Even though the Porsche 916 never evolved into a proper street or race car, this particular one (chassis 9141430195 ) remained in the Pïech family. Probably the provenance of the car added lots of value to the car. And that’s maybe a good explication for the heavy hammer price of €953,600.

1957 Porsche 550A Spyder 550-0126 Artcurial Paris
1957 Porsche 550A Spyder 550-0126 Artcurial Paris

No sale for the Porsche 356 Pre-A Cabriolet and the Porsche 550 Spyder

The cars that we expected quite a lof from, actually didn’t get sold. Both the 1953 Porsche 356 pre A Cabriolet and the Porsche 550 Spyder (chassis 550-0126)  didn’t meet the reserve. We had not the opportunity to inspect the cars. So it is hard for us to find an exact reason why cars like these didn’t sell. The Porsche 550 Spyder had a race history, with some great names at the wheel. After all Jaroslav Juhan and Huschke von Hanstein are impressive names. Add Robert Buchet to it, and one would expect spectacle, especially in Paris. We seemed to be wrong. Bidding stuck at €3,300,000 and didn’t meet reserve.

1953 Porsche 356 Pre A Cabriolet
1953 Porsche 356 Pre A Cabriolet (c) Artcurial,

Same story with the 1953 Porsche 356 Pre A Cabriolet. Our suspicion that this car would fetch a high price was even more fed by the fact that the 1950 Porsche 356 at the Bonhams auction raised very good money. This strengthened our belief that the Porsche 356 Pre A market may still be very attractive for buyers. However, once again, it was proven that it is very hard to predict the hammer price of a car that is being sold at an auction. The highest bid for the 1953 Porsche 356 1500 Super Pré A Cabriolet was €200,000. Hard to believe, isn’t it?  Anyway, no sale. 

Conclusion

Maybe the cars weren’t misrepresented and potential buyers found out? Or was anything completely wrong with the cars? We just don’t know. We believe there’s more that plays than just that. First of all, we do believe the market is weakening.  Second, we are convinced the best cars don’t even make it to an auction. These top-end cars change ownership from hand to hand. The collector’s world is not that large, and they all know each other. On the other hand, we are convinced too that at a price of €200,000, the new owner of the pre A Cabriolet would have had some spare change to finish the car the way it should have been. A missed opportunity… and yes maybe we are wrong.. please feel free to give me your comments about the cars too.

All the Porsches in the Artcurial Auction in Paris

Lot 44: 1944 Volkswagen Schwimwagen Sold for €119,200 +
Lot 58: 1956 Porsche 356 A cabriolet 1600 Chassis n°61350  Engine n°62822 Sold for €178,800 =
Lot 65: 1957 Porsche 550 A Spyder Chassis 550A-0126 Unsold, highest bid €3,300,000
Lot 122:  1953 Porsche 356 1500 Super Pré A Cabriolet Chassis n° 60205  Engine n° 40509 Reutter body n° 60205 Unsold, highest bid  €200,000 
Lot 123:  1970 Porsche 911 2.2L S Chassis No 9111300396  Engine No 6310672 Sold for €104,000 = 
Lot 124:  1971 Porsche 916 prototype “Brutus”  Chassis n° 9141430195   Sold for €953,600 ++
Lot 129: 2006 Porsche Carrera GT Unsold, highest bid €670,000
Lot 140: 1993 Porsche 911 Turbo 3.6 Sold for €232,440 =
Lot 141: 2018 Porsche 991 Turbo S Exclusive Sold for €266,587 –
Lot 142: 1960 Porsche Diesel Typ 128 Standard Sold for €15,496 =
Lot 145: 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 Unsold €120,000

Pictures courtesy : Artcurial Auction house