The RM Sotheby’s Porsche 70th anniversary auction : the results

1985 Porsche 959 Paris-Dakar Robin Adams ©2018 Courtesy of RM Sotheby's

Over 90% of the Porsches sold in the Porsche 70th anniversary auction valueing $25.8 million  

The Porsche 70th anniversary auction by RM Sotheby’s at the Porsche Experience Center in Atlanta was a great ending of the celebrational year in the USA. Hundreds of Porsche enthusiasts gathered on Friday at the preview day to see the cars, literature and memorabilia that were crossing the block on Saturday October 27th. Bidders from 25 countries made the auction very vivid and spirited. It all started with some great lots of Porsche memorabilia and literature.

Porsche literature prices were booming

And we can only say that the prices hammered for some of the literature was stunning. We wonder if a new standard is set for some literature ? Or was it just some bidders who did not have themselves in hand during the auction. What to think of a hammer price of $11.400 for the Porsche RS 60 Driver’s manual.

Rare Porsche 718 RS60 Spyder Manual : Hammer price $11.400
Rare Porsche 718 RS60 Spyder Manual : Hammer price $11.400

 Or how about $2280 for the Porsche RS book by Konradsheim and Gruber ? We all know it is very collectible but I’ve never seen a price like that. But perhaps the most stunning was the price for the lots with Porsche 356 sales  literature and Porsche 911 sales literature : these sold respectively for $18.000 and $20.400. The Porsche 356 Gmund sales brochure however sold for $3.360, a rather conservative price and more in the market.

All the Porsche literature and memorabilia together totalled a sum of no less than $228.930, that is without the junior children’s cars and the 2 engines that were for sale. Amazing, isn’t it ?

Slow interest for the Porsche Junior Children’s Cars

None of the 4 Porsche Junior Children’s Cars was hammered at a price close to the lower estimate. On the contrary. Porsche 356 Speedster Junior , the Porsche 550 Spyder Junior and the Porsche 904 GTS Junior didn’t even reach the half of the lower estimate .However, they were sold without reserve. The buyers of these Porsche toys were lucky. The Porsche 917 Junior car sold for $31.200 but with an estimation of $50,000 – $60,000, another ‘bargain’ for the buyer. I presume the sellers of these Porsche juniors have had better days.

Lot Description Hammer price, premium included
155 Porsche 356 Speedster Junior Children’s car $9,000
156 Porsche 550 Spyder Junior Children’s car $7,800 
157 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS Children’s car $9,600
158 Porsche 917 Junior Children’s car $31,200

1 of only 3 Porsche 959 Paris-Dakar sold for $5,945,000

It was the very first time a Porsche 959 Paris-Dakar was sold at an auction. Not a surprise when you know only 3 of these cars have ever been built. And even though the estimated price was between $3,000,000 and $3,400,00, the effective hammer price was way higher. After a vivid bidding battle, the hammer fell at a price of $5,945,000.

We’ve reported before about the Porsche Classic ‘s Project Gold that was sold at the Porsche 70th Anniversary sale. No matter what you think about the project on itself, it was obvious that the “Project Gold” would attract lots of interested bidders with deep wallets. And the final hammer price of $2,700,000 proves that.

Unsold Porsche 356 Pre-A, Porsche 956 and Porsche 911 RSR’s

Despite the strong interest for both the Project Gold car and the 1985 Porsche 959 Paris-Dakar, some cars seemed to be less interesting for the bidders. And actually I am a bit surprised about that.First of all the split-window Porsche 356’s that come on the block. The 1951 Porsche 356 Split-window Cabriolet remained unsold at a highest bid $460.000, well below the lower estimate of $650,000. Same story for the 1951 Porsche 356 Coupe that was hammered at $525.000 and didn’t change owner. Estimatation fork for the 1951 Porsche 356 Coupe was $600,000 – $800,000.

More surprises with both the Porsche 911 RSR 2.8 and Porsche 911 RSR 3.0 that didn’t find a new owner. The highest bid for the Porsche 911 2.8 RSR was $2,000,000 (lower estimate $2,400,000) . The bidder that wanted to pay $1.775.000 for the Porsche 911 RSR 3.0 will not bring the car home. The bid didn’t meet the reserve, and was just below the lower estimation of $2,000,000.

1983 Porsche 956 Matthew Howell © 2018 Courtesy of RM Sotheby's. Unsold , highest bid $3,500,000
1983 Porsche 956 Matthew Howell © 2018 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s. Unsold , highest bid $3,500,000

The 1983 Porsche 956 Group C (Chassic 956-110) car didn’t meet reserve either. The overall winner of the 1983 Brands Hatch 1000 Km and the 1983 Can-Am Road America was believed to sell for an estimated $5,250,000 – 6,750,000. However , the highest bid of $3,500,000 remained well under the lower estimate. 


It may have been a bit surprising but we believe that the literature prices reached some insane prices. It is hard to believe that these will be the new standars, but on a collectors market you never know. On the other hand ,a very rare piece like the Porsche 356 Gmund brochure sold for a very moderate price. When it comes to cars, it is very clear. The tops of the market some years ago are long gone. But unfortunately for some owners, and maybe auction houses, the top prices of back then are still considered the standard. These standards are used to determine the estimation forks, and the reserves by the sellers. No wonder in a market that has been slowing down for a while now, these reserves aren’t met. 

The Results for alle the Porsches in the RM Sotheby’s Porsche 70th anniversary auction