By on April 2, 2021

VIN 001

VIN 001s are a rarity few can appreciate, let alone afford. Barrett-Jackson, auctioneers with aplomb, moved a handful of them last weekend at their auction in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Who can afford a VIN 001 is less important than why. After all, VIN 002 and any produced thereafter are the same. Will VIN 001 produce a sizable return on investment if you hold it 20, 30, maybe 50 years? Or are there bragging rights that go beyond tangible benefits that only auction regulars can recognize?

The big dog this last go-round was the 2022 GMC Hummer EV Edition 1, whose VIN 001 raised $2.5 million, benefitting the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation. Wherever this Hummer ends up, you can guarantee no passersby will know its pedigree.

VIN 001

Second to the Hummer was Ford’s 2021 Bronco 2-door VIN 001. At $1.075 million, the National Forest Foundation and Outward Bound were the happy recipients of someone’s generosity. That’s a lot of cheddar for the first Bronco out of the box. The auction’s PR firm issued a statement that the VIN 001 Bronco wasn’t going home with the buyer, to be delivered at a later date. Is this how they could possibly end up with more than one 001?

VIN 001

Another Ford, a 2021 Mustang Mach 1 Fastback VIN 001, raked in a half-million dollars for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. This Mach 1 has a 480-horsepower V8, a six-speed manual Tremec transmission, and the Handling Package. In Fighter Jet Gray, a color exclusive to the Mach 1, there’s a new front fascia, wheels, orange accents, and special badging. All of this will ensure you’ll recognize the real Mach 1 from its Mach E electrified sibling.

VIN 001

Ram tossed in their 2021 Ram 1500 TRX Launch Edition VIN 001 not to be left out. At $410,000, which went to the United Way for Southeastern Michigan, this 001 seemed like a bargain.

Yes, VIN 001s did very well for Barrett-Jackson and the charities. Does it result in a tax offset for the automakers in the form of a charitable donation? Or is it a way to measure the impact their vehicles have in this rarified atmosphere?

[Images: Barrett-Jackson]

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9 Comments on “Barrett-Jackson VIN 001s Boost Auction Results...”


  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    “Mach E electrified sibling”

    Cousin at best, Mach E is built on the Ford GE1 platform and Mustang is not (GE1 being a heavily modified C2 variant which underpins Escape and Focus).

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Global_Electrified_1_platform

  • avatar

    As I understand it is the charity project. Buyers pay that amount of money to participate in charity not for the real value. It means it is not an investment.

  • avatar
    ToolGuy

    Undisputed fact: VIN 001 gets *all* the recalls.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    I would love a normal Mustang GT in that color with no spoiler and wheels that fit over the PP1 brakes but look like base EcoBoost wheels. The Mach 1 is way too showy.

  • avatar
    namesakeone

    Wasn’t the first 1955 Ford Thunderbird also in this auction?

  • avatar
    Scoutdude

    It is the buyer that will get the big tax write off, not the mfg. The mfg can claim the msrp while the buyer can claim the difference between the price paid and the msrp.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    VIN 001 auctions are a great idea, especially when tied to a charity. Hadn’t heard of it before.

  • avatar
    islander800

    I always look forward to Barrett-Jackson auctions.

    I tried watching the live feed last week but could only take 5 minutes before I had to turn it off. The sight of all those wealthy bidders crowded together maskless in the middle of a bloody deadly pandemic was enough to turn my stomach. A display of mass selfish stupidity tends to do that. And before anyone comments about me being “brainwashed”, this isn’t about pathetic “owning the libs” politics, it’s epidemiology and caring for your fellow human being.

    Barrett-Jackson should be ashamed of themselves for that display.

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