Cox Forecasts Used Vehicle Pricing Trends for 2023
Wholesale used-vehicle prices continued to climb during the last weeks of 2022, though the overall trend actually had secondhand valuations down by 15 percent for the entire year. That’s due largely to auction prices cooling off after the summer ended and the situation has many speculating that 2023 could be the first year we see massively inflated car prices begin to return to normal.
It's Monterey, Jack: RM Sotheby's Hopes to Make Bank in California
Those of you who prefer wine and cheese over beer and burgers would probably find yourself at the Monterey Car Week 2022 & Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance rather than the Woodward Dream Cruise – both are held on the third weekend of August. While your author is firmly in the latter’s camp, he appreciates the bonkers amount of money being tossed around at the former.
As they often do, RM Sotheby’s will be using the occasion to hold a high-dollar auction. Lots include the likes of a 1955 Ferrari 410 Sport Spider by Scaglietti allegedly raced by Fangio himself.
Junkyard Find: 1966 Ford Falcon Club Wagon
Rental Agencies Uncharacteristically Buying Used Cars
With rental companies coming off a particularly lean 2020, fleet downsizing turned out to be a necessity for many agencies. Unfortunately, demand for rental vehicles has begun to return and some markets have found themselves operating with an insufficient number of cars. The upside to this is the ability to charge exorbitant fees for models nobody wanted to rent in the first place. But businesses can’t cash in on vehicles that didn’t get rented, leaving agencies desperate for new product that’s been backlogged by the auto industry’s semiconductor shortage.
The solution is a novel one, at least for rental companies. Rather than gamble the business on whether or not supply chains normalize before summer, they’ve been prowling auctions and hoovering up used cars in record numbers.
1970 Dodge Challenger Selected Barrett-Jackson Best in Show
A 2,000 horsepower 1970 Dodge Challenger was selected Best in Show from a group of 50 vehicles at the Barrett-Jackson auction this past weekend in Scottsdale, Arizona, and awarded the 2021 Barrett-Jackson Cup. The Challenger was among five finalists, including a ’32 Ford Tudor, ’55 Chevrolet Bel Air, ’63 Chevrolet Bel Air Wagon, and a ’70 Ford F-100 Pickup.
QOTD: High School Superstar?
If you’re someone who enjoys thinking back to your high school days, you were either exceedingly popular at the time (jerk!) OR achieved absolutely nothing in later life. The two are not mutually exclusive.
Four touchdowns in a single game at Polk High — that kind of thing.
Others only think back out of distaste for the present and nostalgia for that long-ago era; the simplicity of life, the fashions, the relaxed social and regulatory norms… and the cars populating the student lot. It’s more than a little jarring to see near-mundane rides that could have been had for a few grand in my senior year now fetching eye-popping prices on Bring a Trailer.
Thinking back, should you have invested in an airtight car bubble upon graduation?
Wheels N' Deals: Good Buys at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale 2020
Making the pilgrimage to the big top building at Westworld in Scottsdale to experience the insanity that is Barrett-Jackson’s flagship is a trip that should be undertaken by every red-blooded gearhead. Equal parts car show, party, and sale, the annual desert soirée is gloriously mad in all the right ways.
Of course, there are plenty of people who carp that vehicles at Barrett-Jackson fetch too much money and, indeed, some of them do. Witness the 1995 BMW M3 Lightweight that traded for an eye-watering $385,000 simply because Paul Walker’s name was on the ownership.
However, many of those same people are simply making noise on the internet and have no plans (or means) to, y’know, actually buy something. They’ll also bemoan the so-called Bring-a-Trailer premium instead of simply appreciating the weird and wonderful cars that appear.
Here’s the simple fact: there are deals to be had. While on the ground in Scottsdale, we sought out a few we figured would be of interest to you, the reader. And to prove a point, of course.
QOTD: Big Bucks Surprise?
It’s no secret that wherever enthusiasts — of any person, place, or thing — get together, mad money soon follows. Look at the huge money being commanded for certain rock n’ roll memorabilia, or rare artwork by a noted painter. Your author just bid obscene money for a frame containing handwritten liner notes, a platinum record, and a picture signed by some famous Canadian musicians. My bank account weeps but my office walls are happy.
It is the same, of course, with cars. Some recent models have skyrocketed in value, while a few others have traded on famous names. What’s been your biggest surprise of late?
QOTD: Witness to Auction Shenanigans?
Over the weekend at Monterey, RM Sotheby’s executed what will forever remain one of the worst screw-ups in auction history. With a piece of is-it-or-isn’t-it Porsche history on the block, the auctioneer started his patter at what the crowd (and the media screen) thought was thirty million dollars. That same media screen quickly rocketed to seventy mil before said auctioneer clarified he was saying seven-teen not seven-ty. Boos rained down upon the room and bidding predictably evaporated like chloroform. The car failed to sell.
Conspiracy theorists will forever debate what really happened, but our question for you today is this: what’s the biggest error — either in buying or selling — you’ve ever seen at a car auction?
QOTD: Are These Bucks Too Deluxe?
This weekend, someone raised their bidder’s number at Barrett-Jackson in Las Vegas when the auctioneer asked for $58,000. It wasn’t on a Hemi ‘Cuda convertible. Nor was it on a tasty ’70 Chevelle SS. It was on the 1997 Acura Integra Type R you see above.
After buyer’s fees, the new owner shelled out $63,800 for what may very well be the lowest-mileage ITR in existence. Do you think collector’s tastes have shifted? Maybe permanently?
Phoning It In: Rick Hendrick Buys ZR1 #001
The most gonzo of all current Corvettes, the ZR1, packs a 755 horsepower wallop from its supercharged LT5. Chevrolet, as it has in the past with other notable versions of popular models, offered up the first retail copy to the highest bidder at Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale.
Rick Hendrick, who is reported to already own a couple of Chevys, ponied up the cash and won the auction … despite not even being in the room.
First 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt Sells for $300,000 at Auction
While Ford hasn’t announced the pricing of the new Bullitt Mustang, the first example just sold for three-hundred grand at auction. We’re presuming future production models will be considerably more affordable because, damn, that’s a lot to spend on an appearance package and a few extra horses — even if the end result is undeniably cool.
Fortunately, all the proceeds went to supporting the Boys Republic — a charity near and dear to Steve McQueen. In addition to being remanded to the school after his own mother signed a court order that he was “incorrigible,” a matured McQueen often visited its children during the holidays and frequently donated large sums of money to the organization.
Rare Rides: This Racy Oldsmobile Bravada Kept Pace at Indy 500
Last time on Rare Rides, we carried the racing [driver] and special edition themes to new heights, and featured a shockingly bad Jeff Gordon Monte Carlo special edition of which there were 24 copies made. Our ride today is still made by General Motors, and it’s still about racing, but it’s larger and even more rare. It’s also better, because it has an Oldsmobile logo on the front (albeit not the superior rocket one).
Oh yeah, and it’ll go 140 miles per hour.
Rare Rides: A Sporty Saleen for Your "Domestic" Super Car Needs
When you put pen to paper and start making a list of American super car models, it doesn’t take long to conclude that The Land of the Free is not a leading purveyor of the species. In fact, you can fit the list on a standard Post-It. Google reckons there are just four generally — Ford GT, Hennessey Venom GT (which are current), a couple of Mosler MTs, and the Saleen S7 (which are deceased).
So come and check out a rare example of what happens when [s]American[/s] British engineering meets super car specifications, and then it all gets screwed together in the U.S. of A.
QOTD: Place Your Bets?
It’s the dream of us all, isn’t it? Knowing tomorrow’s lottery numbers. Correctly predicting the long-shot Super Bowl winner before putting down a big bet in Vegas. I don’t know about you, but as a gearhead I harbor similar fantasies about the Next Big Thing in collector cars.
The collector car market has waned somewhat from the breathless heights of 10 years ago. Sure, there are still pockets of crazy money — witness Hemi ‘Cudas that can still trade for outrageous sums, not to mention air-cooled Porsches and Pebble Beach with their Holy Grail Ferraris hammering away for many tens of millions of dollars.