The rust coloured Kestrel hovered effortlessly. As if startled by the small raptor, a flock of starlings sprang up excitedly. Like an airborne Mexican wave they swooped and climbed across the wide open fens.
We’re in the East Anglian countryside where mist filled day makes it hard to discern where the skies stop and land begins. But it also means we are on our way to Anglia Car Auctions first classic car sale of the year. See how we got on.
Lot 34. Alfa Romeo S4. An interesting car. Confirmed as being owned by the great thriller writer Jack Higgins, who penned Where Eagles Dare, amongst many others. It was a No Reserve car. It wasn’t perfect. But perfectly driveable. You’d be buying a level of unpredictability inherent in any Italian car but hey-ho. Sold. £6,700. He who dares Rodney, he who dares….
Lot 160. 1986 10v Audi Quattro Turbo. A very original car that had popped out of a ten year slumber in storage and in doing so benefited from a £8,000 recommissioning bill. Brakes, belts, tyres, fluids, service, the lot. The car was ready to go. At 76,000 warranted miles it was always going to get a lot of attention. It did. It sold well. £28,000. Good car.
Lot 133. Austin Mini Clubman Estate. From long term ownership. The last one for 30 years, the car was restored a good few years ago and since has had some nice period mods added, included a warmed-up 100bhp 1380 engine. It looked rather nice and we suspect great fun to bomb about in. Sold. £8700. Cheap car in our view.
Lot 201. Talking of a warmed-up engine. A 1988 BMW M3 Evo. This has to be the ultimate doesn’t it? A very well looked after, all original car, right down the tool kit. The auction room got very excited about this car. Rightly so. Sold. £69,000. Wow! No holding back by buyers on that one.
Lot 181. A 1981 Ford Capri 3.0ltr Ghia X-Pack. Ford Motor Company’s very own muscle car. Well, not quite, but these were very nice. Sadly, if we were honest (we always are) this wasn’t the nicest. But these rarely come to market so, hey, beggars shouldn’t be too picky. It had a Guide Price of £18,00 – £24,000. Sold for a smidgen under £26,000. We’re not sure whether that is good value or not. You tell us. We’re sure you will.
Lot 49. No doubting the value on our next Ford. A 1981 Cortina MkV GL, with just 8,384 from new. It looked it too. Everything was right, from the steering wheel, to the pedal rubbers, through to the outside. It was undoubtedly helped by being covered in ‘orrible sticky, gummy waxoyl at some point in its early life. Just as well or else it would have dissolved before the owners very eyes, like all the others! Sold. £5,400. Find another one like this!
Lot 10. A 1963 Hillman Super Minx Convertible. Not much to say about this. It was red. It’s a Hillman. It’s a ‘60s classic. Today it looks retro and ice cold, sub zero, uber cool. We’d have no problem swanning this about as our daily driver. Sold. £5,500. Gutted we missed it. Gutted.
Lot 182. A 1961 Series 1 E-type, 3.8, flat floor. If this car, which Enzo Ferraro himself described as the most beautiful car he’d ever seen, isn’t the epitome of cool, we give up. Literally. Give. Up. In stunning opalescent blue with black interior, it had been with the last owner for 35 years. We bet he was balling his eyes out when the hammer went down. A beautiful car. Sold. £96,000.
Lot 12. 1965 MGB Roadster. Is 2020 going to be the year that the wonderful MG’s are seen for the value that they. They’ve been ridiculously good value for too long now. That surely cannot go on much longer can it? This car had 53,000 miles on, a great provenance from an original Downton Dealer, it came with some tuning goodies already including a Stage One Head etc. With a nice document pack, it was just a great little car. If the prices of this one are a sign, maybe MG values are finally going up? Sold. £12,700.
Lot 211. Reliant Scimitar GTE SE5A. Talking about over-looked, under-valued cars, what about these beauties. A quintessentially all British sport car, built in the great tradition of great British sports cars. A plastic body weighing the same as a nest of baby sparrows, a massive engine that wants to rip itself off its mountings, crap brakes and some period brown coloured interior. What. Is. Not. To. Like. This one was a previous Show Winner that had been in storage since 2010. With a low Guide Price of £6000-£8000 we expected some raucous auction action. But…. it did not sell. Unbelievable.
Lot 180. Renualt 5 GT Turbo. This cracker was a minor film star in its own right having taking a starring role in an episode of TV’s Car SOS. Since being very well restored by Fuzz T, over three years ago the car has covered 100m. It was a very, very nice example. Sold. £14,500.
What to make of the first Sale of 2020?
Was everyone startled like a flock of starlings or were there some hawks, hovering, waiting to strike?
We can tell you this. The room was flippin’ packed! The slight hesitancy of 2019 which has transferred a latent flatness to prices, it seemed to us, like 2020 at Anglia, was gone. The bidding was literally fast and furious. If you snoozed you losed. Simple as that. We’re a touch embarrassed to say we were asleep on watch a couple of times, with the speed of bidding we just missed out. We smiled, ruefully. There’s always another day. On the up side, customers look keen to grab cars. We’re guessing, (we’re quite good at guessing), that businesses are looking for stock? And private buyers who’ve held back a little were fed up with waiting and turned up en-masse.
In comparison, some prices were down on some models from say two years ago. But on the flip side, cars that have suffered bid drops, such as £100k E-types are unquestionably back in favour.
All in all an interesting day with much to talk about, which you can do with us on our social media. The links are below.
Thanks for all your custom in 2019, our team look forward to helping you in 2020, whether that is to Drive Your Dream or give you help and advice from one of our expanding chroming, resto or trim departments. Give us call, we’d love to help.