Blog & Talk


Millionenmarke für Mercedes Benz 320 Cabriolet B erstmals geknackt

1937 model fetched 1,045,000 dollars at an auction by Barret-Jackson in Palm Beach

It happened in April 2015:

A Mercedes-Benz 320 Cabriolet B built in 1937 changed hands for more than one million dollars for the first time at an auction held by the world’s largest auctioneer of collectable cars, Barret Jackson. 

Since the Mercedes Silver Arrow W 196 driven by Juan Miguel Fangio in 1954 was auctioned at the Goodwood Festival of Speed for 20.2 million dollars in 2013 it would appear that the floodgates have opened. The record-breaking results for classic luxury items are keeping the automobile scene increasingly breathless.

The biggest discovery of all time near Paris in 2015, the Baillon Collection, attracted worldwide attention. The first headline was the find in itself. The second which caused a major uproar in the car scene was the exorbitant auction prices which were achieved for the rusty vehicles. Some of them fetched more than 500% of the estimated price. 

Headlines such as these drive worldwide prices for classic cars into realms which would have been unimaginable just a few years ago. Such developments naturally alarm the ever-present pessimists and critics who predict a looming end to a “bubble” of the kind which existed in the 1990s. 

However, the situation in the 1990s in which the death of Enzo Ferrari caused cars bearing his name to fetch excessive prices financed primarily by third parties cannot be compared with today’s conditions. Loans taken back then could no longer be serviced due to enormous increases in interest rates and large numbers of Ferraris were thrown onto the market by distressed sellers. Supply very quickly exceeded demand and prices fell. 

The current situation looks completely different. The number of rich and super-rich people is increasing. These investors put their own money into classic cars and have no reason to sell them in the foreseeable future. 

Furthermore, the growth of interest in classic cars is not limited to Europe and the USA. New markets are currently emerging, for example in Asia. Car buffs like investors have been waiting a long time for more favourable import conditions and law changes which would make it easier to import classic cars into Asia. An enormous market is waiting here with almost unimaginable buying power for classic cars “made in Germany”. 

These million-dollar purchases are impressive. The increase in value of excellent classic cars is here to stay and prices will continue to rise because one thing is certain: 

The very nature of luxury classic cars means that their numbers are limited!