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Record-Breaking Car Auctions

Record-Breaking Car Auctions
February 8, 2023
Bradley Calleja


It's been the word of the year(s) within collectible and memorabilia markets from sports cards to comic books.The vintage car market had long been a premier class of collectibles with post-war Corvettes, Mustangs, and Ferraris commanding six and seven-figure prices at auction. While historically it's been characteristics like age, body styling, and high-performance engines that have captivated collectors, there seems to be a new "emerging" attribute that's already shaking the auction market.Enter: Gas-powered vehicles.Okay, it might be a little premature to toss all cars powered by ethanol into the "vintage" category or to otherwise exalt them, especially considering more than 90% of all cars on the road today still use internal combustion engines rather than alternative sources such as electric.That fact still isn't stopping gas-fueled cars from becoming the hottest collectible on the auction block, especially as leading automakers have started to announce final production runs.

Last week, Bugatti sold its last (fully) gas-powered supercar at an auction hosted by RM Sotheby's in Paris for $10.7 million. The eight-figure price tag established a new record for any new car ever sold at public auction and doubled the pre-sale estimate of $4.5 million.The supercharged prices for supercars have been on ongoing trend through the first quarter of 2023 after Barrett-Jackson opened the year with a $184 million auction at their Scottsdale event in January. The auction was led by a 1989 Ferrari F40 which sold for $2.75 million, and when the final hammer had fallen, more than 200 world records has been recorded.

Altan's Insight: The record-breaking auction results might not have directly correlated to increased valuations for fractional investors, but it's worth noting the recent returns delivered by democratized cars. Rally was a trailblazer for collectible car investing, and today the platform offers a lineup of classics that have managed to outperform the majority of asset classes on their secondary market. In January, the Altan Insights Fractional Car Index gained 5.9% while 63% of cars trading on Rally's secondary market closed with a positive monthly return.

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