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Bonjour to Paris Car Auction Brings in $28M+

The Petitjean Ferrari Collection, among others, crushes presale estimates

By Leo Shvedsky
February 16 2022
RM Sotheby’s cars live up to high expectations crushing presale estimates and taking home €25 million in one-day sales / RM Sotheby’s 

The 2022 elite car auction season started with a bang last week in Scottsdale, with Barrett-Jackson setting the seasonal tone promptly followed by the Ninth Annual Paris Auction held earlier this week in the City of Lights. A robust inventory with six and seven-figure estimates rode the Scottsdale wave into the Paris auction, evidence the West is the barometer of trendsetting chic. 

While RM Sotheby’s Paris auction is nothing close to the wild west, the glamor and grandiose environment is quintessentially French. The auction rests romantically in the town-center with only a short walk to the Eiffel Tower and eclipsed by the Dôme des Invalides; its easy to see why thousands of automotive enthusiasts came from 38 different countries to get a taste of the city and the cars. 

1985 Ferrari 288 GTO (estimate €2,400,000 – €2,600,000) crushed estimates selling for  €3,464,375 / Alex Penfold ©2021 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s 

The excitement flew into auction day with intense bidding wars over famous collections and luxurious vehicles resulting in one-day sales totaling €24,913,510 million, with most far-exceeding estimated presale prices. How very French to expect the unexpected. 

Stealing the show was the famed Petitjean Collection' Part II' comprised of 28 Ferrari road cars manufactured between 1959-1989. What is the Part II, one may ask? Former race car driver and French racing god Marcel Petitjean reached into his pockets once again (part I occuring in 2020) to reveal more of his massive Ferrari collection, offering to the highest bidder. 

28 Ferraris were auctioned off from the private collection of Marcel Petitjean at the 2022 Paris auction / Alex Penfold ©2022 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s 

All 28 were competitively auctioned, but the top earner was the 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO selling for €3,464,375. The supercar's sale broke auction records for the make and model of Ferrari. Second to the 1985 288 GTO was the sale of a 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 by Scaglietti that will certainly turn heads driving along the Avenue des Champs-Élysées. The cherry red beauty landed the gavel down at €2,367,500. 

Cherry red 1966 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 (estimate €1,700,000 – €2,000,000) sold over its estimated range for €2,367,500 / Alex Penfold ©2021 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s 

1964 Ferrari 250 GT/L Berlinetta Lusso by Scaglietti, a sight to behold, sold for €1,186,250. The rarity of the model, the famous former-owner and stamp of Ferrari carried its weight, and will be well worth the drive. 

Hailed as one of the most desirable of the Ferrari collection, the 1964 Ferrari 250 GT/L Berlinetta “Lusso” (estimate €900,000 – €1,100,000) sold over presale estimates at €1,186,250 / Alex Penfold ©2021 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s 

But what about the others? Surely in the inventory (91% sold) had to feature non-Petitjean stars. And yes, it certainly did. Paris offered up the Petitjean Ferrari Collection with grace but also brought the gavel down with an impressively stacked 1994 Bugatti EB110 GT that sold for a deserving €1,805,000.  

1994 Bugatti EB110 GT held strong in Paris selling for an impressive €1,805,000 / Courtesy of Bonhams 

Other top sellers included the 1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster and 1954 Fiat 8V Coupé. The Mercedes-Benz sold for a competitive €916,250, while the Fiat sat comfortably behind at €905,000. Analysts suspect the grand success of the 1958 300 SL Roadster was due primarily to the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing Alloy sale in Scottsdale for $6,825,000, demonstrating the importance of one auction building off another with result-driven sales. 

1958 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster sold for €916,250 in Paris after the success of its counterpart Gullwing sold in Scottsdale / RM Sotheby's 

The winner for the Paris’ biggest sleeper goes to the 1983 Ferrari Meera S by Michelotti, providing shock and awe to auctioneers and attendees. Bidding eclipsed expectations, sweeping the floor at 245% overestimated, finally settling in at €432,500.

Surprising audiences and attendees, the 1983 Ferrari Meera S sold 245% overestimated at €432,500. / RM Sotheby's 

Auction on tap: the online Sotheby's Open Roads auction scheduled for February 16th-23rd. If the Scottsdale and Paris auctions are economic indicators of the impending success of 2022 car auctions, it's clear the competitive showdown is both a digital and event gaming realm that car enthusiasts and collectors are beyond ecstatic to play in.  




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