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Barrett-Jackson 50th Anniversary – What to Watch

Celebrating 50 years of rare and luxurious vehicles in Scottsdale, Arizona

Michelle Treadaway
January 20 2022

Westworld - Scottsdale, Arizona 

The Scottsdale auction attracts a huge gathering of spectators, as well as bidders and consigners | Barrett-Jackson 

This year marks the 50th anniversary of America’s No.1 Auction for car lovers, the Barrett-Jackson. For over 50 years, the Barrett-Jackson has set the pulse and tone for the auction industry offering rare and luxurious vehicles that are often one-of-a-kind.The buzz over the rare and valuable cars that cross the stage inside Westworld in Scottsdale, Arizona, is met with eager anticipation of crowds (an estimated 65,000 this year alone), live-streamed online and through network television while millions of viewers watch the nail-biting excitement of high stakes bidding. 

The auction originated in Scottsdale, Arizona and has since grown to become one of the most prestigious car auctions for collectors and one of the most exciting spectator auctions for audiences. In the early days of the event, Scottsdale wasn’t the glamorous hub that is representative of the city now. The landscape was relatively barren with expansive Sonoran Desert as far as the eye can see. The relatively unknown city didn’t have much buzz behind the name, but it did host as home to two of the biggest car collectors in the country, Russ Jackson and Tom Barrett. 

Barrett and Jackson families at Papago Park, Phoenix / Barrett-Jackson archives 

The famous founders met by chance and created an event that is known and loved by millions of spectators today. 

The "Car Show" at Russ' Car Wash in 1967 /  Barrett-Jackson archives 

The founder

Arizona locals Russ Jackson and Tom Barrett worked in the city of Phoenix in the advertising industry. The two met when Barrett was selling his 1933 Cadillac V16 purchased by none other than Russ Jackson. The car collectors and enthusiasts became fast friends and found they had a lot in common; both worked in vehicle advertising, they shared an affinity for collecting cars, and both had an entrepreneurial spirit that would found their first auction in 1967 known as the “Fiesta de los Elegantes.” The charitable cause partnered with community art programs, the Scottsdale Public Library and featured their personal collections up for auction. It was a huge success! 

Russ Jackson and his son Craig / Barrett-Jackson archives 

The news of Barrett and Jackson’s rare collection and subsequent auction quickly spread among collectors and luxury car fans across world-wide. After the first auction, the two collectors were poised and positioned to attract more luxurious, unique and rare vehicles to come across the stage.  

After the death of Russ Jackson in 1993 and retirement of Tom Barrett in 1997, Craig Jackson, Russ’ son, took over the auction, expanding the stages to Palm Beach, Florida, Las Vegas, Nevada and Houston, Texas.  

The Jackson and Barrett families / Barrett-Jackson archives 

It seems that nothing, not even a global pandemic can keep the Barrett-Jackson down. Despite unfavorable predictions, in 2021 the world’s greatest collector car auction sold a record breaking $5.5 million dollar Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake and a 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 for a shattering $2.465 million showing that despite uneasy conditions in the world, the show must go on. 

To date, 1,054 vehicles have been sold in total for a whopping $95 million alongside 1,000 pieces of memorabilia raking in $4.4 million. To add to the legacy, Barrett-Jackson’s charitable giving spills over, and by 2021 the auction has successfully raised $105 million giving back 100% of the proceeds to selected non-profit organizations. All in all, the legendary auction still holds over 95 world-record auction sales in its back pocket. 

The 2022 Barrett-Jackson 

1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL / Barrett-Jackson 

What’s on deck for this year’s auction? What are some of the high-ticket cars that collectors and fans have their eye on? This year some of the top-notch vehicles proposed to sell for the highest value include: 

  • 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL (Lot 1415) 

  • 2015 Porsche 918 Spyder (Lot 1405) 

  • 1967 Ford Mustang Eleanor Tribute Edition (Lot 1377) 

  • 1965 Shelby Cobra 427 Super Snake (Lot 1375) 

  • 1961 Chevrolet Biscayne Fleetmaster 409 (Lot 1291) 

  • 2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition (Lot 1389) 

  • 2017 Ford GT '66 Heritage Edition (Lot 1417) 

  • 1962 Shelby Cobra CSX 2032 'Lance Reventlow Cobra" (Lot 1382) 

  • 1958 Lincoln Continental Custom Convertible "Maybellene" (Lot 1416) 

  • 1967 Chevrolet Yenko Super Camaro 427/450 (Lot 1407) 

The Auction that Gives Back 

Lot #3009 – 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 – First Retail Production. 100% of hammer price to benefit operation Homefront. Will be sold at approximately 8:30 p.m. MST on Saturday, January 29, 2022. 

The glitz and glamor of the cars showcased on stage at the auction doesn’t overshadow the beauty of the charitable giving the auction presents. More than just bidding on cars, the Barrett-Jackson is an established a heart-centered experience where high-ticket vehicles are auctioned off with 100% of the proceeds given back to charity. On the receiving end are multiple charitable organizations highlighted throughout the auction.  

This year the car to watch at the charity auction is located on lot #3009. A gorgeous lime green 2023 Chevy Corvette Z06. Boasting as the first in its retail production, the buzz has already begun over who will be the first to own the already infamous Z06. 100% of the proceeds for this particular auction will benefit Operation Homefront, a military organization dedicated to assisting the women and men serving in the United States Military and easing the transition back into civilian life. Look for the auction to start on Saturday, January 29th at 8:30pm MST.  

“It was wonderful to be back among our friends and family in the collector car community,” said Craig Jackson. “The pandemic challenged us all in different ways, which is why it was great to reconnect and celebrate this passion we all love so much. It’s also why we curated a quality docket that included some of the very best examples of collector cars. With so many auto shows and traditional events canceled over the past year, we were thrilled to provide a stage for the world’s top automakers to showcase their latest vehicles. We also relished the chance to write history with the sale of the most VIN 001 and first production vehicles ever offered at auction, which raised $5.8 million for charity.” 

Ready to kick off the 50th Anniversary  

Kicking off in two short days , the Barrett-Jackson will NOT disappoint with a deck of insanely gorgeous luxury vehicles, famous vintage vehicles from movie sets, stunning vintage vehicles and rare models never before seen on the stage. As far as auctions go, this one is as big and bold as it is rooted deeply in the heart of giving back to the community. 

We’ll see you there! 

1/22/2022 - 1/30/2022
Westworld of Scottsdale
16601 North Pima Road 
Scottsdale, AZ 85260 

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