Bargains from Amelia Island Auctions 2019

By Andrew Newton ( Hagerty )


With vehicles selling for an average price of R3,7 Million SA Rand at the 2019 Amelia Island auctions, it wasn’t easy for budget-minded mortals to find a deal. Yes, as always, the pockets run deep at Amelia. However, at any auction it’s inevitable that a few cars will slip through the cracks and into the hands of a savvy collector.

Few of these cars would be considered cheap to the majority of us, but they sold well under their average value.

1966 Mercedes-Benz 230SL


Sold for R504000 SA Rand (Bonhams)

Values for W113 “Pagoda” (1963–71) SLs peaked in 2016 with the best cars hitting six figures, but they’ve dipped to more realistic levels since then. Even so, the price for this 230 surprised us. The car is pretty rough around the edges and in #3 (Good) condition, but it’s a desirable Euro-market car in attractive colors and it has the rare four-speed, which ordinarily should carry a 10-percent premium. It sold for barely more than project car money.

1972 Jaguar E-Type SIII Coupe


Sold for R436000 SA Rand (Bonhams)

A Series III (1971–75) E-Type Coupe is one of the cheapest tickets to E-Type ownership, and the optional three-speed automatic normally carries a further 15-percent discount to its value. But that doesn’t explain the rock-bottom price for this otherwise well kept, mostly original Fawn over Biscuit leather XKE. Like the Mercedes 230SL from earlier in the Bonhams sale, it’s not perfect (we rated it in #2- condition), but it’s a lot better than the project car price it brought.

1974 BMW 2002 Turbo


Sold for R1.7 million SA Rand (Gooding & Company)

In the past two years, there have been five 2002 Turbos sell for at least R2,1 million SA Rand with one selling for R2.9 million SA Rand at this auction last year. BMW values in general are on the rise, and a top-tier, historically significant model like the 2002 Turbo has good long-term potential for growth. This car, though, went against the grain. Offered at no reserve early on in Gooding & Company’s sale, it is a lot better than its price would suggest. A well-restored car that we rated in #2 (Excellent) condition, it could have conceivably brought another R600 00 thousand SA Rand without being considered expensive.

1962 Lancia Flaminia


Sold for R336000 SA Rand (Bonhams)

A V-6 engine, rear-wheel drive (many Lancias moved to front-drive in later years), and Pininfarina bodywork make the Flaminia a nifty little car, even in fairly rough condition like the one that sold at Amelia. All original, other than a tired repaint, it is in #3 (Good) condition, but if you’re into the patina look it’s nicely mellowed. Plus it’s not missing any trim or other pieces, and the black over red really does the car justice. The car will likely need work (like most Lancias do), but at 31-percent below its average value of R450000 SA Rand the new owner has plenty of money left over to do it.

1956 Mercedes-Benz 300SL


Sold for R14.9 million SA Rand (Russo and Steele)

It feels a little weird to call out Russo and Steele’s most expensive car as the sale’s biggest bargain, but a really good Gullwing for less than R15.0 million SA Rand is a sweet deal. And this is a really good Gullwing. The buyer, who didn’t even look at the car prior to the sale and had no intention of buying it. After seeing the bids stall at R12.0 million SA Rand and with a little liquid courage, he couldn’t walk away from it. Two Mercedes experts looked at the car later and told him, “You stole it.” In very rare circumstances, a little impulsiveness pays off.