Mecum Auctions, Hyatt Regency, Monterey, California, August 16-18, 2012
Report and photos by Rick Carey, Auction Editor
This was Mecum’s fourth year at Monterey, an expansion which many considered risky at best and foolish at worst. The Mecum team has shown that it was intelligently conceived and nearly flawlessly executed and the Mecum auction now captures the third highest sale total on the Peninsula.
It takes a lot of hard work to put on a three-day sale with 559 cars, motorcycles and automobilia (‘Road Art’ in Mecum-speak) but Mecum continues to pull it off ever more effectively. The numbers – like the 85.4% increase in the mean transaction value – tell an interesting story.
There were a number of headline consignments, notably the 1972 SCCA Can-Am Championship winning Porsche 917/10 sold for $5,000,000, $5,830,000 with commission and the 71-bike collection of MV Agustas that were auctioned in a single lot but fell short of reserve at $800,000.
The Porsche attracted similar consignments, both Can-Am cars like Don Nichols’ one race, as-new Shadow DN4 and truckloads of Porsches.
The Mecum crew exhibits a bit of flair and fun from time to time, a hint that they really like what they’re doing. The hint in Monterey was a tent full of nothing but red cars. Not ‘red’ in the Italian sense, but red in color including Cord, Porsche and Mercedes-Benz.
The cars reported here are predominantly the higher end and race cars displayed in the main tent and some of the outlying preview tents. We’ll have many more, and more diverse, cars in the second tranche of auction reports that will be added here soon.