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A few more asking prices from the "golden years"

Discussion in 'Vintage Ferrari Market' started by bannishg, Sep 9, 2012.

  1. VIZSLA

    VIZSLA Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Good point about the used car values. The high cost of maintence has killed more Ferraris than accidents.

    To paraphrase an old quote about money. Its easy to afford a Ferrari if you don't want anything else.
    Like a family.
    ;)
     
  2. bannishg

    bannishg Formula Junior

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    #202 bannishg, Sep 10, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2013
    Very very true, and though they were certainly cheaper in both the literal and relative senses, the concept of spending that much money on a car didn't exist yet, at least a used one. Even the most expensive of his cars, when new, that Enzo built back in the early days sold for the equivalent of a new "entry level" Ferrari today (like a $200k California vs a $23k 410SA in 1957).

    7 and 8-figure sums are exchanged, seemingly, on a daily basis now, and several limited production supercars have MSRP's well into the 7 figures.

    There was a car collector back in the 50s named John Shakespeare who had a great affinity for Bugattis. A good running Bugatti, per the ads I have, could be purchased for as little as $400 in the middle part of that decade, but were usually in the $1,500 range (such was the case even for the T35's). In July 1956, when he acquired his crown jewel, he paid a sum that was substantial enough for editors of the NY Times to dedicate the headline of the automotive section to (though to be exact, the article was in September that year, and I don't believe it was a Sunday Edition).

    People seemed to have been astounded at the figure paid for the mighty T41 Royale in mint condition, inclusive of shipping from the UK. The exact amount wasn't revealed, but the article mentioned that the sum was paid in Pounds Sterling and was equivalent to "just shy of ten-thousand US dollars" (some sources say 3500PDS, then equal to $9743USD).

    A new paradigm had to take hold in the way people view the automobile in order for people to respect, and still even further to the state where they "worship" certain cars. This is at least to the extent people would pay any price for ownership. Perhaps, several arguments could be made in determining exactly when the shift occurred, and whether it was gradual or abrupt.
     
  3. VIZSLA

    VIZSLA Four Time F1 World Champ
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    #203 VIZSLA, Sep 10, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2013
    Yes, of fishing reel fame.
    When it came time for him to sell off his collection no one but the Schlumpf Brothers were willing to pony up, so despite his dislike of sending the cars off in to the Alsatian cave off they went. This might be a precursor event to the current market.

    BTW the Charles Cayne (?) Royale with the Ludwig Weinberger body ended up in a scrap yard at one point.
     
  4. BIRA

    BIRA Formula Junior

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    #204 BIRA, Sep 10, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2013
    Well earlier in 1950,, Briggs Cunningham bought directly 2 Bugatti Royale from the Bugatti family for 1200dollars for both of them and 2 GE refrigerators if I remember correctly...so inflation was already there...
     
  5. VIZSLA

    VIZSLA Four Time F1 World Champ
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    Perhaps. But I think that Briggs' attitude and his contributions to the hobby were of an entirely different sort than those of the Shlumpfs. They were the personification of the collector as hoarder. Quality vs. quantity if you will.
     
  6. 375+

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    I believe that they were Frigidaires, at the time the Cadillac of refrigerators.
     
  7. bannishg

    bannishg Formula Junior

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    Haha that is correct, sir!

    I actually did research on this transaction about 2 years ago, and here is how it went down:

    Briggs came across the cars while in France for Le Mans in June 1950, where, (funny you mention Cadillacs), his team was using a suped up Cadillac (I forgot how they placed, mind you this was before he Manufactured any of his C-2, C-3 etc. cars). Somehow he obtained word that Ettore's daughter L'ebe (sp?) was looking to sell 2 of the 3 Royales they had stored up in their factory. Ettore had passed away 3 years prior. All cars were running, but had been sitting in storage since the late 30s, so naturally they needed help.

    This was 1950, so the car collecting phenomena barely even existed, but Bugattis, and especially the Royale, had a strong cult following.

    Cunningham made several visits, usually over coffee or dinner, to L'ebe in June and July negotiating the terms. Apparently she was willing to let the cars go as-is at 200,000 FF a piece (keep in mind that from 1949 to 1958, 1 USD = 350 FRF, so this means only US $572 per car!). Amazingly, this was still not the lowest price a Royale had ever been offered/bought. As someone pointed out earlier, Charles Chayne, (an exec at GM I believe?) had acquired one from a junkyard, complete and all intact but rough, at $300. This was 1943 or 44. I think Briggs had the better deal in the end, because Chayne was on record of spending nearly $10k on its restoration and new body in the mid-late 40s.

    Cunningham preferred them to be in mint condition, so he inquired about getting them restored. The final figure consisted of the following:

    L'ebe would sell two Royales, have them rebuilt and restored at the factory and have them shipped to the States by January 1951.

    Briggs fee, that would cover everything mentioned above, was approx. 2 Million FRF ($5,715 USD), and two Frigidaires (which had to be somewhere around $350 to 400 USD each). Basically the entire thing took $6,500 out of his pocket, or $3,250 per car if you prefer. Please keep in mind that this was for TWO Royales, AND their restorations and mechanical overhauls AND shipping to the US, (and shipping was very expensive then!)

    In late 51/early 52, Briggs would sell one of them to Cameron Peck at a price very near what he had paid for the two of them. The Peck car would sell twice in 1986, first at auction for $6.5m and later privately to the Dominos guy for $8.1m. The car Cunningham kept sold at auction in Nov 87 for $9.8m.

    My father was born in May 1950, so I always love to tease him about this historic deal taking place within his lifetime!
     
  8. DWR46

    DWR46 Formula 3
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    Funny we have drifted to Royales, but my good friend, the late Hal Uhlrich, who was Peck's mechanic flew to New York and actually DROVE the Peck Royale to Chicago! Hal probalby had as many miles behind the wheel of a Royale as almost anybody. On the Ferrari front, Hal and his brother Bill, were major players in the early Ferrari world in the Midwest, taking care of most of the Ferrari race cars of this era at their shop. Just amazing stories!
     
  9. bannishg

    bannishg Formula Junior

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    Yes, in fact "Uhlrich" is a name I saw in many ads, specifically 50s and 60s. Will see if I can dig up some good stuff.
     
  10. VIZSLA

    VIZSLA Four Time F1 World Champ
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    #211 VIZSLA, Sep 11, 2013
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    A Cunningham aside.
    Last weekend at the Lime Rock Historics half the Cunnighams extant appeared. Unfortunately Le Monstre wasn't one.
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  11. 375+

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    If we might stray from the thread one more time, there is a story told by the late Jim Ibold, Sr. of Cincinnati that is worth sharing. Jim owned two great Alfa Romeo 8C's for many years, 8C 2300(2311239) and 8C 2900(412016). Jim bought the 2.9 sight unseen from England and had the car shipped to Baltimore in 1953. After clearing customs and preparing the car for use, he started to drive it back to Cincinnati on US 40. Outside of Cumberland, MD he was shocked to encounter a Bugatti Royale(41150) coming the other way. It was the ex-Cunningham/Cameron Peck Berline de Voyage then owned by Dr. Skitarelic of Cumberland. I can't imagine that these two automotive giants ever crossed paths again. Perhaps on the lawn at concours, certainly not on the road.
     
  12. Bobj

    Bobj Formula Junior

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    Great thread!

    To bring it back to ferrari, does anyone have an original ferrari price list for the 1950/60's?
     
  13. bannishg

    bannishg Formula Junior

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    #214 bannishg, Sep 12, 2013
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    I'm fairly certain I have quite a number of new Ferraris being offered in the 60s and late 50s, but I don't believe I have a price list (maybe from the 60s, I'll look). I doubt there would be such a thing prior to 1957, because just about all cars were special orders or tailored for competition, so the prices would be inconsistent, even within individual examples of the same model. The touring cars of the early - mid 50s would begin around $8500 US, but could run you well into the twenties. The 1958 TDF and 250TR were both around $12k new, and were cheaper than the PF coupe by a few hundred dollars. The 250GTE in 62 began around $10,900 but was sometimes offered at a markdown price that was below $10k.
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  14. tongascrew

    tongascrew F1 Rookie

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    I don't think this is the original body work and may not even be the original chassis.If I am correct there was a Scaglietti rebody done in 1954, another rebody done in 197[?] by Fantuzzi and a replica/reproduction built by [?] in 1970. The original Touring body had no hood scoop, The Scaglietti body was typical mid 1950s Scaglietti as seen on this car in the 1957 Giro Sicilia #339. The car shown in this ad has a hood scoop,the front end cowling is all wrong and the windshield looks like it could have come from some 1950s British sports car. Comments anyone? tongascrew
     
  15. kare

    kare F1 Rookie
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    Cupellini's version of 0034M was a complete fake. Good news is the car does not exist anymore.
     
  16. tongascrew

    tongascrew F1 Rookie

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    Hi thanks for the info. So this is the Fantuzzi car. Seems surprising they would build such a creature. Did Cupellini actually own the real 0034?. tongascrew
     
  17. kare

    kare F1 Rookie
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    I don't know who built the body, real 0034M was sold to Spain and copies of paperwork were used to fake the identity on a second car in Italy, it seems.
     
  18. sam231

    sam231 Formula Junior
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    Greg,

    Thanks so much for sharing. A real history lesson and very intersting. The only sad part is that in the late 60's I was focusing more attention on my number in the draft than on vintage car prices. For a few bucks more than the price I paid a friend to buy his '66 Fitch Sprint Corvair I could have purchased a nice Ferrari coupe.....woulda, coulda, shoulda....though the Fitch was a great car.

    Cheers,

    Sam
     
  19. tongascrew

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    An early effort by the Dubbini bros.?? Even something like this does add something to the provenance. Thanks tongascrew
     
  20. Bobj

    Bobj Formula Junior

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    #224 Bobj, Sep 20, 2013
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  21. bannishg

    bannishg Formula Junior

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    PF Cabrio II was very close in price to the SWB California, in the $12,500 USD region. I've read somewhere that the 250TR's were being sold new to Enzo's clients for around $12,000. This was the same cost, roughly at least, as the Tour de France. The 375 America was also more expensive than it's racer sibling, 375MM. (375 America was in the low 20s and 375MM was mid-upper teens). The cost of labor in the custom coachwork of the 50's GT cars meant that their factory MSRP's were about the same or even higher on average than the more prolific GT cars of the 60s.
     

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