World-Record Bizzarrini just one of the winners at Artcurial’s Rétromobile sale

A home advantage again played into the collective hands of Artcurial during the second half of its Rétromobile 2015 sale, with no fewer than eight new World Records set on Friday evening to add to the two posted earlier…

Following on from the stunning results in the earlier sale of the Baillon Collection was never going to be easy, with all but one of the ‘forgotten’ cars going beyond their high estimates – many stratospherically so. But despite a few hiccups (and not of the champagne-induced type), the French auction house still managed to chart eight new auction records, including those for a Ferrari Testarossa (€196,700 including premium), a Porsche 356 A Speedster (€298,000) and a 1973 De Tomaso Pantera GTS (€133,500). One highlight result saw a stunning orange 1968 Bizzarrini 5300 GT Strada pip the million-euro mark (€1.2m), doubling its mid-estimate figure. However, a few important lots failed to find buyers, including a few of the pre-War Bugattis and Mercedes, and a 300 SL ‘Gullwing’. Bidding for the latter stalled short of its reserve and its €1.1m - €1.2m estimate, despite a matching-numbers engine and the desirable Rudge knock-off wheels. We’re sure the Artcurial collective will be attempting to make the most of Rétromobile’s captive audience to hammer out a few more deals in the post-auction sales window.

Other notable results included the €441,000 paid for a Ferrari 599 GTO – another World Record, and perhaps a sign that interest in modern, limited-production Ferraris could swell, as one of our experts suggested it might at the turn of the year. Or could it just be the result of hyped-up bidders caught up in the Gallic theatre of three auctioneers with boundless energy, and no aversion to telling the bustling audience to ‘shhhh’?

Photos: Rémi Dargegen for Classic Driver © 2015