Monday’s RM Sotheby’s sale brought with it both protest and price drops
On Monday in London, RM Sotheby’s conducted their annual auction in Battersea Park. It featured a highlight of a 1958 Ferrari 250 TDF that eventually sold for a hammer price of £4.25 million (against an estimate of £4.5 million to £5.5 million) but what was most notable was that many lots simply failed to sell or went at prices on or below their lower guides.
At the sale in 2014, a 1984 Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 shot through the price ceiling and sold for £140,000 (on a guide of £60,000 to £95,000) but this time, the story was very different. A nigh on identical car (guided at a punchy £120,000 to £150,000) passed after bidding peaked at £90,000.
The 1959 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud I – featured on these pages previously – owned by the Bond franchise set designer Sir Ken Adam performed reasonably and went for £195,000 (guide £175,000 to £200,000) but a 1964 Maserati Mistral 3.7 Spyder once owned by Diana Dors scraped through at £5,000 under its £475,000 lower guide at £470,000.
Outside the auction, there was another kind of activity as a large group of protestors from a group named the United Voices of the World Union had gathered to highlight the plight of two dismissed Sotheby’s cleaning workers. They made a lot of noise but didn’t seem to drum up much support and thus, along with flatlining prices, all in all, we can only report that the evening was a bit of a cleanout for all concerned.
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