John Cena GT
It must be sad to hear an auction house refer to a Ford GT as the “infamous” John Cena GT. Sigh. But tonight in Monterey, California the Russo and Steele Car Auction sold the John Cena GT. The 2017 Ford GT is touted as being the first “unencumbered” sale of the Ford GT.
History of the GT
The 2017 model of the Ford GT is actually the third version of the Ford supercar. The original model was called the Ford GT40 and was produced from 1964-1969 strictly for racing Ford dusted off the design and cranked out the second version from 2005-06 to honor their 100th anniversary. Interestingly in a quirk, Ford had never registered the original trademark and so had to call the second iteration the Ford GT.
When Ford announced the latest version of the GT they limited the production to only 1,000 cars and they required potential buyers to apply for the right to buy the car. The Ford folks vetted the applicants and required them to agree not to sale the car for two years. Since they came out, the GT’s have shown up at various events like this yellow GT. Exactly as Ford intended.
John Cena GT
Enter the pro wrestler John Cena who applied and was approved to buy a Liquid Blue GT. He paid $463,376.50 for the car on September 23, 2017 and promptly sold it to a California reseller a month later. Ford threw down the lawsuits suing both the dealership and John Cena. Cena ultimately settled with Ford by agreeing to pay an undisclosed amount to an undisclosed charity through Ford. He also encouraged all other owners to honor their agreement not to re-sell the cars.
John Cena GT Chapter Two
The John Cena GT was purchased by a California farmer (I’m not making this up). He cranked up the odometer to 625 miles before deciding his back was not conducive to the GT supercar. So now Russo and Steele had the chance to auction this car. Ironically the same dealership that Cena sold the GT to is representing the elderly farmer in this auction transaction!
John Cena GT at Monterey
The car auctions held during the week before the Pebble Beach Concours extravaganza mark the end of the “season”. Sure there will be more auctions for the balance of the year, but this week of auctions represents the other bookend to the start up of the classic car season that kicks off in January in Arizona. Russo and Steele is a big player in this arena and brought out plenty of potential bidders.
John Cena GT Sells
After some spirited bellowing by the auctioneers, the John Cena GT sold with a hammered price of $1,400,000 plus commission. Perhaps with that price it will lose the tag of being “infamous”?
Photos courtesy of Russo and Steele
Records are meant to be broken and in the world of classic cars and tons of money, the records fall quickly. For a spell this 1936 Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic was thought to be the most expensive car. It is owned by Rob Walton (yes of the Wal-Mart Walton’s) and allegedly sold for $40 million dollars in 2010.
We had the chance to see it up close and in person at a local Concours show and it certainly was a classic. But like we say, records fall fast around classic cars. It had the reputation as being the most expensive car ever sold. It is a ‘reported” price as it was a private sale and not subject to any public certification or event. A co-owner is listed as Peter Mullin who runs the Mullin Automotive Museum. It is a featured car at the museum when not in shows.
1963 Ferrari 250 GTO
Earlier this year that record for most expensive car was shattered, again “reportedly”, when a 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO was sold for $70 million in a private sale. It was bought by David McNeal who founded WeatherTech- the rubber mat company. This Ferrari has a great racing pedigree, including coming in fourth at 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1963 and won the Tour de France course in 1964.
1962 Ferrari 250 GTO
Next up? Potentially this red 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO . It is offered up at the Monterrey Auction by RM Sotheby’s with an estimated price tag of between $60-45million, which is quite a range. Now auction houses are now for hyperbole but they probably have nailed the low end for this Ferrari.
Only 36 GTO’s were built, so this becomes a pretty exclusive car. It also has a good racing pedigree and was one of four upgraded by Scaglietti with the Series II coachwork, which features a wider aerodynamic body. the new bodywork lowered the car, crafted a better balanced car and allowed for better handling on the road courses. Interestingly the original engine was removed from the car and preserved with a different 250 GT block presently in the car. So an owner could drive the red racer and still have the original engine for history and originality.
Will it exceed $60 Million? Hard to say but the scarcity of the Ferrari’s suggest that some company stock might be sold off to allow for a new car in somebody’s stable.
Some photos courtesy of RM Sotheby’s
If you are a certain age, you’ll remember the TV hit- The Munsters. This comedy featured some famous bits and even some neater cars, like the Drag-U-La. It seems strange that the producers would allow purpose built cars that would last for only a few episodes. But we’re glad they did.
The story line was that Grandpa had to build a dragster to race and win back Herman’s “The Munster Koach”. So Hollywood had George Barris produce the car/casket vehicle. While Barris has been known for claiming credit for builds that are barely linked to his firm, this one was designed by Tom Daniel under his auspices. Richard Korkes took on the build and used an actual coffin for the “body”.
The original car moved among sellers after the series and a movie ended. At one point it was owned by Planet Hollywood. The Volo Car Museum had it for a while before flipping it. By then it had a 302 engine and an automatic transmission.
So why are we talking about a custom car from the 60’s? Because auction house Russo and Steele has a recreation of the Drag-U-La on their docket for this weekend. We had a chance to part the crowds at a recent Cars and Coffee and check it out on the flat bed tow truck.
This version has the reliable 350 ci engine and a two speed PowerGlide automatic transmission. With such little weight, only functional rear brakes were installed. Just like the original, the exhaust pipes sweep up to look like a church’s organ pipes. The seller claims plenty of “vintage” car parts but also indicates the have “custom made vintage air cleaner”.
This front engine coffin will certainly be a crowd pleaser when you pull up, but the single seat does limit the ability to hop onto the HOV lanes. Hopefully this is a car you would “die for?”
Gas Monkey Garage, Where Are You?
At the January, 2018 Barrett-Jackson Car Auction held in Scottsdale, AZ there are over 1700 cars and trucks ready to sell. But the venerable Gas Monkey Garage, with Richard Rawlings and Dennis “I need my name on every shirt I wear” Collins are nearly invisible.
Gas Monkey Garage
As mentioned previously the most recognizable Gas Monkey Garage selling vehicle is the 1956 Nomad that Rawlings did for Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Mountain Dew. It has drawn some interest under the tent and it will be interesting to see what it brings.
Gas Monkey Garage’s GT350
As for Gas Monkey Garage, there is a nearly new 2016 Shelby GT350 Mustang that was on the Fast N’ Loud series on the Discovery channel. Rawlings drove it onto the track when he was building a car for Kurt Busch. From the seller’s description it indicates the car “was personally owned by Richard Rawlings of gas Monkey Garage”. So it is anybody’s guess if the seller is actually Richard Rawlings.
For the car itself, it has less than 200 miles on the Mustang. It is black inside and out along with a vivid red racing stripe. Not sure why the seller hasn’t taken care of a recall for an engine oil cooler tube assembly replacement yet. After all it wasn’t on the road that much.
The Shelby Mustang is the 5.2 V8 engine with the six speed manual transmission. It sells on Friday (the seller couldn’t even get a Saturday docket number?) So if you were expecting a fleet of Gas Monkey Garage cars at the auction his week, you might be disappointed.
So do you think the GT350 will sell for above retail? After all it is nearly new and hardly abused?
Gas Monkey Garage at Barrett-Jackson Car Auction
At this week’s Barrett-Jackson Car Auction, the presence of Gas Monkey Garage is sparse. A 56 Nomad done for Mountain Dew and Dale Earnhardt Jr. in a can’t miss green and silver color scheme is the most obvious car linked to the Gas Monkey Garage crew.
Gas Monkey Garage
For a spell the bar outside the auction stage was a Gas Monkey Garage theme, but that has dropped out. I suspect that Richard Rawlings might show up since he’s selling his 2016 Shelby Mustang GT350R with only a scant 200 miles clicked on the odometer. But who knows for sure? That Mustang is slated to sell on Friday.
Gas Monkey Garage Past Offerings
We’ve kept a close eye on Gas Monkey garage’s offerings even before the series became a monster hit. Remember this hot rod from the early years?
As for the Nomad, who wouldn’t remember that bright green custom wagon? The current owner has a neat set of sunshades on the rear windows. The wagon has a 350 CI Chevy ZZ4 crate motor, TH350 automatic transmission, air conditioning and all the trick goodies. This video shows the wagon in action.
Gas Monkey Garage Season 4 Fast N’ Loud
Gas Monkey Garage built the car in 2013 during their fourth season on Discovery and of course they had an impossible deadline to beat. This car was used as a promotion for Mountain Dew, one of Earnhardt’s sponsors and hence the color on the 56 Nomad. Of course fans of Richard Rawlings know that his favorite color is green. Both for cars and for money.
The car had previously been offered for sale on eBay at $78,500 nearly four years ago. It also was offered on the internet at $69,500. So it will be interesting to see what the car fetches on prime time Saturday. Any guesses?
We recently wrote on another site about the revival of the 1965 Shelby Mustang GT350R. At next week’s Barrett-Jackson Car Auction, a 1966 Shelby GT350 is being offered for sale with a reserve. Few cars at the Barrett-Jackson auction come with reserves, but this one does. the car will cross the stage on Saturday, January 20, 2018 in Scottsdale, AZ. That is prime time for selling car during the week of auctions in Arizona.
With a reserve car, the seller has a predetermined price that he wants to get and otherwise it won’t sell. Now that price is unknown to the potential buyers normally, so if the reserve is met, the bidders know for sure the car will sell and often more bidders will enter the auction. And if the price, doesn’t reach to the reserve? You can bet the house representatives will get with the seller trying to get him to lower the reserve and make a deal (and of course get the house the commission).
What makes this special is it was Carroll Shelby’s first 66 Mustang and was used as a prototype. Of course it came with a 289 and the Borg Warner T-10 four speed. But it also bears some unique features. It comes with a vinyl roof that was considered and then discarded as a feature. Good call Carroll. It came from the factory with a ton of options including the “Pony” upholstery. Restored in 2011 and has been shown at Pebble Beach.
The pedigree of this Mustang is above reproach and it will be interesting to see how the bidding goes on this Wimbledon White “K” code two door pony. After all you can only have one #1 serial number and prototype in the year. So what would you bid for the car? A million plus? Will it reach reserve? I’d be willing to bet it will.
FAST at Barrett-Jackson Car Auction
At the Barrett-Jackson Car Auction, FAST usually 2018 at all of Craig Jackson’s car auctions, FAST will have a totally different and potentially lifesaving meaning.
For the first time Barrett-Jackson will focus for the whole year on heart disease as a public service message with the American Heart Association. The auctions have always been known for their charity car sales which now approaches almost $100 million in donations. But for 2018 Craig Jackson explained that they will be sending out a heart safe message to their participants.
FAST also stands for the warning signs of a heart attack.
F Facial drooping
A Arm weakness
S Speech slurred
T Time to call 9-1-1
1988 Corvette Charity Car
As part of the year-long notification, Jackson had his personal Bugatti Veyron wrapped in red and silver with the #DRIVEN HEARTS hast tag splashed across the sides. Plus at next week’s Scottsdale, AZ auction he will be donating the sale of his 1988 Chevrolet Corvette to help fight heart disease. Ironically this sports car had been given him by long time auction consignor and car dealer, Dave Ressler. Ressler recently died from heart disease so this re-gifting is so suiting.
In addition Barrett-Jackson is sponsoring a special Arizona license plate theme, with $17 of the state yearly fee going to the American Heart Association. So there are several ways that Barrett-Jackson will help benefit the hearts of car fans!
Silver Auction has been a presence in the Phoenix, AZ region for years. They typically hold three auctions a year at the Fort McDowell Casino and Hotel. They run a low key affair and have friendly staffing. The cars they consign are nice, vary from current models to classics and generally are more affordable than other high end sites. So the cars might have some blemishes or flaws but are still solid pieces of steel.
We have monitored the auctions for years and spotlighted some of their offerings.
Selected Silver Auction Coverage
Green Day’s Impala
Green Day’s Ford Panel Truck
Silver Auction Process
If a car is offered at auction on reserve and doesn’t sell, the auctioneers typically hint at what the bid price might need to be to buy the car. Frequently the deals are made after the car rolls off the auction block.
If the bidding for a car meets the reserve the auctioneers are quick to announce the fact, a multicolor “disco” light turns on and the crowd gets energized knowing the car will sell.
Silver Auction Trading Hands
Now Mitch Silver has sold off the Arizona portion of his auctions to Emmett Rice. Rice is a car dealer from Amarillo, Texas, owning Vintage Autohaus & Imports. Rice has staged his own auctions there and is ready to take on the Arizona scene. Joining him will be Andy Stone, who formerly worked at Leake Auctions, and Jason Rose from the Barrett-Jackson powerhouse.
Next Silver Auction
Their first auction will fire up after Thanksgiving on November 24-26, 2017. Here’s hoping they continue the success that Mitch Silver struck in Arizona.
While car manufacturers have been releasing new models with turbochargers as power adders, they have actually been around for quite awhile. Recently turbos were added to the Ford Focus and Fiesta engines, and even the trucking F-150. Turbos gain their power by using the exhaust gases to spin a turbine to help compress the incoming air to the engine. The denser the air, the more power the engine can make.
With the right engine, today’s shade tree mechanic could add their own turbocharger to easily increase the power. Completely spec’d kits are available, or you could piece out the individual parts.
Grand National Turbos
Buicks made a case for the turbos with their 1984 Regal Grand National and gained quite a following, until they stopped production in 1987. Another early innovator was the Corvair, that offered a turbo in 1962 to help polish their “sporty” image. The turbo charged Spyder engine made 150 horses as an option for the Corvair Monza coupes and convertibles.
But Oldsmobile rushed out their Jetfire to be the first turbocharged engine offering to the American motoring public in 1962. The Jetfire was a spin off on the F-85 Oldsmobile hardtop. It came with a 215 CI V-8 engine with a Garrett turbocharger making 215 horses (one horsepower per cubic inch of displacement). To avoid deadly detonation, the owners had to blend in a water and methanol mixture of “Rocket Fluid”. The other performance engine from Olds, without the turbo, was the same 215 CI engine but with just a four barrel carburetor. it could only offer up 185 horsepower.
A 1962 Oldsmobile Jetfire was recently offered on eBay and the red exterior mimicked the sales brochures from the day. The owner indicated it is a ground up restoration but with a few items still needing a look at. The owner installed a new turbocharger and added in air conditioning for comfort.
So when your neighbor pops the hood on his Ford Fiesta ST and brags about his beastly turbo on his three cylinder engine, you can tell him that turbos are old school too.
Alumatub, Boyd Coddington’s third all aluminum build sells at the Barrett-Jackson auction this week. This was the third in a series of aluminum bodied customs that Coddington produced. The top can come off to allow for a roadster feel.
This one is powered by a Chevy small block 350 and sends power to the back through a Chevrolet TH350 transmission with a quick change rear end. The body work was done by famed master Marcel‘s Custom Metal and is hard to believe this was hand formed and not stamped out on a press. Our friends at Hot Rod sure loved it.
This hand crafted Boyd Coddington build was showcased on his TV show, “American Hot Rod” TV series which can still be seen on the Discovery Channel. After Coddington’s untimely death, it was thought that his builds would increase in value as his output was now finalized.
Alumatub first sold at Barrett-Jackson in 2005 to Ron Pratte with a listed price, including commissions, of $170,500. He sold it ten years later for $187,000 in 2015. The current owner is selling this year and it’ll be interesting to see what it sells for.