As expected from a company that prides itself on offering “everyman classics,” the final event of the year from England’s Classic Car Auctions (CCA) was populated with underappreciated gems from the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s, bringing a strong sense of nostalgia to a crowd that was probably in grade school when most of these vehicles were still on showroom floors.
Certainly one of the more iconic examples from one of international rallying’s most interesting periods, this 1992 Lancia Delta Integrale Evo I was imported from Japan, where it had been maintained in excellent condition. Sold for £29,700 (US $37,506), this is a car destined to continue increasing in value, ticking all the right boxes for a modern classic.
Resting on the podium in a second-place tie for the high sale of the day was a car that caused almost everyone to reminisce about the days when the winning bid would have brought home a bona fide original instead of a mere facsimile. Sold at £57,200 (US $72,234), the 2014 Lamborghini Countach 5000 QV Replica was built on a tubular chassis and powered by a BMW 5.0-liter V-12. Hard to tell from the real deal, the attention to detail was stunning, down to the interior stitching and the trademark scissor doors. With authentic examples trading at 10 times the price, it might be the best way to get front row parking at the valet stand on the cheap.
Selling for the same £57,200 (Us $72,234), but with a much more colorful pedigree, this 1972 Jaguar E-Type Series III started life as an automatic left-hand-drive coupe that was first sold in the United States before making its way back home to the UK in 1990. Clearly, its conversion to manual right-hand-drive OTS spec was a labor of love and not a sound investment, since the conversion expense likely cost twice what the buyer paid for the car here.
The best result of the day, however, had no such stories to tell. Sold in the UK and carefully maintained since, only £59,950 (US $75,707) for a 1979 Porsche 930 Turbo seems a bit of a bargain, especially since it had just received a comprehensive service and retained almost all of its original paperwork.
On the other end of the financial spectrum, and our best buy of the day, was the £3,300 (US $4,167) paid for a 1987 Lotus Excel, which had all sorts of potential in its solid bones and sound condition. Needing a few details to sort out, this is still an attractive looker that will no doubt provide many enjoyable miles down the road.
Proving that almost anything will eventually find its moment in the sun, one of the surprise performers of the day was a 1977 Vauxhall Chevette HS 2.3, which was a mere appliance when Abba and David Soul were dominating the airwaves at BBC Radio 1.
If the thought of a fully restored Chevette sends shivers up your spine, consider that this was the very first example off the production line and was featured prominently in a recent marque history. Although the bid reached an impressive £19,800 (US $25,004), it’s still for sale on the CCA website. But is there another pristine example available in the world at any price? Probably not, so if you really need a Chevette to complete a Vauxhall collection, then this one’s for you.
Living up to its credo, Classic Car Auctions have to be proud of the impressive 91 percent sell-through rate and the £1,623,932 (US $2,050,770 haul for the day’s offerings, showing it is always better to go out with a bang than a whimper -- especially where everyman classics are concerned.
Photos courtesy of Classic Car Auctions.