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Desmond On... The Market & Auctions - Summer 2019

Posted in Insights 5 years ago


Desmond on the Market:

Although the European market is clearly down compared to 24 months ago, I have noticed an upturn in sales enquiries in the past few weeks and the service side of our businesses are as busy as ever. This was backed up by general positivity from clients and dealers at the London Concours last week; there’s a sense that market activity is certainly increasing as we head into the Summer. The US market appears to have remained strong and insulated from the political uncertainly that is affecting European buyers.

However, in my opinion it still remains the perfect opportunity to buy in the current environment; although any form of investment strategy needs to shift from a short-term view to a much more longer-term approach. I personally feel that all the 6-Cylinder and V8 Astons from the late 50s-80s represent value in the market, with exceptional examples of course still being the most sought after.

Desmond on Auctions:

Over the past weeks there have been a few interesting auctions, most notably Bonhams’ Aston Martin Sale and the RM Villa Erba Sale. The Bonhams auction was certainly a mixed sale, however this was countered by a few selected highlight results. The DB5 result was a classic example of ‘auction fever’ as there are superior cars available on the retail market at less money; however, it was certainly a good result for the market. It was a similar story with the RM Sale, with another stand out result being the Short-Chassis Volante. As with the DB5, there are higher quality cars available on the market, but again the price realised can only help these examples.

It is always important to remember that the auction houses are not primarily concerned with quality, as their main objective is to sell cars, which is understandable. However, when analysing auction results, these are not necessarily a true reflection of retail values in the market!

Looking forward, it will be interesting to attend the ‘Evening with Aston Martin’ that will kick off RM’s Monterey sales in August. It feels like RM are trying to emulate the feel of the previous Works Sales held at the factory but taking the sale to a larger and currently more buoyant market. I just hope that the quality of the cars being offered can match the quality of the marketing and event. Regardless, it is certainly good for the brand to be the centre of attention at the start of the largest event in the classic automotive calendar.