Collector Car Auctions Rekindle Memories

by Don Elliott on May 24, 2012

Baby boomers are possibly the last generation to have a relationship with the cars of their youth. Many of us remember with fondness our first car, or the car we drove to the senior prom, or the car we took to the drive-in where we got to “second base” for the first time.

Was it the generation or was it the cars? Take a trip to a collector car auction and you will soon realize that it was the cars. There is a debate about when cars lost their nostalgic flare, but most would agree that somewhere in the 1970’s, cars in general became a commodity. As a result, an industry exists to recycle the remaining rolling works of art, shining examples of used car value.

There are a limited number of these cars that we call collectible. They’re not making anymore ’57 Chevy’s, ’64 Mustangs or ’70 Super Bees. Woodys, Vettes and Cudas are parked in fancy garages, only to come out on bright summer days, for car shows, and at collector car auctions.

Several auto auction companies specialize in collector cars. It is a big business. Live TV broadcasts, VIP accommodations, meticulous planning and big money make collector car auctions an entertainment event worth watching even if you’re not a bidder.

Major auto auction houses specializing in collector cars include:

  • Barrett-Jackson Auction Company, “The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions”, is based in Scottsdale, Arizona. www.barret-jackson.com. 480-663-6255.
  • Mecum Auctions, “Collector Cars, Motorcycles, Boats and Memorabilia” is based in Walworth, Wisconsin. www.mecum.com. 262-275-5050.
  • Russo and Steele Auctions, “For Enthusiasts-By Enthusiasts, It’s Not Just A Tagline-It’s A Lifestyle”, is based in Phoenix, Arizona. www.russoandsteele.com. 602-252-2697.
  • RM Auctions, “Offering The World’s Finest Motor Cars”, is based in Blenheim, Ontario, Canada. www.rmauctions.com. 519-352-4575.

Each of these companies holds event sales at locations across North America and Europe. Buyers and sellers of collectable cars and trucks spare no expense to find the right car when it is offered up for sale at one of these auto auctions. Prices often run well into six figures, many times over what the cars cost when they were brand new.

Got a little extra money? Maybe it is time to put your hand up at a collector car auction. Own a car without seat belts and airbags, but full of memories for those of us who remember when owning the right car was a life-changing event.

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