10 August 2009

Monterey Week Begins

The most action packed six days in the collector car world begins this week with the Quail Rally and the Carmel-By-The-Sea Concours On The Avenue leading things off. Other events include The Quail , A Motorsports Gathering, Pebble Beach Retro Auto, the Concours d’ Le Mons (celebrating the truly awful of the automotive world), two Italian car shows (Concorso Italiano and La Dolce Vita), a motorcycle auction, The Rolex Monterey Historic Races and, of course, the Pebble Beach Concours with featured marques Bentley and Bugatti.

The economy has focused even greater attention on the six automobile auctions that will take place throughout the week ending with Gooding and Company’s sale on Sunday. Just a few days away from the first sale (RM on Thursday night), there remain two schools of thought as to how things will shake down. The more cautious predict that we will see more of what we've recently seen: solid, though unspectacular, prices for excellent examples of cars with conservative presale estimates and realistic reserves.

The more optimistic believe that some solid spring auction results – coupled with more signs the economy will rebound in 2010 and the Dow’s July resurgence – will coax people off the sidelines, and that increased demand will result in higher than expected prices. Both sides seem to agree, however, that the market has changed permanently in one respect. The irrational exuberance of 2007 and before is over, and the gap between great cars and questionable examples will continue to grow. Hagerty will be following all of the events and we’ll have a full wrap-up in the August Hagerty Plus e-Newsletter following the sale.

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