Wheels of Fortune?

We often talk about the silly season in F1 when it comes to driver transfers; notably static of late, not least thanks to McLaren's long running duo signing yet again. But when it comes to cars, silly money is taking on a new meaning.

At the Bonham's and Brooks Historic Auction at Gstaad, Switzerland, on December 19th, the expectation is that a Ferrari 250 GTO will be sold for $10m, £7m.
Let's be clear, these cars are special, this car very much so. It's pedigree includes coming 2nd at the 73 Le Mans and is one of only 39 made. Chassis number 4293 GTI was built in 1963 but it was 10 years later that the 3 litre Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta Competizione, to give it its full title, not only placed first in the GT category, but incredibly placed 2nd overall.
At that time of course, Enzo Ferrari rated GT racing higher than anything F1 could offer an probably rightly so in those days and the GTO was always one of his favourite cars.

All that notwithstanding, it seems hard to justify such a price. Compare that to a 275 GTB also in the same sale, which is expected to fetch £100,000.
A far cry back to the days when at the end of the 60's GTO's were actually fetching less than their original £6000 asking price. It is rumoured, though not confirmed that, at that time, a certain gentleman bought 2 of these beasts. Although he still retains one, he sold the other for £10.5m in 1990, not a bad return on your investment.

Classic cars have been on a roller coaster for some time now, Ferraris and other marques as well. After the 60's lull, they rose steadily during the 70's and 80's until recession started to bite in the late 80's / early 90's, resulting in a meagre £3m asking price for a GTO.
It does seem though that now, cars are on the increase again, so it may be worth dusting down that restoration job in the garage and checking its condition.
E type Jaguars, for example, followed the same curve as Ferraris for a while (Though not so stratospherically!) This resulted in prices around £60,000 in 1990. Recently, Bonham's had a similar model up for sale at between £24,000 - £26,000.

Go a little further down the scale and we find the humble MGB roadster, a common enough car in the 70's, which hit £15,000 in the boom and are now back at around £10,000.

So where next? Well if the Gstaad sale seems a little out of our each, that's as may be, but what it may do is point the way of the direction of the classic car market. All the signs are that the direction is back on the up.