Barrett-Jackson 2017 Featured the Finest in Autos, Memorabilia and Distinctive Vendors
Past, Present and Future of Autos Represented at Famous Auction
Story by Lynette Carrington, Photos by David Carrington
This year’s Barrett-Jackson presented a variety of experiences for avid car collectors, and for those who just came to look, or shop at the wide variety of vendors. The event also boasted the inclusion of rodeo and polo activities that provided entertainment for everyone in attendance. As always, the cars are the stars of the show. Every car in the annual Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale is special in its own regard, or it wouldn’t be there. But, here were some of the more high profile highlights.
High Profile Auction Highlights
One of the highest profile autos included Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and four-time Grammy winner Steven Tyler’s Hennessey Venom GT Spyder. All of the proceeds from the $800,000 winning auction price went to benefit Janie’s Fund, a nonprofit founded by Steven Tyler that assists vulnerable girls in the U.S. who have been the victims of trauma and neglect. To make the auction even more exciting, Tyler personally included a week’s stay at his Maui home, and threw in a guitar autographed by every member of Aerosmith (guitar donated by DuPont Registry.).
Another hotly anticipated auction was Justin Bieber’s 2011 Ferrari 458 Italia. Bieber surprised the crowd by showing up in person to be in attendance during the auction. Like Tyler, Bieber threw in a few extras for the winning bidder– concert tickets and a backstage pass. The final auction for the Ferrari was $343,500, setting a new world record auction.
On the same day as Bieber’s auction, the crowd was treated to another surprise with the appearance of actor and Hollywood legend, Burt Reynolds. Reynolds drove a 1978 Pontiac Firebird Custom Coupe up onto the auction block to the triumphant cheers of the crowd, who undoubtedly remember Reynolds’ film escapades in the “Smokey and the Bandit” series of films. The Pontiac sold for $275,000. Other stars that hopped aboard to help with car auctions were Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Floyd Mayweather. This is why it always pays to go to Barrett-Jackson. There is non-stop auction action, high-profile stars, fantastic vendors, great food, up-close-and-personal experiences with a variety of cars and all the excitement that happens on the auction block.
One final stand-out car was the 1956 Austin Princess that once belonged to John Lennon and was used during the filming of “Imagine.” After filming, Lennon had the vehicle customized for his family. In 2008, the vehicle was donated to the Austin Rock & Roll Car Museum, and finally came up for auction at Barrett-Jackson, where it sold for $159,500. What will the new owner do with this vehicle? We can only imagine!
Another fun auction was for the 1963 Volkswagen Beetle that was used in the film, “Herbie Goes Bananas,” that included a copy of the title from 1972 showing Walt Disney Productions as the owner. Many of the Herbie cars were only used for close-up or certain shots and did not drive, but this one did! The final hammer on the auction for this little iconic Bug was $126,500.
Looking Backward/Moving Forward… And it’s Electric!
One of the things that is always compelling about Barrett-Jackson is seeing such a wide variety of cars. Vehicles that have perhaps been in storage, vehicles that have been painstakingly restored, or those that have served their owners well and are looking for adventures with a new owner find their match at Barrett Jackson.
There was another marked difference this year and it’s a trend that we hope to see continue! Electric vehicles had more prominence this year. Tesla had a presence with their new Model X, an all-electric vehicle that boasts about 300 miles of range before needing a recharge. People’s perceptions of electric vehicles are changing as a result of Tesla. Believe it or not, the Model X is the fastest sports utility vehicle in history, featuring all-wheel drive, space for up to seven passengers and falcon wing doors. Whether you want to haul cargo, or haul toosh, this sexy car is up for the task! The Model X also has towing capacity and the beautiful white vehicle was hitched up and brought along a mid-size Airstream trailer that opened up to reveal all the paint color and interior options offered by Tesla. Although test drives were not available during Barrett-Jackson, curious car enthusiasts should really get out to Scottsdale Fashion Square, visit the Tesla store and have the “Tesla experience.” Oh, and this car has self-driving capabilities, and it’s wild to experience in person!
Chevy Bolt also threw its hat into the Barrett-Jackson ring this year. The vehicle was on the floor to experience in-person, and test drives were available, too. The four-door vehicle is quite spacious inside and is close in size to its category competitor, the Ford Focus all-electric vehicle. Where the Chevy Bolt pulls away from its price point competitors is in its range, which is 238 miles. A test drive of the Bolt proved that the car is pretty zippy, fun to drive and flexible as a commuter or family vehicle. Boasting a price tag of around $30,000, it’s a relatively inexpensive way to get in on the electric car revolution. It’s great to see that Barrett-Jackson is embracing the latest wave of automobiles while featuring the finest in vintage and internal combustion engine vehicles, too.
How much money do you pay in gas each month? We happen to have two all-electric cars in our household and the average cost to charge each one with electricity is approximately $ .99 per day. Yes, you read that correctly! Electric cars are coming into the mainstream auto market and we’re hopeful that Barrett-Jackson will continue to include them at its annual events.
About the Barrett-Jackson Auction Company Established in 1971 and headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, Barrett-Jackson, The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions®, is the leader in collector car and automotive lifestyle events, which include authentic automobilia auctions. The company produces auctions in Scottsdale, Arizona; Palm Beach, Florida; at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut, and Las Vegas, Nevada. With broadcast partners Velocity and Discovery Channel, Barrett-Jackson will feature extensive live television coverage in 2017, including broadcasts in over 100 countries internationally. Barrett-Jackson also endorses a one-of-a-kind collector car insurance for collector vehicles and other valued belongings. For more information about Barrett-Jackson, visit http://www.barrett-jackson.com or call 480-421-6694.