Ferrari had Pininfarina, and Aston Martin had Zagato, at least for a small number of very limited-edition models. The first was in 1961, the DB4 GT Zagato, with just 19 made. One of those sold for $9.5M a few years ago. The most ambitions collaboration between the British automaker and Italian designer/coachbuilder was a quartet of special bodies built around the second-generation V12-powered Vanquish model from 2017-2019. RM Sotheby’s 2024 Phoenix, Arizona auction is offering #33 of the 99 Vanquish Zagato coupes built, with an estimated selling price of $600K-$650K.
Just 10 supercar connoisseurs were able to buy a McLaren 570 MSO-X, a special track-oriented model, in 2018. Each was decked out in livery inspired by McLaren F1 GTR racecars, and each is unique. At Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale auction in January, the #8 MSO-X will go to a new owner thanks to this auction company’s all no-reserve policy. McLaren built these cars as dual-purpose road and track machines, ready pile on the miles in either setting.
Closing in on the end of another year, Premier Financial Services looks back on its Top-10 exotic cars leased for 2023. This year, Ferrari pushed Porsche out of the #1 leased marque for the year in terms of volume of leases. Lamborghini, however, made a stronger showing on the list with three models in the Top-10. Porsche’s two top sports cars, the 911 GT3 and 911 Turbo S, both made the cut, as well. With its new MC20, Maserati has returned to the mid-engine exotic category after a 45-year absence. The new Maserati grabbed the #10 spot on the list. What’s your favorite?
Will the new Mercedes-Benz CLE be the last of this German luxury car maker’s gas-fueled coupes and convertibles? Based on the new C-Class chassis, the new CLE essentially replaces the somewhat larger E-Class coupe and Cabriolet and offers the promise of more athleticism than those cars. The CLE will cover a wide gamut in price and performance, starting at $65,000 for the base CLE300 coupe 4MATIC and going well beyond that with optioned-up versions of the six-cylinder CLE450 Cabriolet. Future AMG versions are sure to offer more power and excitement, for more money, of course.
What does $400 million buy today? It was enough to take home about 1,200 of the world’s finest collector cars offered at the 2023 Monterey auctions held from August 17-19. That was down from $475M in 2022, and the sell-through rate was lower, too. Just the same, some stellar automobiles traded hands in Monterey at auctions held by Bonhams, Broad Arrow, Gooding & Company, Mecum, and RM Sotheby’s. The top sale was a 1967 Ferrari 412P racecar for $30.2M at Bonhams, while a 1957 Jaguar XKSS, one of just 16 made, was #2 at just over $13M.
The spark that launched Porsche’s road racing dynasty began with the “Fuhrman engine” in the landmark 550 Spyder racecar. Bringing that engine to the 356’s option list in 1956 and calling it “Carrera” boosted Porsche’s racing pedigree while also setting the foundation for special high-performance Porsche models to come. The expensive and complex Carrera engine was rarely ordered when new, and cars so-equipped demand a huge premium in the collector car market today. A 1956 Porsche 356A Speedster Carrera offered by Mecum Auctions in Monterey is expected to sell for up to $1.2M, or nearly 400% more than a Speedster without it.
Lamborghini has entered the electrification era with its first plug-in hybrid, a 1,001-hp hypercar called the Revuelto. Named for a fighting bull that decided to bolt from the ring 143 years ago, the new Lambo shows a rowdy spirit with three electric motors unapologetically teamed with a 6.5-liter, gas-fueled V12 that parties like it’s 1970. Sharpened stealth-jet design could only come from Lamborghini, while new “monofuselage” carbon-fiber construction keeps strength high and weight reasonable. Reports say it’s already sold out for the first two years.
Aston Martin bills its new DB12 grand tourer as a “super tourer” because, the British automaker says, “grand is not enough” to describe the DB11’s successor. Marketing fluff aside, the new DB12 appears to be a super new entry into a segment where its closest rival is the Ferrari Roma. The overall look will be familiar to Aston fans, and the interior steps up to a “super” level of grand touring luxury and tech. The Mercedes-AMG twin-turbo V8 gets a boost to a very super 671 horsepower, easily exceeding the DB11’s V8 and V12. Customer deliveries start in fall.
The most effective sales professionals understand that listening and empathy are the most important skills in their tool kit, and Chris Warren has mastered both. His success at Premier, and over the course of his automotive career, were shaped by lessons he learned at a very young age.