SHOWSTOPPING AMERICAN CLASSICS FROM THE THOMAS F. DERRO COLLECTION LEAD RM SOTHEBY'S $15.9 MILLION HERSHEY SALE
RM Sotheby's once again celebrated the American automobile at Hershey Lodge during the world-renowned AACA Eastern Division Fall Meet with $15.9 million in total sales and an incredible 96 percent sell-through rate across two days. Representing one of the company's top Hershey performances to date in the sale's 11-year history, results were driven by bidders from 20 countries and highlighted by several important private collections presented amongst the 140 cars on offer.
The Thomas F. Derro Collection, one of the Northeast's greatest collections of American automobiles, offered entirely without reserve, stole the show on Friday evening, with many lots achieving or exceeding estimates. Drawing tremendous pre-sale interest, the 12-car Derro Collection was led by the 1933 Pierce-Arrow Silver Arrow, the very first of just four examples and a mere three survivors, which brought a final $2.3 million following an extended contest between bidders in the room and on the phone.
The Thursday evening sale session also featured an important collection of cars offered from the estate of the late Ralph Whitworth, the country's foremost collector of hot rods and customs. The group was led by the 1932 Ford “Pete Henderson” Roadster, the well-known '32 Ford that famously beat an undefeated quarter horse in 1944, which saw tremendous pre-sale interest and eventually sold for a final $192,500 (Estimate: $160,000–$180,000). Deuce Coupes were in high demand on the night, with another 1932 Ford Three-Window Coupe Hot Rod with original speed equipment soaring past estimate to reach $90,750 (Estimate: $50,000–$65,000).
Proving that collectors are willing to pay top dollar for the truly special cars at all levels of the market, one of the most anticipated and most unique lots of the Thursday sale was the iconic 1937 White Model 706 Yellowstone Park Tour Bus. Originally supplied to Yellowstone National Park and now upgraded for modern enjoyment, the ultimate party bus ignited a fierce competition between nearly 20 bidders on the phone and in the room, smashing its pre-sale estimate at a final $165,000 (Estimate: $30,000–$40,000). On Friday evening, an immaculately restored, Canadian-delivery 1961 AMC Metropolitan 1500 Convertible also charmed its way past high estimate, attracting a bidding contest that eventually saw it sell at $74,250 (Estimate: $30,000–$40,000).