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2023 Collector Car Season Gets Underway with a 1912 Simplex and 2022 Bugatti Chiron Profilee

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Every year in the third week of January, auction week unfolds in Scottsdale, Arizona. This exciting week brings together car enthusiasts and marks the beginning of the collector car season. 

The 2023 collector car season kicked off to a great start, with car collectors from around the world viewing and bidding on stunning classics. The success of the events indicated that the car hobby is still strong and is even growing despite economic concerns and rising interest rates. 

This year’s auction week was tremendous and featured different auctions accompanying the televised Barrett Jackson Auction. These other auctions were held by Worldwide, Bonhams, and RM Sotheby’s. Plus, the week was full of surprises, especially with the highest-selling single vehicle being an unexpected brass-era beauty. 

The Highest Selling Car at Scottsdale: The 1912 Simplex

1912 Simplex

Unsurprisingly, the highly publicized Barrett Jackson Auction drew in the most people over the course of the nine days. The auction’s sales totaled $184 million, with 1,900 cars sold. 

Although the Barrett Jackson Auction was an incredible success, the highest price paid for a single vehicle took place at the Bonhams auction, and the car that attained this impressive accomplishment shocked everyone: the 1912 Simplex. 

The Simplex sold for $4.8 million, which was almost twice the amount of the car’s presale estimate. The reason why the car’s estimation was so much lower than the auction sale is due to the fact that brass-era vehicles – vehicles manufactured before 1915 – have been declining in value. Ostensibly, the car-loving public has lost interest in these classics through the years.

This highly lucrative sale demonstrates that you should never underestimate the money one will pay for a quality, well-preserved car, and appraisers should avoid making generalizations. Every vehicle is unique, and cars should be judged on an individual basis rather than their era’s perceived popularity. 

The 1912 Simplex’s sale at Scottsdale was truly enthralling, and you can learn about other exciting highlights from the auction events here. 

The 2023 Rétromobile Auto Show

A few days after the auctions in Scottsdale began, a special event for car lovers unfolded across the Atlantic in Paris, France: the 2023 Rétromobile Auto Show. Rétromobile proves that the United States isn’t the only country with glowing car enthusiasm and remarkable classic vehicles. The Scottsdale auction week is certainly special, but Rétromobile is also a must-attend event for car lovers. 

With this annual car show being held at the Porte de Versailles, the event is truly a sight to behold with hundreds of breathtaking cars all under one roof. It’s no mystery why this is one of the most popular events in Paris, with over 125,000 visitors from all over Europe. 

Rétromobile primarily focuses on high-end European sports cars, but it also features other vehicles and attractions that are perfect for car enthusiasts. Like with Scottsdale, the event features car auctions from Artcurial, Bonhams, and RM Sotheby’s, and it’s also similar because it includes a swap meet and serves as a chance for car clubs to get together and fraternize at a single event. In fact, Rétromobile features 100 marque-specific clubs that attend to present their brands and attract new members, and these car clubs support the event. 

Our US car clubs can learn a thing or two from these active European clubs. Like with our clubs, European clubs are facing the problem of shrinking membership, but they’re dedicated to recruiting new members and spreading the word about their organizations. These groups are full of incredibly enthusiastic members who make the Rétromobile experience all the more enjoyable.

The Multi-Million Dollar 2022 Bugatti Chiron Profilée

2022 Bugatti Chiron Profilee

Sadly, there were indicators that the European economic downturn is impacting the car community. The event was full of car-loving crowds, but vehicle asking prices and sales suggested that there wasn’t as much money going around for cars as usual. 

That said, RM Sotheby’s made a killing with a total of $50 million in auction sales. Their most prized sale and the car that sold for the most at the event was a 2022 Bugatti Chiron Profilée. The car sold for a whopping $10.6 million!

You can also learn about other incredible highlights from the event here. 

New from Classic Auto Insurance – The Month In Motoring

Classic Auto Insurance is starting a new series called “The Month In Motoring”. Each month our very own Jim Kruse will provide a recap of the high points of what is making news within the collector car hobby. Jim is an avid car collector with over 30 years invested in the collector car industry.

Don’t Wait – Visit a Car Event

There’s nothing like attending a car event such as the Scottsdale auctions and Rétromobile, and these 2023 events showed that car culture is still going strong despite economic uncertainty. If you’re interested in buying or selling a car, now could be the right time. 

Finally, if you’re considering going to a car event, don’t wait – if the last few years have taught us anything, it’s that life can be unpredictable at times. Don’t miss out on attending one of these awesome events and meeting other wonderful car enthusiasts along the way. 

And if you’re fortunate enough to bid on and win an auction on one of these incredible classic cars, make sure you contact Classic Auto Insurance for premium coverage on your valuable piece of history. We offer flexible and customizable classic car insurance policies as well as unique benefits for your car, including rollover miles, inflation guard, nationwide roadside assistance with flatbed towing, and even more. 

Call our classic car experts today at 888-901-1338, or you can get an instant quote here.

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