“For Enthusiasts – By Enthusiasts.”™ Much more than a tagline, it’s Russo and Steele’s lifestyle. One that infuses all aspects of their auction events.
The 15th Anniversary Scottsdale auction was a perfect case in point. Closing out the weeks enthusiast driven festivities and continuing to build on the foundation of outstanding, diverse and sought after collector automobiles and all the high energy block intensity that Russo and Steele is known for, the Scottsdale auction event kept bidders engaged and excited throughout entire week and closed out with a bang.
Russo and Steele is still trying to process the final sales totals, but early indicators point to excellent results in several of the fastest-rising areas of today’s collector-car marketplace.
When the gavel fell for the last time, some of the weeks most talked about lot numbers included:
#2565 1957 300SL Roadster – $1,430,000.00
One of the most collectible, historic, and instantly-recognizable sports cars ever conceived, this 1957 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Roadster is one of just 1,858 examples built in all from 1957 through 1963. Highly detailed, it is simply resplendent and continues to benefit handsomely from over 25 years of single ownership in California and a restoration completed in 2007. This stunning automobile is fully documented in the 300 SL Registry.
#2235 1969 Camaro ZL1 – $335,500.00
One of just 69 produced and one of three COPO 9737 cars, this ZL-1 was raced from new and it is a former National drag racing record holder. Factory features include radio delete, M21 4-speed, Black Standard interior, X44 Trim Code, and Fathom Green paint. Offered from 15 years of single ownership, it is a certified original-body car retaining mostly original sheet metal. A multiple magazine-feature car, it comes with the original window sticker, documents, and as-found photographs, it is a great example of the baddest purpose-built Chevy racing car ever created.
#2074 1970 Ford Mustang Boss 429 – $330,000.00
An outstanding example of one of the most famous American muscle cars ever built, this 1970 Ford Mustang Boss 429 Fastback is a 2-owner car. Features include a Toploader 4-speed manual transmission, Drag Pack, and Competition Suspension. A recipient of a complete restoration overseen by a senior Mustang Club of America official in 2011, all parts used in the restoration were NOS or OEM components and are documented in its accompanying restoration book.
#2275 1974 Porsche 911 2.7 RS – $305,500.00
This very sought after limited production 1974 Euro Carrera 2.7 RS, was not originally available in the US. It was first delivered on the 17th of May 1974, to the Prince of Bahrain, at the Porsche Factory in Stuttgart, Germany. This Carrera (# 947) was always lavishly stored and maintained, and comes complete with a Porsche Certificate of Authenticity, showing it to be all numbers matching with a certified mileage of only 58,837 or 94,140 kms.
#2080 1957 Porsche 356 Speedster – $286,000.00
Originally offered as a lower cost option designed to appeal to the U.S. market, Porsche 356 Speedsters are now considered one of the most beautiful and sought after production Porsche models of all time. Then sole Porsche U.S. importer Max Hoffman initially sold the idea believing that a raw, open top version of the 356 would be a hit in the United States. With its low profile, racing inspired removable windshield, bucket seats and minimal folding top, the Speedster became an instant object of desire. Just 1 of approximately 1,171 Speedsters produced in 1957, this Ivory over red, California specialist restored example continues to prove just how correct he was.
#2525 1970 Plymouth Hemi Cuda “Original” – $247,500.00
This 1970 Hemi ‘Cuda is believed the sole example retaining its original FJ5 Limelight Hi-Impact paint finish. With its VIN decoded by noted Chrysler expert Galen Govier, this Hemi ‘Cuda was scheduled for production on Monday, October 13, 1969 at Chrysler’s Hamtramck, Michigan assembly plant and built to perform – at very high speeds – with its highway-friendly 3.23:1 Sure-Grip rear end and absence of power-robbing luxury options. Nonetheless, this Hemi ‘Cuda was equipped new with power brakes (with front discs), power steering, the famed ‘Shaker’ hood and competition-style hood pins. High-Grade trim includes black vinyl bucket seats, dual outside mirrors, a black vinyl top, chrome exhaust tips, a floor console, and a Music Master AM radio.
#2071 1959 Echidna Chassis #2 – $162,800.00
During the 1950s “Golden Age” of sports-car racing in the United States, one of the most competitive and consistent specials was the Echidna, conceived, designed and built by Ed Grierson, Bill Larson, and John Staver of Hibbing, Minnesota. Named after the reclusive Australian spiny anteaters immortalized in Greek mythology as the mother of all monsters, Echidnas – numbering just three in all – ruled SCCA C- and B-Modified competition. Echidna number 2 is powered by a hot small-block Chevy equipped with the legendary Rochester fuel-injection unit and backed by a T-10 four-speed gearbox. On the track, the Echidnas competed against and beat many of the era’s best sports racers, including Jaguar D-types, Lister-Jaguars and Corvettes, Ferrari 750 and 860 Monzas, Mondials and Testa Rossas, and the Maserati 450S, making them some of the most important American race cars of the era.
#2113 1953 Jaguar XK120 – $143,000.00
This 1953 Jaguar XK 120, a Special Equipment model sometimes known colloquially in the US as the XK 120M, was built in 1952. The speed plaque on the XK 120 SE certified 132mph, from a naturally aspirated 3.4 engine in a 3,100 lb car. The restoration began with the purchase of an incredibly rare set of dual-throat SU carbs and manifold manufactured in the 1950’s and appearing only on a few race cars such as some of the Lemans Triumphs and the Hughes Kircher Jaguar Special XK 120. The former owner purchased the carbs and began searching for a competition XK 120 as a home for them. This car has been featured in the Robb Report and the English magazine Jaguar Quarterly.
Unquestionably, the Russo and Steele 15th Anniversary Auction Celebration marked a thrilling experience on all levels and a fitting introduction to 2015’s auction series. Following the high-octane action on the auction block, sales are closed and beginning is processing transactions that will provide the finalized results.