A staggering £30,938 has been paid for a 1989 Peugeot 205 GTI at Silverstone Auctions 31 July sale, a result that comes hot on the heels of a fully restored example fetching £25,200 earlier in the year.
The exceptional result owes much to the car’s outstanding condition, having covered just 7986 miles and being garaged from new. Shortly after it was driven home from the Peugeot dealership its first owner was offered a company car, relegating the 205 to use on high days and holidays. It was then laid up from 2004 until 2012, after which the hot hatch was professionally recommissioned.
“The vehicle looks, drive and smells as close to new as you would find,” said the vendor. “In other words, it is as close as you would ever get to being able to walk into a Peugeot dealership in 2016 and purchase a brand-new model of what is generally recognised as being the best hot hatch ever built.”
It wasn’t the only modern classic to make big money: a low-mileage BMW E36 M3 also caused a stir after fetching £19,690. The 1994 car had covered just 39,200 miles throughout its life and had been well looked after by two previous owners. Like the 205, the M3 spent a number of years in storage – 12 in this case – contributing to its low mileage and tidy condition.
An ex-Nigel Mansell Audi quattro also did well, getting away for £26,438. The car was sold with a copy of its original Isle of Man registration document in Mansell’s name, plus receipts detailing a vast amount of restoration work including £15,000 spent on parts alone.
The top price of the day was reserved for a 1958 AC Ace Bristol, which fetched £249,750. The highly original example had spent much of its early life in road car trim in British Columbia before being repatriated in the 1990s and converted to right-hand-drive.
The AC was later the subject of an engine and gearbox rebuild prior to competing in the 2010 Spa 6 Hours, Dijon-Prenois and Sir Stirling Moss Trophy for pre-1961 sports cars at the Silverstone Classic.
The competition car sale was dominated by a 1981 Porsche 924 Carrera GTR, which went for an incredible £495,000. The 109km example was originally delivered to Japan, where it remained in purpose-built storage for many years, being carefully maintained by Porsche specialists.