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One of the most highly anticipated auction lots in recent times, the Type 64 designed by Ferdinand Porsche, fell short of its reserve in confusing circumstances during RM Sotheby’s Monterey sale on Saturday (17 August).
Dubbed the original Porsche, the Type 64 was the blueprint for the groundbreaking Porsches that followed and the only example to survive WW2 was expected to fetch more than $20 million.
But it appeared to be heading far, far beyond, with bids leaping rapidly to $70m on the screen – only for the auctioneer to clarify: the number should have been $17m, and the fervent room seemed to swap excitement for disbelief.
Bidding failed to stretch further and the car remains unsold.
In reaction to the sale, RM Sotheby’s has said: “As bidding opened on the Type 64, increments were mistakenly displayed on the screen, causing unfortunate confusion in the room. We take pride in conducting our world-class auctions with integrity and we take our responsibility to our clients very seriously.
“This was in no way intentional on behalf of anyone at RM Sotheby’s, rather an unfortunate misunderstanding amplified by excitement in the room. The car did reach a high bid of $17 million but did not meet reserve. We will continue making every effort to sell the car.
“We have been honoured to present a car that holds such significance to automotive history as the 1939 Porsche Type 64. It has been an incredible journey in the lead up to Monterey as we were given the opportunity to share the genesis of one of the hobby’s most legendary brands with the world and work with renowned enthusiasts in the Porsche community.
“It is difficult to put a price on such a unique and historically significant artefact, and despite interest from discerning collectors, we were unable to reach common ground between seller and buyer on the night.”
The Type 64’s auction took place on Saturday, the final day of the auction house’s long few days of sales.
A ‘Bond’ Aston Martin DB5 first hit the headlines by becoming the most expensive DB5 ever at auction, while a McLaren F1 LM-Specification claimed its model’s mantle at just shy of $20m.
Full official results are expected to follow later today.
Images: Staud Studios © 2019 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s