Have you ever wanted to don a perfectly-fitted tuxedo, sip a martini (shaken, not stirred) and then slip off into the night in your sleek, silver Aston Martin DB5? If these James Bond references sound like a dream come true you might want to head over to RM Sotheby’s yearly flagship auction. It takes place in Monterey, California, where you can bid on the most iconic and recognizable Aston Martin ever built.
The 1965 Aston Martin DB5 is not one of the two vehicles Sean Connery drove in Goldfinger. It was fitted with the exact same spycraft gadgets as those featured in the film, including machine guns, hydraulic battering rams, and a telephone.
The car was then used as a promotional showpiece when 1965’s Bond film, Thunderball, hit theatre reels nationwide. After this, the car was sold to noted collector Lord Anthony Bamford, then to the Smokey Mountain Car Museum in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
In 2006, RM Auctions sold it to Roos Engineering in Switzerland, a designated Aston Martin Heritage Specialist, where it was completely restored. Now, the mint-condition car is expected to fetch between $4 and $6 million.
This auction will take place between August 15 and August 17, when RM Sotheby’s participates in the annual celebration of classic cars known as Monterey Car Week. The week includes auctions, races, shows and other classic-car-centric events. Some of these events are only open to bidders or carry large price tags, but many are affordable and open to the public.
While the Aston Martin carries a lot of pop culture value, many classic car enthusiasts will recognize the 1954 Maserati A6GCS as the true belle of the ball at this year’s RM Sotheby’s auction. The car, chassis no. 2078, is the 25th of only 52 of these cars ever made, and it was completed in March 1954.
Italian driver Luigi Musso piloted the spyder in a variety of races, including in a third-place finish at the Mille Miglia, a World Sportscar Championship round, and a first-place victory at the Grand Prix Napoli in 1954. Cesare Perdisa drove 2078 at the 1954 Bologna-Passo della Raticosa, where he won his class and finished second overall.
In February 1955, Maserati sold the car to Ricardo Grandio, who continued to race the car in his home country of Argentina. He won third overall in the Buenos Aires 1000 KM that year, but the car was soon passed through a variety of hands in Buenos Aires.
According to the son of one owner, the car was given to his father without an engine, at which point he found an original A6GCS engine and installed it in 2078. In February 1970, the spyder was featured on the cover of Parabrisas Corsa.
After another sequence of owners, the A6GCS was sold to Paolo Dabbeni in 1984. He returned the car to Italy and raced it in the Mille Miglia, as did its next owner, Gianni Vitali. In 1993, the car was featured in an article in Ruoteclassiche and, three years later, received a FIVA identity card. In 1998, an American purchased the car and has owned it up to the present day. The year after he bought it, the owner hired Italian craftsmen to construct a replica of this particular car, which still exists in Italy.
The owner has continued to race the A6GCS in a variety of settings, including the Monterey Historics, the Wine Country Classic, the Colorado Grand, and the Mille Miglia. It received a new engine from Crosthwaite & Gardiner, which used the engine from 2078 to produce a limited number of reproduction A6GCS engines.
After receiving restorations to the body, the spyder won the Gran Turismo Award at the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, and it was also chosen by Sony Entertainment to represent the A6GCS in its Gran Turismo video game. This Maserati is expected to fetch at least $3.25 million at this year’s auction.
Other classic cars featured at the 2019 RM Sotheby’s Monterey auction include a 1939 Porsche Type 64 believed to be the only one of its kind still in existence, a 1964 Aston Martin DB5 saloon, and a 2014 Pagani Huayra Tempesta “Scozia” with Scottish tartan interiors. You can view more of the extensive, glamorous collection of cars available for this year’s auction on the RM Sotheby’s website.
RM Sotheby’s was formed in 2015 when the 275-year-old auction house Sotheby’s established a partnership with RM Auctions, a classic car auctioning organization founded in 1991. At last year’s Monterey auction, the new organization set a record for the most expensive car ever auctioned: a Ferrari 250 GTO that sold for $48.4 million to Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll, a partial owner of the SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team Formula and avid Ferrari collector whose son, Lance Stroll, is a Formula One race car driver.
Lawrence is also known for bringing Ralph Lauren clothing to Canada, and his investments in Tommy Hifiger and Michael Kors were instrumental in bringing those brands to international fame. The second most valuable lot at the 2018 auction was a 1963 Aston Martin DP215 Grand Touring Competition Prototype that sold for $21.5 million, followed by a 1966 Ford GT40 Mk II that sold for $9.8 million.
If you’re interested in bidding on any of the luxurious automobiles featured in this year’s auction, get in touch with RM Sotheby’s Chief Marketing Officer Ian Kelleher at email@example.com. The auction is open to potential bidders (with a $300 price tag just to attend), but you can bet we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled for more updates on these gorgeous cars.