Classic car collection for auction at $1 reserve on Trade Me, buyers flock to Sunday Drive showroom

The owner of a $750,000 collection of classic cars and motorbikes says he is auctioning them off so he can go off and enjoy life overseas.

The man, who wishes to remain anonymous, told the Herald his huge collection of vintage cars, bikes and memorabilia has been sitting in storage for three years.

His children and grandchildren live in the United States, andhe has spent the past seven years with them – visiting Aotearoa every few years to check in.

However, with Covid-19 hitting in 2020 and the closing of the border, he had been unable to travel backwards and forwards as usual and hasdecided it’s time to say good bye to the collection of a lifetime.

“Those cars have all been locked up in the shed sitting there so now we’ve decided we’re both getting older, in our 70s and I’ll soon be 80 so we’re selling to go and enjoy life.”

He says his collection started with a 1938 Ford, which he bought almost 50 years ago.

“That’s the first one I had and I’ll be sad to see it go -I’ve driven it all over the country multiple times.”

But as sad as he may be to see his collection sold, he hopes thebuyers will love them as he has.

“We’re all just custodians of these things and one day they need to be passed on to someone who will care for them,” he told the Herald.

The collection ranges from a 1935 Ford Coupe with a fully rebuilt engine, and a heavily invested-in Jaguar S with a restored motor and transmission to a 1952 Matchless G.9 motorbike.

For non-drivers, there are items such as a 1970s pinball machine, or an antique dentist’s chair, or a rebuilt cash register – all with their own history.

The auction is being run through Sunday Drive – and remarkably all items are being listed on Trade Me with $1 reserve.

Taylor Campbell, Sunday Drive’s principal, told the Herald he doesn’t expect the $1 reserve to last long at all.

“There’s so much hype around it, I expect a lot of the stuff is going to go for market value.”

Campbell says the carpark of Sunday Drive has been overrun already – on just the first day of the auction.

“It’s going crazy, the carpark is full and so far, we’ve had 50 groups of people – to be honest I’m a little worried about what tomorrow is going to look like, as it’s Saturday.”

He says one of the motorbikes listed to Trade Me had reached $4500 in just 20 minutes – and expected that would be the case for the rest of the listings.

For the collection’s owner, he just wants buyers who will share the same love he had when he was younger.

“Whoever buys them will love them, care for them and look after them. When you get a bit long in the tooth and stale you don’t have the enthusiasm you had as a 20 or 30-year-old, so if someone that age buys them they’ll love them and do them up and be enthused about them like I was.”

The auction started on Friday, May 13 on Trade Me and ends on Sunday, May 22. Prospective buyers are invited to view the auction lots at Sunday Drive’s showroom in Penrose, with viewing scheduled from Monday to Saturday10am to 4pm.

A full list of what is on offer at the auction can be found here.

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