Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 6 August 2020

Donald Trump’s Ferrari sells at auction for $270,000

Bidding on the car stopped at $240,000, $10,000 below the low estimate of $250,000 for the car, which had been expected to take as much as $350,000.
A Ferrari F430 owned by US president Donald J Trump in 2007 is exhibited by Autcions America in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Leila Macor / AFP
A Ferrari F430 owned by US president Donald J Trump in 2007 is exhibited by Autcions America in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Leila Macor / AFP

NEW YORK // US president Donald Trump’s 2007 Ferrari F430 F1 Coupe left the auction block before meeting its reserve price on Saturday in Florida.

Bidding on the car stopped at $240,000, $10,000 below the low estimate of $250,000 for the car, which had been expected to take as much as $350,000.

Hours later, the auction house issued a statement which said “we can confirm it exchanged hands just minutes after it left the podium” for a final sale price of $270,000 (Dh991,521).

The company did not name the buyer or release more details about the off-the-record sale.

Prices can vary widely on the V8, 490-horsepower car. R M Sotheby’s sold a 2008 Ferrari F430 GTC for $490,310 in January in Paris; a 2008 Ferrari F430 Scuderia sold for $182,600 at a Motostalgia sale in Amelia Island, Florida.

Sotheby’s sold a yellow 2007 F430 Spider for $357,500 in 2016. Other F430s in various conditions can be found online for as much as $234,500 and as little as $121,000.

Pristine, low-mileage versions, especially those with manual transmission or special craftsmanship, hold value better than other examples.

Mr Trump’s car included Daytona-style seats and Scuderia crests on the bumpers. It had yellow dials, a radio with a CD changer, and a carbon dash insert.

The price was disappointing considering that other cars of his have sold well.

Mr Trump’s Cadillac limousine went for $68,261 at a Bonhams sale last month in England. The total was four to seven times the average value of an American limo from the same era, according to data from Hagerty, which specialises in insuring classic cars.

His Lamborghini Diablo sold $460,000 in September last year on eBay. That was 75 per cent higher than today’s current average price for Diablos.

The low price for the F430 could have been affected by the fact that the car belonged to a “polarising” president who used it himself, said Jonathan Klinger, a spokesman for Hagerty.

Mr Trump bought it new in 2007 and owned it for four years, enough to add on 3,860 kilometres (total mileage is nearly 9,660 kilometres). It is certainly the only supercar to have been owned by a sitting president. Maybe it would have been worth more if Mr Trump still owned it. The car was offered to the auction house by its second and current owner.

“The appeal is slightly lower than if [bidders] were buying the car directly from Trump,” Mr Klinger said.

In fact, most sales of presidential memorabilia come after a former chief executive’s death. Last year, a pair of cowboy boots owned by Ronald Reagan carried a high estimate of $20,000 but sold for $199,500. A concrete shard of the Berlin wall signed by Reagan sold for $277,500. It had been expected to take $20,000.

The result for Mr Trump’s Ferrari also added evidence that the F430 is not necessarily a superior investment, something the vintage car market has shown for some time.

Average values at auction for this model have fallen 15 per cent over the last five years, according to Hagerty, hovering near $120,000 to $130,000 for a car with an F1 (paddle-shift) gearbox.

The original manufacturer’s suggested retail price ranged from $185,000 to $215,000.

The gearbox is key to holding value, Mr Klinger said, specifically whether a car has a true manual transmission as opposed to the six-speed paddle-shifter in Mr Trump’s Ferrari.

“I would expect the cars with the F1 gearbox, like this one, to continue to depreciate for the near future,” Mr Klinger said.

“These were some of the last Ferraris available with manual transmission, making them worth considerably more than the F1 cars,” Mr Klinger said. “A manual car is worth somewhere from 50 to 75 per cent more than the F1 gearbox cars.”

* Bloomberg

Updated: April 2, 2017 04:00 AM

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