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Falcon GT-HO Makes $331,000 At Shannons Sale

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MELBOURNE – Jun 1, 2010: A 1971 Ford XY Falcon GT-HO Phase III put Australian Supercars back on the agenda for collectors when it sold for $331,000 at Shannons Melbourne Winter Auction on Monday May 31.

The fully-restored Monza Green sedan, which is believed to have had six owners from new and had 107,000 miles (172,000km) on the ‘clock’, was the subject of a fierce bidding war between floor and telephone bidders at the auction, driving its price above its pre-sale guiding range of $260,000-$320,000.

Bidding started at $260,000 and rose in $10,000 leaps before finally ending in a $1,000 slugging match, with victory going to a telephone bidder.

The sale confirms the status of the Phase III GT-HO as Australia’s premier muscle car of the late 1960s and early 1970s, when Ford, Holden and Chrysler waged an annual battle with limited production ‘supercars’ in the Bathurst 1000 endurance classic. The GT-HO Phase III gained cult status when it took five of the top six places in the 1971 race, with Allan Moffat at the wheel of the winning car.

The sale of the GT-HO was the cherry on top of a bumper auction for Shannons, with sales of cars, memorabilia and heritage number plates of $1.7 million, representing an impressive clearance rate of nearly 80 per cent.

Nostalgia was in high demand, with an iconic right hand drive1957 Chevrolet Belair Sports Coupe that had undergone a no-expense spared nut-and-bolt restoration selling after strong bidding for $99,000.

Meanwhile a left hand drive 1961 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible that until two years ago was the personal car of outrageous rock legend Alice Cooper, sold for $78,000. A feature of the car was its third ‘Fender’ – a Fender Squier guitar signed by Alice Cooper that was included in the sale.

At the other end of the price scale, a 1944 model left hand drive Willy Jeep made an excellent $21,000; a 1948 Fiat Topolino 500B Coupe in lovely condition that had been in the same family for virtually all its life sold for an unprecedented $20,000; a fully-restored and correct 1968 Volkswagen Beetle made $18,500; a 1971 London taxi cab in very good condition sold for $15,000 and a low mileage, three-owner 1951 Holden 48-215 (FX) sedan brought $12,000 – the latter two vehicles offered with no reserve.

Other classic vehicles to post exceptional results included a silver 1950 Jaguar Mk V 3.5 Saloon in lovely, restored condition that made $47,000 – just $3,000 less than the $50,000 paid for a former-Californian1969 Jaguar E-Type 4.2 Series 2, 2+2 Coupe.

A classic 1946 Plymouth ‘Woody’ Station wagon upgraded mechanically with a Chevrolet 327-cid V8 engine and Turbo 400 automatic transmission made $50,000; an original Australian-delivered 1983 Mercedes-Benz 380SL Convertible sold for an impressive $34,000, while a 1972 Mercedes-Benz 500SL went for $28,000.

Victorian black and white Heritage number plates were also in high demand at the auction, with a 100 per cent clearance rate for a combined total of $631,000.

The top selling plate at $100,000 was ‘153’, which in the 1970s was fitted to the Government car of Victorian Premier Sir Rupert ‘Dick’ Hamer, while ‘208’ sold for $95,000, ‘213’ brought $85,000 and ‘654’ made $52,000.

Shannons National Auction Manager Christophe Boribon described the sale in front of a large floor crowd of 500-600 people as “a very good result”.

“We had many astute buyers looking for quality vehicles at the auction and the cars we offered realised the prices they deserved,” he said.