These Were The 10 Most Expensive Cars Sold At The 2022’s Red-Hot Auctions

Over 5000 collector cars crossed the auction in the first month of 2022, bringing in over $480 million. In case of any misunderstanding, $480 million is quite a vast number, too big even with enthusiasts’ expectations that 2022 would be a great year in the automotive world. Mecum’s Kissimmee sale was the first-ever single collector-vehicle auction to produce $200 million. The other five sales in and around Scottsdale also performed excessively well.
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Although the number of auctions and consignments were both low, every other number was high – the cars were relatively few, but they brought profits in masses. Other auction events are yet to happen within the year, but January set the bar. What stood out about the Red-Hot Auction was the level of diversity. The event featured some of the best supercars from the 1990s, muscle cars of the 1960s, modern hypercars, 1950s American classic cars, and a few prewar classic vehicles. Here are ten of the most significant sales of the 2022 Red-Hot Auctions.

10 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Aluminum Gullwing Coupe – $6,825,000


It has been six years since one of the 29 units of this exotic Aluminum Gullwing Coupe showed up at public sale events, and almost ten since one actually sold. So, despite it looking like a regular old Gullwing Coupe, this 300SL Aluminum Gullwing Coupe was by far the most valuable participant at the Arizona Sale this year.

1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Aluminum Gullwing Coupe.

It is not only an alloy car. It’s a premium specimen. RM Sotheby’s says it is among the few vehicles that have retained their matching numbers and alloy body. This specific car has not been damaged, has not undergone serious repairs, and was restored by Gullwing experts at Paul Russell & Company in the 1970s. At $6,825,000, the Aluminum Gullwing Coupe remains one of the most expensive classics sold at public auctions.

9 1965 Shelby GT350R Prototype – $3,750,000

1965 Shelby GT350R Prototype

The 1965 Shelby GT350R is more than just a Mustang; it is the prototype that laid the foundation for all other GT350Rs built by Shelby Carroll to tackle SCCA racing. The car won its first race in 1965 and went on to bag a total of 10 wins the same year, the same year that Shelby Mustangs dominated the B-Production division. The Prototype continued racing from 1966 to ’68 before crossing the border into Mexico to compete in the Mexican Trans-Am series.

1965 Shelby GT350R Prototype.

Known as the Flying Mustang, the GT350R Prototype is among the most important cars in Ford’s history. It was restored between 2010 and 2014 and sold at a record-breaking price of $3.85M in 2020 at Indy. In Kissimmee, bidding rose quickly to $3.4M and closed at $3,750,000.

8 1931 Duesenberg Model J Derham Tourster – $3,415,000

1931 Duesenberg Model J Derham Tourster

1931 Duesenberg Model J Derham Tourster is the fourth of eight original Derham Tourster models ever built, and it retains its original chassis, coachwork, firewall, and engine. The Tourster also features an award-winning restoration work that puts it atop the list of the most adored classics of all time.
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1931 Duesenberg Model J Derham Tourster.

Model J prices vary, mainly depending on the body type, and this five-passenger version is among the most desirable. The vehicle was built exclusively by Derham in Pennsylvania, and like the Derham sedan at Worldwide, the Tourster surpassed its presale value and changed hands at $3,415,000.

7 2020 McLaren Speedtail – $3,300,000

2020 McLaren Speedtail.

Being a new and exotic supercar built in limited numbers, the Speedtail is among the rarest performance vehicles in the modern auto world. And this explains why only a handful of these center-seat hypercars have shown up at auctions. Technically, the car comes in the under $2M range, but as it mostly happens with rare machines like the Speedtail, they tend to increase in value once they start hitting the broader market of affluent collectors.

2020 McLaren Speedtail

A slight peep in the past shows RM Sotheby’s selling a Speedtail for $3.14M in Monterey and Arizona for $3,277,500 last year. So, the $3,300,000 price at the Red-Hot event makes perfect sense. The Speedtail sold in January belonged to mattress mogul Michael Fux, whose reputation for buying loud, special-order colors like this Volcano-Yellow supercar is outstanding.

6 1992 Ferrari F40 – $2,750,000

1992 Ferrari F40.

Last year in Monterey, the Ferrari F40 showed a massive leap in value when three examples of the vehicle sold for $2,892,000, $2,425,000, and $1,600,000. Before 2021, the most expensive US-Spec F40 sold at auction was $1.71M.

1992 Ferrari F40

The Monterey sales were not a result of chance or luck as this 1992 F40 classic fetched nearly the same amount, only higher at $2,750,000. What was surprising about the sale was the 8732 miles on the odometer. While rare analog beauty have been among the most sought-after vehicles in an already hotly contested market segment, the F40 is at the top of the list.

5 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Coupe – $2,640,000

1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Coupe

Another iconic and equally exotic 300SL is this 1955 Gullwing Coupe that showed up at the Kissimmee event in style. The car surpassed its presale estimated value of $2M and the condition #1 status to score a whopping $2,640,000.

1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Coupe.

The vehicle is professionally restored and features adorable Rudge wheels. But is this enough to explain this massive result? Probably not. The number of bidders willing and able to part with large sums of money for this car was unexplainable, and it is the only viable reason for its $2.6M price.

4 1964 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster – $2,315,000

1964 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster
By Lothar Spurzem – Own work, CC BY-SA 2.0 de,

The 300SL is among the most iconic Mercedes-Benz classics ever built, coupe or convertible. And this particular model represented the third-to-last 300SL Roadster ever built. It features notable improvements such as the disc brakes and the alloy engine block only available on newer cars. The car also came with a factory hardtop and is believed to have been built and delivered new to the Shah of Iran. Before January, the 300SL Roadster was thoroughly restored to high standards.
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1964 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster.
By Lothar Spurzem – Own work, CC BY-SA 2.0 de,

The Roadster’s price in Arizona puts it in condition #1 in the Hagerty price guide, the fourth-highest price ever paid for a 300SL Roadster at auction. It sold for $2,035,000 in 2014 before restoration and sold for a whopping $2,315,000 in January this year after restoration.

3 1929 Duesenberg Model J Derham Sedan – $2,260,000

1929 Duesenberg Model J Derham Sedan

For a while, the automotive community believed that nobody wanted prewar cars anymore. Well, collectors at the Scottsdale auction begged to differ, and this 1929 Duesenberg Model J Derham Sedan is living proof. It was one of the biggest surprises at the auction. Its fully restored engine brought $847,000 inclusive of buyer’s premium and took another $1.4M to acquire the actual Model J, which drives perfectly well.

1929 Duesenberg Model J Derham Sedan.

The car came wearing a swoopy period bodywork by Bohman & Schwartz that made it look pretty old and excellently restored. The Duesenberg Model J Derham Sedan sold for $737,000 in 2018, fetching $2,260,000 three years was a massive appreciation.

2 1951 Hirohata Mercury Custom – $2,145,000

1951 Hirohata Mercury Custom
By ATOMIC Hot Links – Flickr: NHRA Museum, CC BY-SA 2.0,

There are only 30 cars listed on the National Historic Vehicle Register, and the Hirohata Merc is one of them. The vehicle was customized by brothers George and Sam Barris for Bob Hirohata, and it is arguably the most popular custom vehicle ever built. It has graced some top automotive magazines like Hot Rod to Motor Trend and inspired several custom vehicles.

1951 Hirohata Mercury Custom.

Like many cars that showed up for the Red-Hot auction this January, the Merc surpassed Mecum’s estimated presale value of between $1M and $1.25M to sell for a whopping $2,145,000. For reference, the best and well-kept standard 1951 Mercury Club Coupe costs only around $55,000.

1 2016 Pagani Huayra – $2,117,500

2016 Pagani Huayra

Pagani produces some of the rarest cars in the world – its cars are hand-built, bespoke beauties, naturally with high price tags. Only 100 Huayra models were built, so it’s always a momentous occasion when one comes up for sale.

2016 Pagani Huayra.

The average price of a Huayra ranges between $1.8m and $2m, and this 725-mile modern supercar had a presale value within that range. Expensive! But not according to the guy who acquired it for a massive $2,117,500. Featuring a black and gold over red and black paint job, the 2016 Pagani Huayra was a beauty that anyone would be more than willing to part with such an amount of money.

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