After 30 years, Keith McCormick is celebrating three decades in the car auction business with a new and larger location for the Palm Springs Collector Car Auction.
Starting with the February 26-28, 2016 auction, the new location will be a six-acre site at the Palm Springs Convention Center near downtown, about four blocks from McCormick’s showroom located on Indian Canyon and Amado Road. The auction has been held at the Spa Resort Casino parking lot the past 15 years, which is scheduled for the construction of a new parking garage by the casino.
“We will have a larger, redesigned auction tent,” McCormick said, and parking space for 580 auction cars. There will also be free parking for attendees at the three-day weekend auction. A free shuttle will operate between McCormick’s showroom and the Convention Center. A free round of champagne will begin each day of the auction. And a classic 1967 VW Bug will be auctioned for charity.
The first auction, held in October 1985 at the Marquis Hotel (now called Hard Rock hotel), featured a total of 211 cars and trucks. With 109 vehicles sold, a 53 per cent sales rate, the auction generated $1.2 million in gross sales. It was an impressive event, with drivers in tuxedo shirts and pink bowties. Some top cars then included two Rolls Royce, a 1937 selling for $49,500 and a 1981 for $45,000. A 1985 Porsche brought in $32,300.
Compare those figures with auction last November when 372 vehicles out of 535 generated nearly $7 million in sales, a 70 per cent sales rate. A sales leader included a 1959 Cadillac Series 62 convertible in pristine condition, which sold for $136,000.
The 30th anniversary auction will feature nearly 600 vehicles ranging from late model Ferraris and European classics to American hot rods, muscle and antique cars. The auction is free and open to the public on Friday, Nov. 26. On Saturday and Sunday, a one-day pass is $15 per day or $25 for both days. The Friday auction has been expanded to 180 cars to accommodate more sellers.
The high attendance brings in high-end cars, some worth well into six figures, McCormick said, as well as “a mix of vehicles in all price ranges, some as low as a few thousand dollars. I don’t want to lose touch with the average car collector.”
The auction will stream live via the Internet for three days and people who register in advance may bid for via proxy bidding. At the previous auction, people tuned in from across the United States, Europe and New Zealand to bid on cars.
Video cameras will be set up to show different views of each car as it passes through the auction tent. To connect to the live broadcast, receive registration or more information, go to www.classic-caraution.com
Feb. 26-28, 2016
McCormick’s Palm Springs Collector Car Auction
Palm Springs Convention Center
277 N. Avenida Caballeros
Gates open at 8 a.m. for preview
Friday, noon to 9 p.m., Free
Saturday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
One day pass, $15; two days $25