‘Transparency is important’: The Market by Bonhams aim to modernise classic car auctions



    Legendary British auction house Bonhams have previously broken records for the most expensive vintage vehicles ever sold at auction. This includes a 1962 Ferrari 250 GRO Berlinetta sold in 2014 for $38,115,000, or £27.6million, a world record for the most valuable motor car sold at the time.

    They also sold an ultra-rare Vincent Black Lightning motorcycle for $929,000 (£651,715 at the time) including buyer’s premium in 2018.

    Whilst Bonhams has been an international auction giant since 1793, The Market by Bonhams was only launched in 2017, but has since taken the industry by storm.

    In the last year, the company sold vehicles with a total value of £13million and grew its turnover by almost 300 percent.

    But now, The Market by Bonhams, under the leadership of Caroline Cassini, is one of the most rapidly growing online marketplaces for classic and collectible cars.

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    “They thought we had to have Corvettes and Mustangs, but the US is pretty broad.

    “It’s funny how the UK views the US and how the US views the UK market.

    “From speaking with some of the team in the UK, people aren’t as comfortable with buying a car sight unseen as they are here in the States, I think it’s just become more normal for them.

    “There is a place for live auctions, and they will not be going away anytime soon, especially with Bonhams.

    “Even The Market, we’re still going to have the Quail Lodge Auction, Amelia Island and Scottsdale and a couple others each year.’

    Caroline placed an emphasis on the transparency that The Market wanted to get across, especially with the world still in the grips of the coronavirus.

    She continued, saying: “I think it is a really unique opportunity for Bonhams to be able to present cars 24/7 and to a really wide range of clientele.

    “We’re going to be transparent (with auctions), we’ll have about 300 photos at least of each car, not including any documentation that it comes with.

    “I think people will feel comfortable purchasing a car from our platform because they will see over 300 photos of each car in great detail.

    “Unlike some of our competitors, we do plan to keep all of our listings up even if they are unsold.

    “We’ll also keep the comment sections up and live even after the auction has ended, but we think that being transparent is important for an online platform.”

    Currently available on The Market by Bonhams is a 1993 Ford Sierra Cosworth with a current bid of more than £40,000.

    The Market hopes to continue putting more cars on display, aiming to have at least one new car up for auction every day.


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