While the sales total met the early estimates, there were signs of weakness, and prices for many cars have stalled after years of scorching growth.This year, 803 cars were sold of the 1,386 up for auction. The 58 percent sales rate was lower than last year's 61 percent. The median sales price of $96,800 was also lower than last year's $99,000.
Some collectors said they're more reluctant to pay prices they feel have gotten too high and are reaching bubble territory. Others said recent weakness in the stock markets and slowing growth overseas reduced confidence among buyers.
McKeel Hagerty, CEO of Hagerty, said buyers are simply becoming more discerning. They are still willing to pay top dollar for truly top cars, but they're unwilling to continue to bid up more common or lower quality models.
"Bidding generally seemed rational," he said."The dip in prices is a function of slowing momentum and the absence of last year's Ferrari GTO. Prices for special cars are increasing, prices for emerging segments (like 1980-'90s cars) are increasing, but elsewhere prices are consistent with what we witnessed during the January auctions."