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Million Dollar Aussie Babies


The 2021 October long weekend saw another round of automotive auctions – and yet another round of record setting prices paid for Aussie classics. A 1996 HSV VS GTSR (build No.01) fetched one million neat, while a HSV W1 GTSR Maloo was passed in at $1.25 million – however it’s expected a private sale for around this sum will be negotiated. That will make it the second W1 Maloo to fetch more than a million this year.




With HSV building a total of four W1 Maloos in their last days as an Australian manufacturer – and being the only one painted in XU3 Yellah color – it’s incredibly rare. While not quite a million, a 4-door W1 (also finished in XU3 Yellah) went for a handsome $750K at the same Loyds auction.




If you’ve been watching the results from the local automotive auction houses, you’d be all too aware of the flurry of Aussie classics that have been going under the hammer for eye-watering amounts. The most notable of which was the recent sale of Paul Carthew’s well-documented and unrestored 1972 XA GTHO Phase IV. Privately traded for a reported $1.75 million, it remains the current high-water mark. Although famed racing machinery bearing names such as Brabham, or Matich routinely sell for far larger sums – including $2.1 million for Peter Brock’s back-to-back (1982 & 1983) Bathurst wining, Group C Commodore – the red Phase IV remains the highest disclosed price ever paid for an Australian made road car.



Other Aussie classics to pull huge dollars in the last 12 months include Peter Brock’s personal (Build No.005) 1985 HDT Group A, Blue Meanie ($1.134 million), a stunning Yellow Glo, 1971 XY GTHO Phase III with vinyl roof that fetched $1.3 million and the other HSV W1 GTSR Maloo (gold) that floored everyone back in January 2020, when the hammer dropped at a staggering $1.05 million! I stress the term ‘hammer price’ as vehicles sold at auction typically incur a Buyer’s Premium (BP) on top of the hammer price – which is in the order of 7.5%.



For many the most surprising of all these sales is the 1996 GTSR. Yes, it was built No.1 of 85, and yes it was in absolutely in ‘as-new’ condition with only 86km on the odometer, however, the million-dollar price tag still took many by surprise. Especially considering another pristine example sold for $335,000 as recently as late 2020.




Next to these million-dollar price tags, $300 to $500K for a collectible XU1/L34/A9X Torana, 350 HG/HQ Monaro, or big-tank E49 Charger all seem like absolute bargains! Many believe the demise of the Aussie car manufacturing industry is driving the near exponential growth in values. Which home-grown classic do you think will be the next Million Dollar Aussie Baby?


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