More than 100 classic cars were sold Saturday during the third annual auction Grande Salon Classic Car Auction. Many of the highest bids came on muscle cars and high-end luxury vehicles. The star of Saturday’s auction appeared to be the 1912 Ford Six Speedster, which was built as an engineering study, then to race and later refined for a teenage Edsel Ford, son of Henry Ford.
Debbie Kettering was on her fifth or sixth loop outside the white tent of the 2012 Grande Salon Classic Car Auction on Saturday when a friend told her that she was three cars away.
The news made the North Canton woman pace even more. She shoved her hands deep into her baggy jeans and walked another circle from the entrance of the tent to a grassy patch about 15 feet away.
Kettering was selling her Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS two-door coupe, a car she bought new in 1987 from Ewing Chevrolet in Canton.
“I had to have it,” she recalled. “It was black and shiny and it had T-tops. Back in ’87, that was the cool thing. ... That was before children.”
The car still has only 7,200 miles on it, nearly all driven by her late husband, Dave, a car buff and longtime Rupples Automotive employee who died in May. Kettering herself only drove it once.
“It’s one of those things where you buy it because you have to have it, and then you get it and ... you’re afraid of it because it goes so fast,” she said.
And there’s no way she was going to let her daughters — ages 16 and 13 — ever get behind the wheel.
Saturday was the first time Kattering ever tried to sell a car at an auction. It also marked her first time at the Glenmoor Gathering of Significant Automobiles, now in its 18th year.
HOPING FOR $12,000
Kettering walked back to the tent as the auctioneer yelled, “sold, sold, sold” on a Cadillac Eldorado Convertible that garnered a bid of $11,900. She peered into the tent and asked, “Where the hell am I?”
“You are behind the truck,” her friend Mike Sylvester answered. “You’re in good shape.”
Kettering shifted her weight side to side, wringing her hands around the Miller Lite can she held.
“You are a nervous wreck,” Sylvester observed. “Relax.”
Next in the tent was the truck, a 1976 Ford F-150 Pickup with an eye-catching paint scheme of purple, teal and white. It failed to get a high enough bid to meet its minimum selling price. Kettering was hoping for at least $12,000.
As her Monte Carlo rolled into the tent, the auctioneer began the bidding at $5,000.
Quickly, the price jumped to $8,000, then $10,000 and up to $11,750 where it seemed to stall out.
The auctioneer asked, “Can I sell that car?” Kettering shook her head, “no.”
The bidding continued. It crept up to $12,500, then $12,750 and landed on $13,000. Sold.
Sylvester turned to Kettering, “There you go! A thousand more than you wanted.”
Kettering exhaled, and she was finally able to stand still.
Page 2 of 2 - Kettering’s car was one of more than 100 cars sold Saturday during the third annual auction held by Classic Motorcar Auctions.
Bob Lichty, president of the Canton company and longtime car enthusiast, estimated that sales surpassed $1.6 million, which was at least 60 percent higher than last year’s auction that offered 145 vehicles.
Many of the highest bids came on muscle cars and high-end luxury vehicles. A 1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Phaeton, which was the first American front-wheel drive car with independent front suspension and a tube rear axle with semi-elliptic rear springs, sold for $180,000.
The star of Saturday’s auction appeared to be the 1912 Ford Six Speedster, which was built as an engineering study, then to race and later refined for a teenage Edsel Ford, son of Henry Ford. The car with its one-of-a-kind six-cylinder engine sold for $135,000, which was lower than its $150,000 appraisal.
Richard Hussar of Canton lamented the car’s sale. He said he was in Michigan in 1985 on the day the Henry Ford Museum auctioned the car, which had been in the museum’s collection since the 1920s.
“They (museum) never should have sold it,” he said. “It’s the only one like with this with a six-cylinder (engine).”
Lichty said the roughly 50 cars that didn’t sell Saturday will be available for private sale today. His company also will be auctioning memorabilia including antique auto parts, brass lamps, hood ornaments, bronze and pewter automobile sculptures and many antique Rolls-Royce items.
The auction begins at 10 a.m. For more information, visit glenmoorgathering.com.