LAS VEGAS – Barrett-Jackson was back in town in its best Las Vegas style. The annual collector-car auction filled Mandalay Bay, Sept. 23-25 with every possible dream a car buff could think of.
From four-horse stagecoaches of the Old West to modern-day Mustangs with 500 horsepower, the auction took over one of the crown jewels of Las Vegas. As guests entered the hotel-casino, the walls, ceilings and floors all magically glistened with the Barrett-Jackson logo.
For three days, Barrett-Jackson auctioned off every imaginable ride that a car collector, or just an everyday person, could want if you had enough of a bankroll in your jeans.
The ultimate attraction for local Las Vegans was the Danny Gans collection.
Gans, the celebrated Las Vegas Strip entertainer, was an avid collector who shared his passion for fine, and fun, automobiles.
His three children were present at the auction and his son, Andrew, even brought down the final hammer on each of the sales as he and his siblings watched their father's collection pass through the auction.
Danny Gans' daughter Amy Gans said, "We felt sad to see them just sitting in the garage and felt we should share them with people who also had a passion for them." When asked how it felt to see them cross the block, she said, "We feel an overwhelming love for the cars and for Dad."
Jerry Reynolds, owner of a construction company in Atlanta, purchased the 1969 Camaro for himself and the 2003 Chevrolet Corvette for his wife, Donna. Donna Reynolds was heard telling the Gans family that they could have the vehicles back "anytime."
The Gans children were "happy to let the vehicles go to people who would enjoy them." The entire collection garnered just over $500,000.
The culmination of the auction was the sale of a 2008 Bugatti Veyron, which had touted a manufacturer's suggested retail price in the $1.8 million-plus area, for $770,000 — not too bad for a used car.
Beginning Sept. 18 with the "cruise-in" at Gaudin Ford and running through the entire week, the legendary auto auction company kept the event moving quickly and the energy alive all over town, much like the patter of a good auctioneer.
Prior to the event, Craig Jackson, chairman/CEO of Barrett-Jackson said, "Being back in Las Vegas will be very exciting this year, the third annual Las Vegas auction will be an engaging event filled with more activities scheduled throughout the week for people to participate."
This year, Barrett-Jackson partnered with MGM Resorts International to host various "revved" events, including spa and shopping events, a golf tournament, concerts, a wine auction and car-art exhibits, among other events.
Through its exclusive relationship with Speed TV, the Barrett-Jackson Las Vegas event was televised to a national audience with nearly 22 hours of coverage. Speed broadcast live in high definition from the main auction arena Thursday, Sept. 23, to Saturday, Sept. 25.
A lot of money changed hands at the Barrett-Jackson Auto Auction this past week, but sometimes it's not about the money - it's about the love of a man for his car.