Swiss classic car investment tops Bonhams Paris portfolio

7 Feb 2013, Les Grandes Marques du Monde au Grand Palais

Swiss classic car investment tops Bonhams Paris portfolio

7 Feb 2013, Les Grandes Marques du Monde au Grand Palais

Two classic cars sourced in Switzerland more than double their estimates at Bonhams Grand Palais auction

Two motor cars sourced from the same Switzerland-based collector were among the top lots in the €13 million Bonhams sale at the Grand Palais in Paris on Thursday 7th February, selling for a combined total of €974,050.

Both vehicles were bought new by the late Dr Gentinetta and his wife Lotti, and were housed in Zermatt, Switzerland, until the sale this month. Dr Gentinetta, known for his love of beautiful, fast cars, was also known to have been a little eccentric – he is said to have refused to ever raise the hoods on his cars while driving them, instead keeping an umbrella in a holder by the driver's door for use in the event of a sudden rain shower.

A 1963 Aston Martin DB4 'Series V' Vantage convertible ordered new by Dr Gentinetta to top specification more than doubled its pre-sale estimate to sell for €805,000. With 266bhp, the DB4 was the first production car capable of accelerating from 0 to 100mph and back to rest in less than 30 seconds, a fact that no doubt endeared it to the late Dr Gentinetta.

Meanwhile a 1947 Bentley MkVI Drophead Coupé re-bodied by Swiss Carrosserie Graber with an updated design and delivered new to the family in May 1949 sold for €169,050, well above its €75,000 to €125,000 estimate.

Philip Kantor, Head of the Mainland European Motoring department, said: "We have long considered Switzerland a good source of important motor cars that are well and properly maintained and cared for.

"The €974,000 achieved for Dr Gentinetta's two cars is a fantastic result to come out of what was a very successful sale, and shows the value of cars coming fresh to the market. These cars had not been sold before and, as such, were highly prized and would always have had the potential to realize extraordinary value.

"An auction remains the only way to determine the true value of these sorts of cars, and we are delighted to have achieved such a good result for Dr Gentinetta's family at one of ours."

Anyone interested in consigning a motor car to a Bonhams sale can contact Philip Kantor on +32 476 879 471 or .

For all other consignments the Bonhams office in Geneva is contactable on +41 223 003 160 or


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to

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