Barrett-Jackson Auto Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona

Odometer (Legend):  528,535


Odometer (ILX):  64,779


I had to chuckle when I saw this picture posted on Facebook today:


Well, it wasn’t even 50 years old, but I’ve already restored a Honda product.  I brought a 25-year-old Acura Legend back to life just a couple months ago.  Feast your eyes on some before-after goodness:


How’d I get the engine bay so clean?  It took time, elbow grease, and a toothbrush.


I thought I was doing well to sell that “collector” low-mileage 1988 Acura Legend coupe for $3,000.  But it’s a whole different ballgame to watch a vehicle being sold for 100 or even 1,000 times that price.  As part of this past weekend’s festivities, some friends and I went to the Barrett-Jackson Auto Auction.  B-J dates back to 1971 is one of several premiere car auctions held in the Scottsdale, Arizona area each January.

I wanted to quickly share a few pictures here from the heat of the action during our visit last Saturday.  Entry tickets – even just for spectators – go for $60 each at the gate, but my friend David who works there got us in for free-ninety-nine.


Let’s go!


Saturday was one of the busiest days in the auction’s 7-day duration.  It was so busy, in fact, that not only was the main parking lot full, but also a couple of the overlow lots.  We ended up stashing the ILX on a grassy soccer field over 4 miles away and taking a shuttle bus to the entrance!


Credentials in-hand, we got ready for the sights & sounds.


Whole lotta bling going on here with this Chevy motor.


This is the main hall where the vehicles are brought up on the auction block.  The folks who are seated in the center of the room are bidders and they have special credentials.  There’s also bidding going on behind-the-scenes.  My friend David works with the Internet team to place bids on behalf of people who are watching the auction online and who wish to make a bid electronically.


Here’s a 12-second taste of what it’s like in that room.

Outside, we were able to wander around and see the hundreds of vehicles which had been (or were yet to be) sold throughout the course of the week.



I quite enjoyed this 1953 Buick Skylark convertible.


One of my favorite things about the cars at B-J was that each one had a very detailed history.  This Corvette Roadster, for example, was a numbers-matching, 2-owner car with only 36,000 miles and complete documentation back to when it was brand new.


Anything goes.  Who would have thought a 1978 Olds Toronado would someday be collectible?  This example had only 5,000 original miles on it.  It was a highly equipped model with lots of factory add-ons.


Each vehicle at the auction has an information sheet in the window which gives the story on the vehicle as well as provides the Sale Number for those who are interested in tracking it.


Row after row of vehicles awaited their fate outside.


The only Acura I saw – and boy, was it a beauty – was this Spa Yellow NSX-T 6-speed manual. It had only 3,000 miles on it!


It went for $56,000.  Cheap for the miles, I say!  Pictured here are Alan, Tia, Matt, and myself.  Tire kickers – none of us had anywhere near the kind of money we would’ve needed to drive home in one of these fine rides.


Matt later sent me a picture of this Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution which was up for auction.  This is the car that was driven by Paul Walker in Fast & Furious 2.


Heading home in my humble $30k ILX after being surrounded by so many great vehicles.


Bon voyage, mom!  I had a great time with her, and hope she comes back to visit again soon!


4 Responses to “Barrett-Jackson Auto Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona”

  1. i’d take your ‘restored’ Legend ANY day over that Toronado! I had no idea it was $60 just to watch B.J. Auction.

    • For some reason I love cars that are “runts.” Like, nobody else wants them, so I do. Maybe that’s why I’ve always been so fascinated with the Acura SLX or the Vigor. Yeah, $60 is too much to spectate. Could watch it on TV for free, I think.

  2. No Legends huh?! Well maybe someday..
    There is an auction here in nj at Atlantic city every year that I have been to a few times. Not as large as Barrett Jackson nor as many unique cars I imagine, but pretty neat nonetheless

    • Yeah, no Legends but I am pretty sure we’ll be seeing some of the low-mileage, rare-option ones (like your coupes) surfacing at auction programs like this not long from now. Clean ones are already commanding a premium on the resale market, much like the original/unmolested NSXs are. If you ever see any Acuras (or anything Honda, for that matter) at that Atlantic City auction you’ll have to let me know.

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