Online auctions remained strong over the past year, bringing increased volume and growth in key specialty areas and an increased interest in “modern classics” from Europe, Asia, and America
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (Jan. 24, 2024) – Automotive auction platform and enthusiast community Bring a Trailer (BaT) has revealed a number of trends and highlights from the collector and enthusiast vehicle market observed across approximately 37,000 auctions in 2023, among them a notable surge in interest and values around early to mid-2000s vehicles, American sports cars, and collectible motorcycles.
Online auctions remained strong, with BaT surpassing $1.4B in sales for the second year in a row. The site also saw its highest volume of listings ever, with an average of between 700 and 800 auctions weekly. In fact, BaT celebrated its 100,000th auction in February 2023 and took just another 10 months to surpass 132,000 auctions in December. The BaT community also continued to grow, and the site saw a 20% increase in registered members in 2023.
“Despite adjustments across the collector car marketplace, the Bring a Trailer community clearly demonstrated a sustained passion for collector and enthusiast vehicles in 2023,” said Randy Nonnenberg, co-founder and president of Bring a Trailer. “We also saw increasing interest beyond four wheels with motorcycles, parts and automobilia, and other categories. Perhaps most significant, though, is the continued commitment of our community to transparency and collective vetting. Those elements lead to positive outcomes for both sellers and buyers, and they remain the foundation of what we do.”
Below are some of the top noteworthy trends from the collector and enthusiast vehicle market in 2023.
Top five sales by price in 2023
Rare, well-presented, and highly desirable vehicles continued to perform well on BaT. 2023 saw the platform’s first Pagani listing, which ultimately became the top sale by price for the year. Three Porsches and a Ford GT rounded out the top five highest sales:
German and American brands lead sales
While American vehicles dominated the top five models sold, German and American marques were nearly split for the top makes sold on BaT in 2023. Porsche led the way, followed by Ford and Chevrolet, respectively. Mercedes-Benz took the fourth spot, narrowly beating BMW in fifth.
American models take four of the five top spots
Among all vehicles listed on BaT in 2023, the Porsche 911 was the most popular model sold across all years and generations. The 911 was followed by the Chevrolet Corvette, and three Fords rounded out the top five models sold: the Mustang, F-Series, and Bronco.
Most popular auctions of 2023
The most popular auctions on BaT in 2023 demonstrate the broad interests of the collector/enthusiast community. The listings–ranked by a combination of views, comments, and bids–spanned supercars, recreational vehicles, and automobilia. The top five were:
- 1974 Ford C-750 Camelot Cruiser Motorhome w/Poloron Snowmobiles
- Slot Mods Porsche 917 Le Mans Slot Car Raceway
- 2002 Nissan Skyline GT-R M-Spec Nür
- 2021 Koenigsegg Regera
- 1990 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Coupe by Singer
Newer vehicles are coming of age
The trend toward the modern classic continued in 2023, with vehicles from the early and mid 2000s dominating auction listings. In order of volume, the most listed model years on BaT in 2023 were 2006, 2004, 2003, 2008, 2005, 2002, 2007, 1969, 1997, and 1967. While traditional classics, hot rods, pre-war cars, and other categories remain popular among collectors, the trend shows a shift in what is considered collectible as more Gen X and Millennial buyers enter the market to obtain cars from their youth.
Two-wheeled and specialty momentum continues
In addition to being the largest auction platform for collector and enthusiast cars, BaT has several growing specialty categories such as off-road vehicles, RVs and campers, and even vintage tractors. The most popular is the motorcycle category, which features everything from rare early-1900s examples to vintage cruisers and modern superbikes. The category is one of the fastest-growing segments on BaT, jumping 45% between 2022 and 2023 alone.
Collectability moves beyond the vehicle
The BaT Parts and Automobilia category has also grown significantly over the past year. The section now houses 30 pages for engines, wheels, tires, bodywork, interior pieces, and other components as well as automobilia such as signs, tool kits, luggage, literature, artwork, timepieces, and more. Parts and Automobilia listings increased a whopping 124% in 2023 over the previous year, demonstrating strong interest in preservation and restoration in addition to an enduring passion for automotive history and culture.
About Bring a Trailer
Bring a Trailer (BaT) is a digital auction platform and enthusiast community founded in 2007 to connect buyers and sellers of classic, collector, and enthusiast vehicles. BaT curates vehicles submitted by sellers and helps them craft transparent auction listings that present the vehicles as they are — without superlatives or dubious used-car-lot language. At the end of a successful auction, BaT connects the seller and buyer so they can work together to complete the transaction. BaT’s knowledgeable community of more than 1,100,000 registered users vets each listing so potential buyers can bid with confidence. BaT auctions are listed at a flat rate, starting at just $99 with a sell-through rate of 77%. Bring a Trailer Shipping is the company’s fully integrated vehicle transport service, available for both BaT auction listings and private vehicles in the contiguous 48 U.S. states. For more information, visit www.bringatrailer.com.