EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Business

April 21, 2013

Texan's vintage car collection could net $14M

FORT WORTH, Texas — They are immaculately preserved slices of automobile history — 64 of them — each with a story to tell.

For many of the Ferraris, Corvettes and other cars in Don Davis’ collection, the history is as spectacular as the polish on the hood.

And soon they will all be driven away by the highest bidder.

Davis, a real estate investor and founder of several Fort Worth-Arlington car dealerships that still bear his name, plans to sell much of his vintage car collection during a single-day auction April 27 in west Fort Worth.

“I’m reducing my collection,” Davis said in an interview at a nondescript building where he houses the cars. “It’s just too much trouble to take care of them.”

The sale, which will be open only to those who pay a $150 registration fee, is being handled by RM Auctions of Ontario, Canada.

In all, the auction could fetch up to $14 million, a car specialist at RM Auctions said.

For those who aren’t in the market for a six- or seven-figure car but want to see what one looks like up close, a preview of the vehicles will be held April 26. Those who wish to attend the preview can buy an $80 auction catalog, which includes two admissions.

Davis’ veritable museum includes a 1958 Dual Giah convertible, the epitome of a four-wheel Hollywood status symbol that was owned by composer and jazz musician Hoagy Carmichael.

Carmichael wrote some of the most memorable songs of the 20th century, including “Stardust” and “Georgia on My Mind.”

There’s also a 1966 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray 427/425 Big Tank Coupe originally equipped with a 450-horsepower engine, which was downgraded to 425 horsepower to placate the insurance industry’s fears about its speed. (According to the auction’s glossy catalog, the change was mostly a paperwork alteration, and the engine is still capable of 450 horses.)

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