- Words and photos by Mitchell Weitzman

Barrett-Jackson - The World's Greatest Auction?

Photo highlights from this summer's Las Vegas auction. With Houston this weekend, what makes Barrett-Jackson the entertaining spectacle it is?

5w ago

Car auctions don't have to be boring. Sure, the cars can be interesting, but what makes an auction a SHOW goes far beyond just the metal on stage. You have to have energy and charisma, keeping action going and going. This is a televised event with thousands upon thousands of viewers during each auction weekend after all, without excitement, who would want to watch?

Leave it to the talented crew of television personalities providing commentary, and auctioneers giving livewire performances as if they've each downed a case of Red Bull. Hundreds of cars are sold each day, filling an entire convention center, from modest dailies that you can buy for under $10,000 even, to collector supercars over $1,000,000. As you can tell, it really is the people that make auction like Barrett-Jackson special, both upfront for the audience and behind the scenes that help make this show happen. When photographing the Vegas event, I found the people to be the more interesting aspect and loved capturing the intensity and emotion of these talented auctioneers.

This weekend, from 9/16 - 9/18, Barrett-Jackson will be in Houston, Texas before heading to both Palm Beach and Scottsdale. You can tune into the action yourself here on Barrett-Jackson.com.

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Comments (26)

  • I couldn't imagine how many hours I would spend talking cars with Steve Magnante (the announcer with the thick frame glasses). As it is he as a show on the Motor Trend app where he builds and customizes models to look like the historical car he is discussing on that episode (he used to do Roadkill's Junkyard Gold too).

      1 month ago
    • He lives a couple towns over and met him once through mutual acquaintance/friend. As down to earth and cool as he seems on tv. Encyclopedic.

        1 month ago
    • I kind of figured that, he seems to have that kind of personality.

        1 month ago
  • Nice pics! I think the auctions give the owners a sense of "my car is worth way more than it actually is and should be priced that way" but overall it is good fun.

      1 month ago
    • Some cars do oversell by quite a bit, but often there are plenty that undersell, too. That’s when you get the serial flippers buying them haha

        1 month ago
  • I attended the Scottsdale auction a few years ago and it was a great time. Spent 8 hours with my wife just walking around and seeing all the cars and outside stuff. It’s much more than an auction, it’s a whole lifestyle event with lots of vendors for almost everything automotive and leisure. I can’t wait to go back sometime.

      1 month ago
  • Mike Joy and Steve Magnate are spectacular. Even with customs, they find a way to teach you about the original car and it’s characteristics. Certainly send Barrett Jackson up the ranks. Although Mecum typically has better cars (imo) most don’t sell and the only guy who really seems to know his stuff is John.

      1 month ago
  • If size is the traditional perspective this country judges by then B/J and fans probably agree. They certainly move lots of good to higher metal with the occasional blue chip. However, “World’s Greatest”? That’s subject. In order to be even considered for such moniker, an automotive auction needs to move blue chip vehicles on a much more regular basis. IMO.

      1 month ago