Argentina: Solid-Gold Car Sale

To the big cow barn in Buenos Aires' Rural Association fairground last week flocked the elite of Argentina: society women in Paris gowns, high-booted cattle ranchers, pin-striped nouveaux riches. On a raised runway in the middle of the barn, a professional auctioneer commanded all attention. At the rate of 72 a day—one every seven minutes during three sessions daily—the auctioneer sold new 1961 autos from Europe and Detroit. In the frantic bidding, a Fiat went for $7,000, a Ford station wagon for $15,000, a Buick for $23,000, a Cadillac for an incredible...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!