Richard Rawlings, the Dallas car customizer best known for his starring role on the Discovery Channel reality show fast and strongsells 25 of its hot rods in a no-reserve auction.
Starting Wednesday, Rawlings will welcome high profile buyers to its Gas Monkey garage to offer live tours of every vehicle sold. The auction ends on September 14. He announced his liquidation plan on his YouTube channel, which has more than 950,000 subscribers.
“I have a different type of collection and different types of cars that I want to research,” Rawlings said in an interview. “I just decided, why not let them all go?” Restart. It’s the pleasure of being in this company.
He’s aiming for a new collection, reinvesting in hot rods with big pedigrees like Mercedes, Ferrari and Lamborghini. His current collection, Rawlings said, is valued at more than $1 million.
The vehicles in Rawlings’ garage are rare – ranging from a “most beautiful hot rod of the year” to a Zimmer Quicksilver. It took him more than 10 years to collect all the cars.
He auctions off his collection with Bring a Trailer, a collector and enthusiast vehicle auction platform. The auction will be streamed live on GasMonkeyGarage.com. Buyers must pre-register for the auction on the Bring a Trailer website, where they will find a full list of vehicle history.
Rawlings’ prized collection includes:
- King T, a custom Ford Model T built by hotrod legend Gene Winfield. It won the Most Beautiful Roadster award at the 1964 Oakland Roadster Show and was later commemorated as both a Hot Wheels car and an MPC model kit. Rawlings said he was going to miss his King T, but the time has come.
- 1965 Ford Mustang Fastback K-Code 5 Speed with a complete renovation by Thoroughbred Restorations of Oklahoma City.
- 1972 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Convertible 6-speed customized by the team at Hot Rods by Dean in Phoenix.
- Easyriders custom chopper commissioned by the founding editor of easyriders magazine, Keith “Bandit” Ball. It was featured in easyriders magazine and in season 16 of Fast and strong.
His auction coincides with the start of the annual Mecum Auctions collector car sale next week at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas. A private collection of over 200 vintage Fords will be one of Mecum’s finest draws.
Rawlings also offers a private tour for four to visit Gas Monkey Garage for a behind-the-scenes experience. All proceeds will benefit the Gas Monkey Foundation, which serves the financially challenged garage industry, veterans, children and seniors.
“I wanted to do it in a way that would show the world that you don’t have to do all those high bidding fees and shoot your cars all over the place,” Rawlings said.
“This is the largest collection from a single owner to be sold at a single auction of its kind,” said Bring a Trailer founder Randy Nonnenberg. “The variety of vehicles on offer really shows how diverse Richard’s collection has become.”
Having the cash on hand, Rawlings said, will make it easier to build her next collection. He said he thinks he’ll be able to pull together a new collection much faster than 10 years.
He also has more than cars.
In October, Rawlings announced it was opening a 40,000 square foot restaurant and venue, Gas Monkey Dallas, at Farmers Branch at Mercer Boardwalk. The restaurant is supposed to be the first of several locations across the country for the new concept, with a location in Las Vegas already in the works.
Rawlings also owns Amplified, at 10261 Technology Blvd. in Dallas, a restaurant and a concert hall. It was formerly known as Gas Monkey Bar N’ Grill, which was at the center of legal battles between Rawlings and the venue’s managing partner as of 2018.
A $6 million lawsuit against Rawlings alleged he defamed his business partners who ran the site and made “deliberate and deceptive attempts” to opt out of his license agreement of the Gas Monkey name to site operators. Rawlings denied the claims and sued for $1 million in 2019, saying the restaurant had been using the Gas Monkey name illegally since it terminated the contract nearly a year earlier.
Rawlings said he’s gotten rid of old management partnerships and owns 100% of his businesses. He plans to partner with bigger brands to grow his businesses.
“I like to work, I’ve always been a worker,” Rawlings said.