As of June 2018, the most expensive car ever sold went for $70 million in May 2018, but that was between two private individuals. Some very expensive cars, however, have gone across the auction block, and their high prices have surprised even well-established experts with their prices. While there is a quality that no one can name that causes the price of some cars sold at auction to go sky high, a good story, connection to a household name and a model where very few were made certainly helps to drive up prices. Here are some of the most expensive cars ever sold at auction.
1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta- $38,115,000
The most expensive car to sell at auction was the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta with chassis number 3851GT. This car was originally built to be shared between Jo Schlesser and French Resistance World War II hero Henri Oreiller for the duo to race. Unfortunately, Henri Oreiller was killed during his second race in the car that had to be completely rebuilt. Ferrari rebuilt the car, and it went on to win 12 of 14 hill climbs. It was crashed again during the 1964 Coppa Inter-Europa, and Ferrari rebuilt it again. Then, the car went to a private collector who has held onto it for 48 years before it was sold at auction.
1957 Ferrari 335 S Spider Scaglietti- $35,711,359
The 1957 Ferrari 335 S Spider Scaglietti with chassis number 0674 was first driven by Peter Collins and Maurice Trintignant where it finished sixth before being driven by Wolfgang von Trips to a second place finish at Mille Miglia. The car was then returned to the Ferrari factory where its original engine was exchanged for a 3.8-liter V12 before being driven by Mike Hawthorn and Luigi Musso to become the first car to set a lap record of over 200 kilometers per hour. This car was owned by French collector Pierre Bardinon in 1970 to join his collection of over 39 other Ferraris. That was the last time that it was sold until 2014 when it became the highest selling car at auction, but it did not hold that record for long.
1956 Ferrari 290 MM-$ 28,050,000
Chassis 0626 returned the title of World Sportscar Championship to Ferrari after Mercedes-Benz had beat them for several years. This vehicle was specially developed to race in the Mille Miglia, and that is the meaning behind the MM in its name. This car was raced at Nürburgring, Rouen-Les-Essarts, Kristianstad, and in numerous amateur historic car races. Only four of these models were ever constructed by the company, and they have a V12 engine capable of achieving 320 horsepower.
While these three vehicles are the most valuable cars sold at auction as of mid-2018, there is very little doubt that another fabulous vehicle will come along to top them. It will probably take a vehicle with a rich racing history, in good condition and at an auction where the right buyers are present to make that happen.