This classic 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta, once involved in a fatal accident, has just smashed the record for being the most expensive car ever sold publicly at auction.
The car was “snapped up” for an incredible $38.1 million (£22.85 million) by an undisclosed telephone bidder at Bonhams’ Auction House in California, during the world renowned Monterey Car Week on Thursday 14th August 2014.
The Ferrari GTO dominated the Grand Touring Car racing class between 1962 and 1964. When they were first launched, the GTO cost $18,000, but buyers had to be personally approved by Enzo Ferrari himself before they were allowed to purchase one.
Ferrari made 36 cars between1962 and 1963. In 1964 ‘Series II’ was introduced, which had a slightly different look. Three such cars were made, and four older ‘Series I’ were given a ‘Series II’ body bringing the total number of GTOs produced to 39. Ferrari GTOs rarely come up for sale, and when they do they often trade in secret (this was the first one to be sold at auction in almost 25 years). The rarity of the GTO has earned it the reputation of being the “holy grail” of collectable cars. So the somewhat dark past of this stunning, record-breaking vehicle did nothing to detract from its appeal – in 1962 Olympic skiing champion Henri Oreiller was killed in the car while doing over 100mph!
There are rumours in the automotive industry which claim that in May 2012 the 1962 250 GTO made for Stirling Moss became the world’s most expensive car, selling in a private transaction for $35 million to American communications magnate Craig McCaw. In October 2013, Connecticut-based collector Paul Pappalardo reputedly sold chassis number 5111GT to an unnamed buyer for a new record of $52 million. Yet as neither of these prices can be officially verified by public records, they are not eligible for the world record.
The new undisclosed telephone buyer will join fashion designer Ralph Lauren, Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason, former Microsoft President Jon Shirley and JCB boss Anthony Bamford as the latest member of the exclusive GTO owner’s club. Discover more of H.R. Owens stunning range of New Ferrari and Approved Used Ferrari models.