For car collectors, price is rarely an issue when it comes to their most sought-after vehicles. Which is why throughout the years there have been frequent reports citing blockbuster purchases of rare cars, prices typically in the multi-millions.
However, very few car collectors can claim to have bought the most expensive vehicle to ever be traded in a public auction.
That accolade now rests squarely in the hands of an anonymous investor who recently purchased a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO at auction through Bonhams for $34.65 million this past August.
Previously acquired through a liquidation sale, the Ferrari is one of only 36 of its kind in the world, and beat a record sale made last year in which a Mercedes-Benz Racer was sold for $31.6 million.
The vehicle’s storied past includes a fatal crash in ’62–the year it was manufactured–in which racer Henri Oreiller was killed. As of today, this is the only version of the GTO known to have been in a crash of any kind. While some believed this would hurt the 52-year-old Ferraris value, the recent auction proved speculators wrong.
Manufactured to be the dominant race car of the 1960’s, the GTO has been considered the crown jewel of the car collecting scene for some time now. This particular GTO was originally delivered to French racing driver Jo Schlesser. After the crash, the car was renovated and sold to Italian car buff Fabrizio Violati who raced it in various European competitions for over 40 years, touting the vehicle as one of the most iconic pieces in his renowned “Maranello Rosso Collection” Ferrari museum.
Upon his death in 2010, though, Violati’s family sold the collection to a group of investor’s for over $100 million. From there, the GTO was put up for auction at the Pebble Beach Concourse d’Elegance, prompting the blockbuster purchase.