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1962 Scaglietti-bodied Ferrari 250 GTO tipped to be world's most expensive car

Published: 30 July 2018

► Could this be a record-breaker?
► 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO at auction
► Tipped to raise $45m at Monterey

This rare Ferrari 250 GTO rebodied by fabled coachbuilder Scaglietti is tipped to become the most expensive car ever auctioned, with a pre-sale estimate of $45-60 million (£34m-46m) when it goes under the hammer at RM Sotheby’s Monterey auction in California on 25 August 2018.

See our list of the most expensive cars sold at auction

It is the final evolution of the 250 series; between 1962-4 just 36 examples of the 250 GTO were built, all surviving to this day. This chassis number 3413 was the third GTO ever built and is one of only four to be rebodied in period by Scaglietti.

Just four 250 GTOs were rebodied by Scaglietti and it competed extensively across Europe, notching up more than 15 class and overall victories. This GTO was raced by world renowned drivers such as Edoardo Lualdi-Gabardi who drove to victory in the 1962 Italian GT Championship. Later, Corrado Ferlaino and Luigi Taramazzo were first in class at the 1964 Targo Florio. 

World's most expensive car? Ferrari 250 GTO by Scaglietti

RM Sotheby’s says: 'This was the last car that you could park in your garage, drive to the track, win the race, and then drive home.'

What are the world’s most valuable cars?

Another GTO, a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta, sold in 2014 for a record $38,115,000 (£22,528,626) at the prestigious Bonhams Quail Lodge Auction held during Monterey Car Week in 2014. That record has yet to be surpassed.

At a stroke, it became the most valuable car in the world, overtaking the 1954 Mercedes W196 R F1 Racer which sold for $30m at an auction at the 2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed. 

Tellingly, 16 of the top 25 most expensive cars ever sold at auction were Ferraris (see our list below). Rare Aston Martins, Jaguars, Alfa Romeos, a McLaren and even a Ford GT40 are peppered throughout the most valuable cars.

The most expensive cars ever sold at auction

We've worked with our classic car sister titles and auctions experts to compile this list of the most expensive cars:

  1. 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta $38,115,000 (Bonhams Quail Lodge Auction 2014)
  2. 1957 Ferrari 335 Sport Scaglietti $35,700,000 (Artcurial Paris 2016)
  3. 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196 $29,605,000 (Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed 2013)
  4. 1956 Ferrari 290 MM $28,050,000 (RM Sotheby's, New York City 2015)
  5. 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider $27,500,000 (RM Auctions, Monterey 2013)
  6. 1964 Ferrari 275 GTB/C Speciale by Scaglietti $26,400,000 (RM Sotheby's, Monterey 2014
  7. 1956 Aston Martin DBR1 $22,550,000 (RM Sotheby's, Monterey 2017)
  8. 1955 Jaguar D-type $21,780,000 (RM Sotheby's, Monterey 2016)
  9. 1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Lungo Spider by Touring $19,800,000 (RM Sotheby's, Monterey 2016)
  10. 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider $18,500,000 (Arcturial, Paris 2015)
  11. 1954 Ferrari 375-Plus Spider Competizione $18,400,177 (Bonhams, Goodwood Festival of Speed 2014)
  12. 1964 Ferrari 250 LM $17,600,000 (RM Sotheby's, Monterey 2015)
  13. 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider $16,830,000 (Gooding & Co, Pebble Beach 2015)
  14. 1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Speciale $16,500,000 (Gooding & Co, Pebble Beach 2015)
  15. 1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa prototype $16,390,000 (Gooding and co, Pebble Beach 2013)
  16. 1995 McLaren F1 $15,620,000 (Bonhams, Quail 2017)
  17. 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider $15,180,000 (Gooding & Co, Pebble Beach 2014)
  18. 1964 Ferrari 250 LM $14,300,000 (RM Sotheby's, New York 2013)
  19. 1962 Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato $14,300,000 (RM Sotheby's, New York 2015)
  20. 1953 Ferrari 340/375 MM Berlinetta Competizione $12,745,500  (RM Auctions, Italy 2013)
  21. 1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa $12,402,500 (RM Auctions, Maranello 2009)
  22. 1936 Mercedes-Benz 540K Special Roadster $11,770,000 (Gooding and co, Pebble Beach 2012)
  23. 1960 250 GT LWB California Spider Competizione $11,275,000 (Gooding and co, Pebble Beach 2012)
  24. 1968 Ford GT40 Gulf $11,000,000 (RM Auctions, Monterey 2012)
  25. 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider $10,894,000 (RM Auctions, Maranello 2008)

Classic car values boom - or bust?

Values of significant cars continue to rise and signs are that speculators are viewing rare and exalted cars as an investment vehicle. Could the boom years be back? And is it sustainable?

Be sure to sound off in our comments below!

By Yolanda Kennedy and Tim Pollard

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