The 17 Most Expensive Cars Sold at Auction

Marvel at these world-record wheels. (And start saving.)

The 17 Most Expensive Cars Sold at Auction

Marvel at these world-record wheels. (And start saving.)

Do you play the lottery? Well, if you want to tool around town in any of the fine automobiles listed below, perhaps you ought to — chances are you don’t have a cool $13 million laying around. Yet. ($13 million is the least expensive item on this list of the most expensive cars ever sold at auction.)

1998 McLaren F1 "LM-Specification"

1998 McLaren F1 “LM-Specification”

The most recently produced car on this list set the record for the world’s fastest production car, reaching 231 mph in March of 1998. Someone with a need for speed and deep pockets snagged one for $13.75 million last August.

1962 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato

1962 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato

Introduced in October 1960 at the London Motor Show, this handsome devil was effectively a DB4 GT lightened and improved by the Zagato factory in Italy. Initially, the factory had plans to produce 25 cars, but demand wasn’t as strong as expected, and production ceased at the 20th unit. That’s partly why one changed hands for $14.3 million last December.

1964 Ferrari 250 LM

1964 Ferrari 250 LM

This car was the ninth of just 32 made, and it was the last Ferrari to be the overall winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, having been driven to victory in 1965 by Jochen Rindt, Masten Gregory and American driver Ed Hugus. In November of 2013, this one sold for $14.3 million.

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

This was Ferrari’s most successful early model, built between 1953 and 1964. A fiberglass-bodied replica of a 1961 250 GT Spyder California, based on an MG, was featured in the 1986 film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Remember how distraught Cameron was when his father’s pride and joy sailed through the garage and into the woods? Perhaps he foresaw that in 2014 someone would pay $15.1 million for it.

1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa

1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa

These iconic autos dominated their competitors in the 1950s and early 1960s — variations won 10 World Sports Car Championship races, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1958, 1960, and 1961; the Sebring 12 Hours in 1958, 1959 and 1961; and the Buenos Aires 1000Km in 1958 and 1960. These results led to World Sports Car Championship titles in 1958, 1960 and 1961. In August of 2011, one sold at auction for nearly $16.4 million.

1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Speciale

1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Speciale

In 1962, Nuccio Bertone wanted to build the ultimate Ferrari, so he chose Giorgetto Giugiaro, a rookie designer at Carrozzeria Bertone, to help him do it. The result was this one-of-a-kind Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta Speciale. Want one? Better dig deep. Last year, one sold for $16.5 million.

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

It’s one of just 56 ever made (and only 37 with those desirable covered headlights). It sold at Pebble Beach in 2015 for $16.8 million.

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

This Spider went under the hammer just seven months later and fetched $17.16 million.
1964 Ferrari 250 LM

1964 Ferrari 250 LM

Another one of these. It sold for $17.6 million.

1954 Ferrari 375-Plus Spider Competizione

1954 Ferrari 375-Plus Spider Competizione

Perhaps the best-known 375 MM is the “Ingrid Bergman” version, commissioned in 1954 by director Roberto Rossellini for his famed-actress wife. It would have cost Rossellini a pretty penny, though only a tiny fraction of what it raised at auction in June of 2014: $18.4 million.

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spider

Yet another Ferris Bueller mobile, and the most expensive to be sold at auction so far. In February 2016, someone snapped one up for $18.5 million. Chick-a-chick-ahhhhh.

1964 Ferrari 275 GTB/C Speciale

1964 Ferrari 275 GTB C Speciale

The 275 GTB/C Speciale is a two-seat front-engined Gran Turismo automobile produced by Ferrari between 1964 and 1968. (It was the first Ferrari to be equipped with a transaxle, should that mean anything to you.) In August 2014 one of these was bought for $26.4 million.

1967 GTB/4 N.A.R.T. Spyder

1967 GTB 4 N.A.R.T. Spyder

In 1967, you could only buy a 275 GTB/4 N.A.R.T. Spyder from one guy: American dealer Luigi Chinetti. He asked Sergio Scaglietti and Enzo Ferrari to build 25 convertible Spyders, which he snapped up for approximately $8,000 each. (N.A.R.T. stood for Chinetti’s North American Racing Team). However, poor sales meant that only 10 were made. So people weren’t too surprised when one sold for $27.5 million in 2013.

1956 Ferrari 290 MM

1956 Ferrari 290 MM

Produced in 1956, the MM was developed to compete in the 1956 edition of Mille Miglia, an open-road endurance race which took place in Italy 24 times from 1927 to 1957. (That’s where the acronym “MM” comes from). One of these beauties sold at Sotheby’s for $28 million in December 2015.

1954 Mercedes-Benz W196

1954 Mercedes-Benz W196

This hot little number was a Formula One racing car made by Mercedes-Benz for the 1954 and 1955 F1 seasons. It won 9 of 12 races entered and the only two world championships in which it competed. In 2013, one fetched $29.6 million at auction in the UK.

1957 Ferrari 335S

1957 Ferrari 335S

Earlier this year, one of the four Ferrari 335S models ever made sold in Paris for an ungodly $35.7 million. Once upgraded to a 4.1-litre engine, this storied vehicle set the lap record at Le Mans, finished 4th in the Swedish Grand Prix and 2nd in the Venezuelan Grand Prix P. Finally it won the 1958 Cuban Grand Prix driven by Stirling Moss. The new owner is Argentine soccer star and recently charged evader of Spanish taxes Lionel Messi.

1962 Ferrari 250 GTO

1962 Ferrari 250 GTO

Two years ago, the most expensive car in the in the world went under the hammer. You could pick up a Ferrari 250 GTO for $18,500 in 1962, about four times what the average American made that year. In August of 2014, one was snapped up for a princely $38.1 million, or roughly 850 times what the average American makes today.

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