Ferrari 250 GTO could become world’s most expensive auto

Marco Green
June 23, 2018

The vehicle is being offered by RM Sotheby's, which estimated it at more than $65.57 million, the highest valuation ever for a vintage auto at auction.

This model was the third vehicle off the line at the Ferrari factory in 1962, and it enjoyed a more than stellar racing career, winning the 1962 Italian National GT Championship once and the Targa Florio twice.

Only 36 were made between 1962 and 1964, and if you wanted to spend $US18,000 on a brand new one at the time, Enzo Ferrari himself had to approve of you as the buyer.

Ferrari's 250 GTO was effectively the final evolution of the marque's famous 250 model, which debuted in 1953 and ended with the last GTOs in 1964. It also has racing pedigree. Widely considered the most attractive Ferrari design, the model was one of the most successful road/racing cars that the marque ever built, claiming overall victory or 1st in class in almost 300 races worldwide.

RM Sotheby's will auction the car-the third one made, chassis and engine number 3413-at its event in Monterey, California, on August 24- 25. Chassis No. 3413 GT was first test driven by Phil Hill in the 1962 Targa Florio road race before being passed on to Italian gentlemean racer Edoardo Lualdi-Gabardi.

Lualdi-Gabardi acquired a second GTO the following year and subsequently sold 3413 to Gianni Bulgari, under whose ownership the auto won its class at the 1963 and '64 Targa Florio.

If you're anxious, it hasn't been bogged up. The vehicle was in 20 races, and it always finished and was never crashed.

A Sotheby's spokeswoman declined to say how much Whitten paid for the vehicle, but added that the market for such Ferraris was about $10 million or less in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Everyone has their own favourite, of course, but when it comes to the auto that can stake the best claim to holding the unwavering admiration of enthusiasts, the Ferrari 250 GTO stands alone.

Dr Whitten is putting it up for auction through Sotheby's, who have set a guide price "in excess of $45 million" (£35m).

At the time, leading Ferrari historian Marcel Massini told Fox News he was "confident a GTO would be sold for $US100 million within five years".

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