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1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, World’s Most Expensive Car, Rings in at $35 Million

Classic car collectors may need to catch their collective breath – a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO has just sold for $35 million, making it the most expensive car ever.
It seems that the market for classic Ferraris of a collectable nature is pretty hot. The GTO’s transaction was completed through a private sale – versus through an auction house – and cost U.S.-based collector Craig McCaw a cool $35 million to take it off the hands of Dutch businessman Eric Heerema. The Ferrari is one of just 39 250 GTOs built between 1962 and 1964, is painted in a bright green apple hue, and was originally made for famed racing driver Sir Stirling Moss.
“The market is very active at the moment,” James Cottingham, an acquisition consultant for a Ferrari dealer in the U.K., told Bloomberg. “A lot of new buyers are expanding their collections and the baby-boomer generation of collectors has reached an age when they’re not using their cars as much as they used to. They want to sell.”
According to Bloomberg, a Ferrari 250 GTO bought by U.K. television and radio host Chris Evans for $18 million has just resold for a price north of $20 million. Similarly, Heerema bought the GTO that sold for $35 million for just $3.5 million in 1996; adjusted for inflation, that is still around $5.1 million in 2012 dollars. Earlier this year, a 250 GTO with chassis number 5095 was sold in the U.K. for around $32 million, Bloomberg says.
Helping to reach the record-breaking price tag is the fact that the GTO in question is not only ran in the 1962 Le Mans race (piloted by Moss’ fellow team driver Innes Ireland), but also has Moss’ signature scrawled across the rear of the passenger seat. The $35 million Ferrari is also 250 GTO chassis number 3505.
The previous record for the most expensive car had been held by a 1936 Type 57SC Bugatti Atlantic. American collector Peter Mullin purchased the pre-war Bugatti through a private transaction and declined to name the exact amount he paid for the car; however, Bloomberg estimates that it was between $30 million and $34 million.
Source: Bloomberg