Who could forget the FIA GT racing series as it existed in the late 1990s? The FIA had mandated that its top-spec GT1 sports car racing class would again go back to a homologation formula, requiring 25 passenger cars to provide a road-relevant basis for any FIA GT1 race entry. The results were stunning, including such incredible supercars as the McLaren F1, the Porsche 911 GT1 and of course, the Mercedes-Benz AMG CLK GTR, the latter of which RM Sotheby’s will be offering at its 2018 Monterey auction.
The CLK GTR race cars won their debut 1997 season (and the succeeding CLK LM, with redesigned bodywork and a new V-8 engine won the 1998 season as well), and the homologation special on offer by RM Sotheby’s is number nine of just 25 cars to have been built to road-going spec. Little was changed from race car to street machine, with essentially the same 6.9-liter V-12 engine and six-speed sequential gearbox sitting amidships in the CLK GTR’s chassis, but the interior having been fitted with leather-covered seats and air conditioning to make it just that much more livable. Road versions of the CLK GTR also got ABS, slightly restyled bodywork, as well as luggage bins under each door. The exterior lighting were virtually the only shared components with the standard production CLK.
This car, chassis 09/25, was first sold in Germany, exported to Hong Kong, and is now in the U.S. under Federal Show and Display regulations that prohibit the car to be used only for public show-type events, with federalization having been completed earlier this year. The car has new fuel bladders and has fewer than 900 miles showing from new, and retains its original paint and mechanicals. Whether the low mileage is an attempt to keep the car’s value high or simply a lesson in the practicalities of using such an extreme car on the road, is unknown. The car comes with its original AMG SPS tool chest, original owners manuals and service booklets, spare keys and the all-important first aid kit, along with the factory-fitted air compressor, safety triangle and torque wrench fitted for road-side flat repairs.
RM Sotheby’s estimates the CLK GTR will fetch between $4.25 and $5.25 million when it crosses the block in Monterey this August.