The most-expensive cars sold thus far in 2018 at public auction were a Ferrari 275 GTB Special, a Porsche 550A Spyder, a McLaren-Cosworth MP4 Formula 1 Racer, a Ferrari 500 Mondial and three Bugattis: a Chiron, Type 55 Roadster and a Type 57C Atalante Coupé.
The top price paid for a car at public auction thus far in 2018 was $8,085,000 for a 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale that was a one-off for Battista Pininfarina. The second most-expensive car in 2018 was a 1958 Porsche 55A Spyder that finished Le Mans fifth overall as a works entry and sold for $5,170,000. the 1993 McLaren-Cosworth Ford MP4 that Ayrton Senna drove to his record sixth Monaco Grand Prix victory sold for $5,009,000. A 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Series 1 sold for $4,455,000. A 1931 Bugatti Type 55 Roadster at $4,070,000 is the most-expensive pre-war car thus far in 2018.
Lists of the Top Ten Most-Expensive Cars in 2018 (January to May)
The 10 highest results achieved for cars sold at public auction thus far in 2018 were:
|Year||Car||Price ($)||Auction House||Auction|
|1965||Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale||8,085,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|1958||Porsche 550A Spyder||5,170,000||Bonhams||Scottsdale|
|1993||McLaren-Cosworth Ford MP4/8A Formula 1||5,009,266||Bonhams||Monaco|
|1954||Ferrari 500 Mondial Series I||4,455,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|2017||Bugatti Chiron||4,088,212||RM Sotheby’s||Paris|
|1931||Bugatti Type 55 Roadster||4,070,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|1938||Bugatti Type 57C Coupe Atalante||3,557,376||Artcurial||Paris|
|1954||Maserati A6 GCS/35 Spyder||2,983,632||Artcurial||Paris|
|1966||Shelby 427 Cobra “Semi-Competition”*||2,947,500||RM Sotheby’s||Arizona|
*An 11th car was added as the LaFerrari was a post-hammer deal.
The Ten Most-Expensive Cars of 2018 (January to May)
1965 Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale
A new record for a steel-bodied 275 GTB was set when the 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale, chassis 06437, sold for $8,085,000 as the top result at the Gooding Scottsdale 2018 sale. It was also the highest price paid for any car at the 2018 Scottsdale, Arizona, classic car auction series.
This 275 was built by Carrozzeria Pininfarina for the personal use of Battista Pininfarina. Although the car largely resembles the standard 275, it differs in almost all details from the regular cars. The most noticeable differences include a rear diffusor and the lack of a driver’s-side vent window. Pinin Farina apparently disliked vent windows as distracting from the purity of the design. The more luxurious interior is also unique to the car.
1958 Porsche 550A Spyder Works Racer
The top result at the Bonhams Scottsdale 2018 sale was for the 1958 Porsche 550A Spyder, chassis 0145, that sold for $5,170,000.
This 1958 Porsche 550A Spyder was the second last of 40 produced but its claim to fame is being a works entry that finished second in class and a magnificent fifth overall at the 24 Hours of Le Mans race. This 550A was an official Porsche Works entry and driven by its owner Carel Godin de Beaufort to the best result ever for a 550 at Le Mans. The 1958 Porsche 550 A Spyder was also a class winner at the Nürburgring 1000 km. It was also raced at the 12 Hours of Reims, the Zandvoort NAV race and at the Dutch Grand Prix. More recently it participated in ten consecutive Mille Miglia Storica races.
1993 McLaren-Cosworth Ford MP4/8A Formula 1 Single Seater
The top result at the Bonhams Monaco 2018 sale was €4,197,500 ($5,009,296) paid for the 1993 McLaren-Cosworth Ford MP4/8A Formula 1 Single Seater that Ayrton Senna raced to his record sixth win at the Monaco Grand Prix.
Senna drove this chassis to victory at the 1993 Monaco Grand Prix and the car as sold is in working condition with the engine and gearbox used at the Monaco race. Senna also raced this chassis at the Spanish, Canadian, British, German, Belgian and Italian Grand Prix races.
1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Series I
A 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Series 1 sold for $4,455,000 at the Gooding Scottsdale 2018 sale.
The original owner Herman Roosdorp and the second owner Hans Maasland successfully campaigned the 500 Mondial at numerous races in 1954 and 1956 especially in the Netherlands and Belgium.
2017 Bugatti Chiron
A 2017 Bugatti Chiron sold for a model record $4,088,212 at the RM Sotheby’s Paris 2018 sale. This was the third Chiron offered at auction in two months and only the second to have sold. The first Chiron sold at auction was a brand new, never registered US specification car that RM Sotheby’s sold for $3,772,500 in New York in December 2017.
The Bugatti Chiron sold in Paris was a European specification model and has already covered 1,000 km. It is one of the first 20 Chirons built, out of a scheduled production run of 500 in seven years.
1931 Bugatti Type 55 Roadster
A 1931 Bugatti Type 55 Roadster sold for $4,070,000 at the Gooding Scottsdale 2018 sale. This car was the first Type 55 produced and had a unique Jean Bugatti roadster coachwork – unfortunately the current body is a reproduction.
The Type 55 was for years in the Dr Peter and Susan Williamson Bugatti Collection and was sold for $1,760,000 at the 2008 Gooding Pebble Beach sale.
1938 Bugatti Type 57C Coupé Atalante
Artcurial’s top result at the Paris Rétromobile 2018 sale was $3,557,376 for a 1938 Bugatti Type 57C Coupé Atalante, a new model auction record.
This car was the 25th of only 34 Atalantes built on the Bugatti 57 and 57C chassis. It was shown at the 1938 Geneva Auto Salon and maintained its original aluminum coachwork and engine to which Bugatti fitted a supercharger in 1952.
2015 Ferrari LaFerrari
A bright yellow 2015 Ferrari LaFerrari sold for $3,410,000 as the top result of the Mecum Kissimmee, Florida, 2018 collector car auction. It was one of 120 LaFerraris produced in US specification. The post-hammer deal resulted in a fair but not particularly high price for a LaFerrari especially given the fairly low 317 miles on the clock.
In the same auction, a 2018 Bugatti Chiron received a highest bid of $3.5 million that was rejected.
2006 Ferrari FXX
A 2006 Ferrari FXX at $3,277,000 was the top result at the Artcurial Rétromobile week auction in Paris after the Le Mans-winning 1963 Ferrari 250 / 275P was withdrawn two weeks before the sale and the 1958 Ferrari 250 GT Series 1 Cabriolet failed to reach the reserve.
Ferrari built only 38 FXX cars for private clients but the buyer of this car preferred not to participate in the racing program. The car has covered only 100 km since new with sixth gear never engaged. The price realised set a new auction model record.
1954 Maserati A6 GCS/53 Spyder
Another model record was set at Artcurial’s Paris Rétromobile sale when a 1954 Maserati A6 GCS/53 Spyder with coachwork by Fiandri and Malagoli sold for $2,983,632. This Maserati is one of only 60 examples built.
Despite being enthusiastically raced by its early owners, including participating in the 1955 Mille Miglia, the Maserati retained its original engine and most of its original body and mechanical components.
1966 Shelby 427 Cobra “Semi-Competition”
The 1966 Shelby 427 Cobra “Semi-Competition” roadster, chassis CSX3040, achieved $2,942,500 as the top result at the RM Sotheby’s Arizona 2018 classic car auction. This was half a million dollar above upper estimate and one of the highest prices ever paid for a Shelby.
This Shelby 427 Cobra Semi-Competition is one of a limited high-performance cars produced for road use after Shelby failed to produce enough cars in time for FIA homologation purposes. It was professionally restored and is considered an exceptionally original and authentic matching numbers car.
Million-Dollar Cars at Public Auctions in 2018
Thus far in 2018 (6 June), at least* 84 cars were sold at public auctions for over a million dollars. (*Definitions vary, results include auction premium.)
- January 2018: 35 – 2 at Kissimmee (Mecum), 33 at Scottsdale, Arizona (12 Gooding, 9 RM Sotheby’s, 7 Bonhams, 5 Barrett-Jackson)
- February 2018: 12 – 12 at Paris Rétromobile (7 Artcurial, 5 RM Sotheby’s)
- March 2018: 22 – 22 at Amelia Island (14 Gooding, 7 RM Sotheby’s, 1 Bonhams)
- April 2018: 2 – 2 at Fort Lauderdale (2 RM Sotheby’s)
- May 2018: 10 – 9 at Monaco (6 RM Sotheby’s, 3 Bonhams), 1 at Indianapolis (1 Mecum)
- June 2018: 2 – 1 at Aston Martin (Bonhams), 1 at Greenwich (Bonhams)
In the battle of the classic car auction houses:
The list takes the published results of the following auctions into consideration:
- January 2018: Kissimmee (Mecum), Scottsdale Arizona (Barrett-Jackson, Bonhams, Gooding, RM Sotheby’s, Russo and Steele, Silver Auctions, Worldwide Auctioneers)
- February 2018: Paris Rétromobile Week (Artcurial, Bonhams, RM Sotheby’s)
- March 2018: Amelia Island (Bonhams, Gooding, RM Sotheby’s, )Goodwood Members (Bonhams)
- April 2018: Fort Lauderdale (RM Sotheby’s), Paris (Artcurial)
- May 2018: Auburn Spring (RM Sotheby’s), Monaco (Bonhams, RM Sotheby’s), Indianapolis (Mecum)
- June 2018: Aston Martin (Bonhams), Greenwich (Bonhams)
The next major classic car auctions include:
- June 2018: Den Hartogh (Bonhams)
- July 2018: Le Mans Classics (Artcurial), Goodwood Festival of Speed (Bonhams)
- August 2018: Monterey Week: Monterey (RM Sotheby’s, Mecum), Quail Lodge (Bonhams), Pebble Beach (Gooding); Auburn Fall (RM Sotheby’s)
- September 2018: Beaulieu (Bonhams), Goodwood Revival (Bonhams)
- October 2018: Zoute (Bonhams), Simeone (Bonhams), Atlanta (RM Sotheby’s Porsche Sale), Padua (Bonhams)
- November 2018: London to Brighton Run (Bonhams)
- December 2018: London (Bonhams)
- Top-Ten Lists for 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 & all time.
- $10 Million Plus – The Most-Expensive Cars of All Time