The most-expensive cars sold thus far in 2018 at public auction were an Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato, a Ferrari 275 GTB Special, an Alfa Romeo Tipo B Grand Prix Monoposto and a Porsche 550A Spyder.
The top price paid for a car at public auction thus far in 2018 was $13,315,899 for a 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato at the Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed sale. The second most-expensive car in 2018 sold for $8,085,000 – a 1965 Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale that was a one-off for Battista Pininfarina. A classic ex-Scuderia Ferrari 1932 Alfa Romeo Tipo B Grand Prix Monoposto was the third most-expensive car while the fourth place is taken by a 1958 Porsche 55A Spyder that finished Le Mans fifth overall as a works entry. John Surtees 1957 BMW 507 Roadster set a new model record at just over $5 million – just a few thousand more than was paid for the 1993 McLaren-Cosworth Ford MP4 that Ayrton Senna drove to his record sixth Monaco Grand Prix victory.
Lists of the Top Ten Most-Expensive Cars in 2018 (January to July)
The 10 highest results achieved for cars sold at public auction thus far in 2018 were:
|Year||Car||Price ($)||Auction House||Auction|
|1||1961||Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato ‘2VEV’||13,315,899||Bonhams||Goodwood|
|2||1965||Ferrari 275 GTB Speciale||8,085,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|3||1932||Alfa Romeo Tipo B Grand Prix Monoposto||6,067,210||Bonhams||Goodwood|
|4||1958||Porsche 550A Spyder||5,170,000||Bonhams||Scottsdale|
|5||1957||BMW 507 Roadster||5,031,683||Bonhams||Goodwood|
|6||1993||McLaren Cosworth Ford MP4/8A Formula 1 Racing Single-Seater||5,009,266||Bonhams||Monaco|
|7||1954||Ferrari 500 Mondial Series I||4,455,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|8||2017||Bugatti Chiron||4,088,212||RM Sotheby’s||Paris|
|9||1931||Bugatti Type 55 Roadster||4,070,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|10||1963||Mercedes Benz 300 SL Roadster||3,709,212||Artcurial||Le Mans|
The Ten Most-Expensive Cars of 2018 (January to June)
1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato ‘2 VEV’
The most-expensive car thus far in 2018 was the 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato, chassis 0183/R, registration number 2 VEV, that sold for $13,315,899 at the Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed sale. The result was the highest price ever paid for a British-made car at a public auction held in the UK and only the fourth result above $10 million ever achieved for a car at a British auction.
The 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato ‘2 VEV’ is one of only 19 cars produced and one of only four built to lightweight specification for racing purposes. John Ogier’s Essex Racing Stable raced two DB4GT Zagatos that became known by their registration plate numbers 1 VEV and 2 VEV. Both cars participated in, and retired from, the 1961 Le Mans 24 Hours race.
See 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato ‘2 VEV’ Announcement for more on this car that had been raced by amongst others Lex Davison and Jim Clark, who crashed it into John Surtees Ferrari 250 GTO.
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.
1932 Alfa-Romeo Tipo B Grand Prix Monoposto
The second highest results at the Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed sale 2018 was $6,067,210 paid for an ex-Scuderia Ferrari 1932-4 Alfa-Romeo Tipo B Grand Prix Monoposto.
Richard-Shuttleworth famously won the 1935 Donington Grand Prix – the first full-distance grand prix race in this 1932 Alfa-Romeo Tipo B Grand Prix Monoposto. An accident in the Alfa in South Africa ended Shuttleworth’s car racing career and he subsequently spent more effort on aviation.
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.
1957 BMW 507 Roadster
A new marque record was set when the 1957 BMW 507 that racing legend John Surtees owned from new until his death in 2017 sold for a sensational $5,031,683 at the Goodwood Festival of Speed sale. The previous record price for this model was set at Pebble Beach 2017 when Gooding sold a superbly restored 1958 BMW 507 Series II Roadster for $2,750,000.
At the time that he acquired the BMW 507 as new in 1957, John Surtees was the reigning 500cc Motorcycle World Champion, having won the first of four titles in 1956 riding for Count Domenico Agusta’s MV Agusta factory team. Augusta paid half of the BMW’s price and Surtees the rest.
Surtees had BMW upgrade the performance a bit and had disc brakes fitted. Surtees kept the BMW, even after Ferrari forced him to buy one of his cars while driving for the factory team. Surtees won the Formula 1 Drivers’ World Championship for Ferrari in 1964.
See John Surtees’ BMW 507 Roadster Announcement for more on this magnificent car.
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.
1963 Mercedes Benz 300 SL Roadster
A new auction world record was set when a 1963 Mercedes Benz 300 SL Roadster sold for $3,709,212 at the Artcurial Le Mans Classic sale. This was $1.7 million more than the previous record paid for such Roadster.
This 300 SL Roadster came from single ownership and more significantly with only 1,380 km on the clock. It belonged to a Swedish dentist who died without heirs and the car was finally sold by the Swedish government to benefit charity.
Million-Dollar Cars at Public Auctions in 2018
Thus far in 2018 (16 August), at least* 94 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)
- July 2018: 9 – 3 at Le Mans (Artcurial), 6 at Goodwood Festival of Speed (Bonhams)
- August 2018: 1 – 1 at Hudson Museum (Worldwide)
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), Den Hartogh (Bonhams)
- July 2018: Le Mans Classics (Artcurial) & Goodwood Festival of Speed (Bonhams)
- August 2018: Hudson Museum (Worldwide)
The next major classic car auctions include:
- August 2018: Monterey Week: Monterey (RM Sotheby’s, Mecum), Quail Lodge (Bonhams), Pebble Beach (Gooding); Auburn Fall (RM Sotheby’s)
- September 2018: London (RM Sotheby’s), 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 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 & all time.
- $10 Million Plus – The Most-Expensive Cars of All Time