A 1994 McLaren F1 ‘LM-specification’ and a 1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta are the two most-expensive cars sold at public auction in 2019.
The ten most-expensive cars sold at public auction in 2019 include five Ferraris but the most-expensive was a 1994 McLaren F1 ‘LM-Specification that sold for $19,805 at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey 2019 sale. The second most-expensive car in 2019 was a 1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900 Touring Berlinetta that achieved $19,257,000 at the Artcurial Paris Retromobile sale. The ten most-expensive cars in 2019 also include a 1965 Ford GT40 Roadster Prototype, a 2014 Lamborghini Veneno Roadster and a Pagani Zonda Aether Roadster.
List of the Top Ten Most-Expensive Cars in 2019 (Full Year)
The 10 highest results achieved for cars sold at public auction in full calendar year 2019 were:
|Year||Car||Price ($)||Auction House||Auction|
|1||1994||McLaren F1 ‘LM-Specification’||19,805,000||RM Sotheby’s||Monterey|
|2||1939||Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta||19,256,750||Artcurial||Paris|
|3||1958||Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider||9,905,000||Gooding||Pebble Beach|
|4||2014||Lamborghini Veneno Roadster||8,337,182||Bonhams||Bonmont|
|5||1962||Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta||8,145,000||RM Sotheby’s||Monterey|
|6||1965||Ford GT40 Roadster Prototype||7,650,000||RM Sotheby’s||Monterey|
|7||1963||Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta||7,595,000||Gooding||Scottsdale|
|8||2017||Pagani Zonda Aether Roadster||6,812,000||RM Sotheby’s||Abu Dhabi|
|9||1958||Ferrari 250 GT Series I Cabriolet||6,800,000||Gooding||Pebble Beach|
|10||2002||Ferrari F2002 F1||6,643,750||RM Sotheby’s||Abu Dhabi|
The Ten-Most Expensive Cars of 2019 (January to December)
1994 McLaren F1 ‘LM-Specification’
A 1994 McLaren F1 ‘LM-Specification’ sold for $19,805,000 at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey 2019 sale as not only the most-expensive car sold during the 2019 Monterey / Pebble Beach car week but also to set a new McLaren marque record.
Only 64 McLaren F1 cars were ever made in this record car is one of only two production cars that were upgraded to LM-Specification. The sister car set a marque record of $13,750,000 at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey 2015 auction but a further 1995 McLaren F1 since sold for $15,620,000 at the Bonhams Quail Lodge 2017 sale.
1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta
A 1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta sold for €16,475,000 ($19,256,750) as the top result at the Artcurial Paris Rétromobile 2019 classic car auction.
The 1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Touring Berlinetta, chassis #412024, was the second of only 5 examples built with the Carrozzeria Touring berlinetta coachwork. Alfa produced fewer than 50 of the 8C2900 chassis. The last one to have sold at auction was a 1939 Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Lungo Spider that set the marque record at $19,800,000 at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey 2016 sale.
1958 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider
This California Spider was the 11th of 50 LWB California Spiders built and one of small group fitted with covered headlights. It was raced in period and competed in SCCA events in Florida, USA.
2014 Lamborghini Veneno Roadster
A 2014 Lamborghini Veneno Roadster sold for $8,337,182 as the top result at the Bonhams Bonmont Sale on the banks of Lake Geneva in Switzerland. It set a new marque record as the most expensive Lamborghini ever sold at public auction. Lamborgini built only nine Veneno Roadsters that sold out immediately despite a list price of $3.3 million. This car finished in beige over beige has only 325 km on the clock. It was one of a series of supercars seized by the Swiss authorities from the son of the president of Equatorial Guinea.
1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta
The 1962 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta, chassis #3359GT, was rather daringly, given current market uncertainty, offered without reserve at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey 2019 sale. The car not only made estimate, but also sold for $8,145,000 – around half a million dollar more than a similar car achieved earlier in the year.
The fully restored car is Ferrari Classiche certified and received a mention of honor at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’este in 2012.
1965 Ford GT40 Roadster Prototype
The 1965 Ford GT40 Roadster Prototype sold for $7,650,000 at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey 2019 as the most-expensive American car thus far sold this year. It is also one of the most-expensive Fords ever.
This Ford was the eighth of 12 GT40 prototypes built and the first of a mere five roadsters. It is the only example of its kind to have continually survived in its original form.
The Ford GT40 Roadster was built for Shelby American as a test and development car and is one of two cars also used by Kar Kraft for “J” and “X” Series development. It wa raced in period by legendary drivers such as Carroll Shelby, Ken Miles, and Jim Clark.
1963 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta
The 1963 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta with coachwork by Scaglietti, chassis 4037 GT, sold for $7,595,000 at the Gooding Scottsdale 2019 sale. The result was at the top end of a surprisingly modest presale estimate. This Ferrari 250 GT was the fourth to last of 166 SWB cars produced and one of only 96 Lusso SWB Berlinettas built. As a late production car, this SWB offers the refinements made over the course of the model’s production, including a bigger windshield, more luxurious seats, and a leather dash. It had a string of owners including Nicolas Cage (in 2006).
2017 Pagani Zonda Aether Roadster
A 2017 Pagani Zonda Aether Roadster sold for a marque record $6,812,000 as the top result at the RM Sotheby’s Abu Dhabi 2019 auction.
The 2017 Pagani Zonda Aether Roadster was one of the final and most potent examples of this hypercar ever built. The Zonda has an exposed carbon-fiber roadster body powered by a naturally aspirated 7.3-liter V-12 engine producing 760 bhp and mated to a six-speed manual gearbox. It has only 1,400 km on the clock.
1958 Ferrari 250 GT Series 1 Cabriolet
A 1958 Ferrari 250 GT Series 1 Cabriolet sold for $6,800,000 at the Gooding Pebble Beach 2019 classic car auction It is one of only 40 Series 1 cabriolet built making it rarer than the California Spider – new the cabriolet was significantly more expensive too.
This 1958 Ferrari 250 GT Series 1 Cabriolet received numerous accolades at concourses during the 1990s and enticingly for the new owner seemed not have been shown much in recent years.
2002 Ferrari F2002 F1 Car
Michael Schumacher’s 2002 Ferrari F2002 F1 Car, chassis #219, sold for $6,643,750 at the RM Sotheby’s Abu Dhabi auction. Schumacher drove this chassis to three Grands Prix victories in 2002: Imola, Zeltweg, and Magny Cours. The victory in France secured Schumacher his 5th World Drivers’ Championship title. This F2002 was also driven to further podium finishes including 2nd with Schumacher at Monaco, and 2nd at Spa and 4th at Hockenheim with teammate Rubens Barrichello.
Million-Dollar-Plus Cars at Public Auctions in 2019
In 2019, at least* 161 cars were sold at public auctions for over a million dollars. (*Definitions vary, results include auction premium and charity lots.)
- January 2019 – 25: 2 at Kissimmee (Mecum), 23 at Scottsdale, Arizona (3 Bonhams, 9 Gooding, 6 RM Sotheby’s, 5 Barrett-Jackson).
- February 2019 – 19: 19 at Paris Rétromobile (10 RM Sotheby’s, 6 Artcurial, 3 Bonhams).
- March 2019 – 20: 17 at Amelia Island (9 RM Sotheby’s, 6 Gooding, 2 Bonhams), 1 at Phoenix (Mecum) and 2 at Fort Lauderdale (RM Auctions)
- April 2019 – 4: 3 at Essen (3 RM Sotheby’s) and 1 at Tupelo Museum (1 Bonhams).
- May 2019 – 15: 2 at St Louis (RM Sotheby’s Guyton Collection), 6 at Indianapolis (Mecum), 2 at Aston Martin Works (Bonhams), 5 at Villa Erba (RM Sotheby’s).
- June 2019 – 2: 1 at Paris (Artcurial), 1 at Connecticut (Barrett-Jackson).
- July 2019 – 1: 1 at Goodwood Festival of Speed (Bonhams)
- August 2019 – 49: 49 during Monterey Week (21 at RM Sotheby’s Monterey, 17 at Gooding Pebble Beach, 5 at Bonhams Quail Lodge, 5 at Mecum Monterey, 1 at Russo and Steele Monterey)
- September – 11: 1 at Goodwood Revival (Bonhams), 10 at Bonmont Sale (Bonhams)
- October – 5: 2 at De Zoute (Bonhams), 1 at Hershey (RM Sotheby’s), 1 at London (RM Sotheby’s), 1 at Las Vegas (Barrett-Jackson).
- November – 9: 2 at Riyadh (Silverstone) and 7 at Abu Dhabi (RM Sotheby’s)
- December – 1: 1 at London (Bonhams)
In the battle of the auction houses:
The list takes the published results of the following auctions into consideration:
- January 2019: Kissimmee (Mecum), Scottsdale Arizona (Barrett-Jackson, Bonhams, Gooding, RM Sotheby’s, Silver, Worldwide)
- February 2019: Paris Rétromobile Week (RM Sotheby’s, Artcurial, Bonhams)
- March 2019: Amelia Island (Bonhams, Gooding, RM Sotheby’s, Russo and Steele), Phoenix (Mecum), Fort Lauderdale (RM Auctions).
- April 2019: Goodwood Members (Bonhams), Palm Beach (Barrett-Jackson), Houston (Mecum), Essen (RM Sotheby’s), Tupelo Automobile Museum New York (Bonhams).
- May 2019: St Louis (RM Sotheby’s Guyton Collection), Indy (Mecum), Aston Martin Works (Bonhams), Villa Erba (RM Sotheby’s), Auburn Spring (RM Sotheby’s).
- June 2019: Greenwich (Bonhams), Paris (Artcurial), Connecticut (Barrett-Jackson), Chantilly (Bonhams), Portland (Mecum).
- July 2019: Goodwood Festival of Speed (Bonhams), Denver (Mecum), Harrisburg (Mecum).
- August 2019: Monterey Week – Monterey (RM Sotheby’s, Mecum), Pebble Beach (Gooding), Quail Lodge (Bonhams), Auburn (RM Sotheby’s)
- September 2019: Beaulieu (Bonhams), Goodwood Revival (Bonhams), Dallas (Mecum), Louisville (Mecum), Saragga Collection in Portugal (RM Sotheby’s), Bonmont Sale (Bonhams)
- October 2019: Philadelphia Simeone Museum (Bonhams), Zoute (Bonhams), Hershey (RM Sotheby’s), Las Vegas (Mecum), London (RM Sotheby’s), Chicago (Mecum), Las Vegas (Barrett-Jackson)
- November 2019: London to Brighton (Bonhams), Riyadh (Silverstone), Abu Dhabi (RM Sotheby’s)
- December 2019: London (Bonhams), Kansas (Mecum)
The next major classic car auctions include:
Most-Expensive Cars of the Year
- Top-Ten Lists for 2020 (thus far), 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 & all time.
- $10 Million Plus – The Most-Expensive Cars of All Time