A 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO was sold recently at RM Sotheby‘s Monterey Auction for USD48.4 million, making it the highest-ever price paid for any car at an auction. Previously, the record was also held by a Ferrari 250 GTO as well, a 1962-1963 model that sold for USD38 million by Bonhams in 2014.
The third of only 36 GTOs built with matching engine and chassis number 3413, the car has a rich history and a storied racing career. It is one of only four upgraded in period by coachbuilder Scaglietti with the Series II GTO/64 and one of only seven to ever receive this more aggressive and successful coachwork. Designed by Pininfarina, the new bodywork made the car lower, wider, and shorter, with a more aerodynamic, steeply raked windshield, larger tires, wider track, and the engine sitting lower. What makes this GTO stand out with its Series II body is the integration of the rear spoiler to the bodywork and its extended roofline in the style of the 250 LM, the latter of which it only shares with one other 250 GTO.
For its racing career, 3413 was driven by Edoardo Lualdi-Gabardi to victory in the 1962 Italian GT Championship. In 1963, it was first in class in the Targa Florio driven by Gianni Bulgari and Maurizio Grana. It repeated the feat in the 1964 Targo Florio with Corrado Ferlaino and Luigi Taramazzo behind the wheel and was a key contributor to Ferrari’s victory in the 1964 International Championship for GT Manufacturers. Overall, it won over 15 class and overall wins during the 1962–1965 seasons.
The most recent owner of 3413 was Numerix Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Gregory Whitten, and to his credit, 3413 was never a garage queen, having been regularly exhibited and driven around the world, including four appearances at the Cavallino Classic between 2001 and 2008 and four seasons in the Shell Ferrari Historic Challenge between 2001 and 2009. Chassis 3413 also participated in the GTO 40th Anniversary tour in September 2002; the Monterey Historic Races in August 2004, 2008, and 2011; the GTO 45th Anniversary tour in 2007; the Goodwood Revival Meeting in 2011; and the GTO 50th and 55th Anniversary tours, respectively, held in 2012 and 2017. The car was furthermore presented during the GTO celebration at the 2011 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, where it was reunited with 17 other GTOs.
Prior to going on sale at the auction, 3413 was inspected by representatives from Ferrari’s Classiche department. Ferrari historian and expert Marcel Massini also recently inspected the car and considers it one of the very best examples, pointing to its successes with Lualdi-Gabardi, its originality, and all its numbers-matching components (engine block, gearbox and rear axle), which are included with the car’s sale. What’s even better is that the 3413 comes with another engine, that of a 250 GT but built to GTO specification, as the original one was removed years ago for preservation and is included with the car sale, ostensibly so that the owner can maintain the car’s originality while being able to run it in vintage races.
Now, while USD48.4 million may seem exorbitant for a classic Ferrari that’s 56 years old, it’s not the most expensive car to ever go on sale. That honor goes to yet another 250 GTO–a Tour de France-winning 1963 model–which WeatherTech founder and Chief Executive Officer David MacNeil acquired in a private sale only a few months ago in June for USD70 million.
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