In this post, I'm going to come back to the results of the RM Sotheby's sale in Monaco which took place on the famous Monaco Formula 1 track on May 14th. I'm just curious to see if some cars have exploded their estimated price and if others on the contrary haven't found a buyer. But I will do this quickly to focus on the most expensive car in the world that was sold on May 5th.
You must have seen the news about the record-breaking sale of the Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé on May 5 for EUR 135,000,000 🤑 Unbelievable... It was sold at a confidential auction at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart (Germany). I like the term confidential as if the initial amount of EUR 50,000,000 would have allowed most people to spend their savings on this car. But it's always interesting to learn more about this exceptional model, both in terms of design and mechanics.
RM Sotheby's Monaco result
First, here's a follow-up of my previous post about this RM Sotheby's Monaco sale with the final prices :
|1968 Cisitalia-Abarth 850||1958 BMW 507 Roadster||1961 Ferrari 250 GTE 2+2 I|
|70,000 €||2,100,000 €||300,000 €|
|40,250 €||2,030,000 €||314,375 €|
|1965 Ferrari 275 GTB||1965 Ferrari 275 GTS||1966 Ferrari 330 GT 2+2 II|
|1,700,000 €||1,400,000 €||190,000 €|
|2,030,000 €||Unknown||218,500 €|
|1968 Ferrari 365 GT 2+2||1973 Ferrari 365 GTS/4||1973 Ferrari 365 GTB/4|
|120,000 €||2,000,000 €||525,000 €|
|149,500 €||2,592,500 €||567,500 €|
|1973 Ferrari Dino 246 GTS||1976 Ferrari 365 GT4 2+2||1947 Delahaye 135 MS Sport|
|350,000 €||80,000 €||325,000 €|
|539,375 €||69,000 €||290,000 €|
The Monaco sale brought in more than EUR 30,000,000 mainly thanks to the sale of 1991 Williams FW14 belonging to the collection of Nigel Mansell which exceeded its estimate by more than one million (final price: EUR 4,055,000) :
This car was famous because at the end of the 1991 British Grand Prix, Nigel Mansell won the race but at during his victory lap, Mansell stopped in order to pick up Ayrton Senna who ran out of fuel and drove back to the pit lane.
But despite the price of this Formula 1 car, it didn't reach a quarter of 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupe.
History of Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR
Max Hoffman, the U.S. distributor for Mercedes-Benz, asked to Daimler-Benz in 1953 to put a customer version of the Mercedes W194, Grand Prix race car, into production. Friedrich Geiger, German automobile designer who designed also Mercedes-Benz 540K, penned the body of this two-seat coupé with distinctive gullwing doors. The Mercedes-Benz 300 SL is presented in 1954. But, Max Hoffman believed that a roadster will be a better idea. The roadster was presented during the Geneva Motor Show in 1957. It was produced until 1963 with a price of $US 11,000.
The selling price of a Mercedes Gullwing is usually around 1 million and even the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Alloy Gullwing only reached US$ 6,825,000 USD last January.
So why did this model reach this price?
In the 50's, Mercedes dominated motorsport, in Formula 1 with Juan Manual Fangio (champion in 1954 and 1955) at the wheel of W196. But also in the great car races like Mille Miglia, Targa Florio with Stirling Moss behind the wheel of an open-top 300 SLR. But in 1955 during the 24 hours of Le Mans, Mercedes-Benz was marked by the terrible accident of its car which killed its French pilot Pierre Levegh and 83 spectators, and distanced it for years from racing.
Rudolf Uhlenhaut in 1955
The main architect of these victories was Rudolf Uhlenhaut British-German engineer working since 1931 for Mercedes, father of Mercedes-Benz 300 SL and 300 SLR. With the crash and the Mercedes withdrawal from motorsport, the 300 SLR became useless after the accident. But Uhlenhaut's role changed, concentrating more on series-production model, he used the W196 chassis to build road cars with its famous gullwing doors.
This example is the second of the two adaptations aka Uhlenhaut Coupé (one is still in Mercedes Museum in Stuggart). The production began in December 1955 to finish in June 1956. But the car wasn't sell, it has been retained by Mercedes-Benz in order to do some PR with important people including the Duke of Kent.
The car was restored 1986 by Tony Merrick, specialist in race preparation to participate in various events including the 1988 Geneva International Motor Show, 2001 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegane... A pure beauty... but the selling price is completely crazy. What do you think about it ?
Delahaye 135 MS Sport Coupé >
From Ferrari 1961 250 GTE to 1976 365 GT4 (2)
From Ferrari 1961 250 GTE to 1976 365 GT4 (1)
BMW 507 Roadster Series II
Cisitalia-Abarth 850 Scorpione Coupé
Result Bonhams Amelia Island 2022
Fangio Mercedes-Benz 300 SL
RM Sotheby's—The Most Valuable Car in the World
Have a great day...