Ferrari 250 GTO: Most-wanted classic car
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Ferrari could become world's most expensive classic
A classic Ferrari is expected to become the world's most expensive car after it was put up for sale at almost $80 million.
The Ferrari 250 GTO is the most sought-after classic car because of its perfect blend of looks, rarity and performance on the track and public road.
Just 36 were built by the Italian manufacturer and this blue 1962 model was the second to roll off the production line. It was raced at Le Mans and Sebring and, despite being more than 50 years old, is capable of 0-96km/h in less than six seconds and a top speed of more than 273km/h.
The Ferrari has now come on to the open market for the first time in 20 years.
John Collins, who runs Ascot-based Ferrari specialist Talacrest, is selling it for more than $79.7 million — an unprecedented open-market asking price.
It will be the ninth Ferrari 250 GTO he has sold.
“I'd been looking for a 250 GTO for a while and the opportunity came up with this one, which is the second GTO built,” says Collins.
“It is a beautiful Ferrari, the holy grail of classic cars, and it has a great racing history, having finished sixth overall at Le Mans and first in class at Sebring.
“I have already had one offer on the car and know there will be interest. It will get you on the Ferrari 70th anniversary tour next year.
“After the US election, people are going to be looking at investing in assets and this is a lot better than a painting on the wall.”
Ferrari 250 GTOs normally only change hands behind closed doors, with a small number of brokers negotiating deals between the world's richest car collectors.
It is thought to be the first time in more than 20 years a GTO has been openly marketed in the UK.
Bonhams sold a Ferrari 250 GTO at a US auction in 2014, when it went for $53 million. The last time a GTO was auctioned before this was in 1990.
While the car was a successful track racer, it was also usable on the road.
All-round driveability, combined with looks and rarity has made the 250 GTO the holy grail of cars.
The car being offered by Talacrest was built in March 1962, and used by the Ferrari factory for testing before it was sold to Luigi Chinetti and his North American Racing Team.
It was the first GTO to be raced, with Phil Hill driving it to first in its class and second overall at the 12-hour Sebring race.
The car was then raced at the 1962 Le Mans 24-hour race, where it finished third in its class and sixth overall.
Between 1962 and 1965, it picked up numerous other podium places.
In 1969, it was sold for $7594 and then again, later that year, for $15,470.
The car changed hands in 1975 when it was bought for $18,280 by Steve Griswold, who restored the car before selling it in 1978 for $175,800.
Over the past 40 years, it has been shown at numerous concours events around the world and was recently on display in a museum.
With an $80 million asking price, the 250 GTO is 245 times more expensive than a brand-new Ferrari 488 and 4500 times the price of a Ford Fiesta, Britain's most popular car.