The Ferrari 275 GTB/4*S NART Spyder was one of only 10 of its kind ever built.
A lively bidding session at a California car auction on Saturday ended with a record-setting $27.5 million sale of a rare 1967 Ferrari.
The red Ferrari 275 GTB/4*S NART Spyder was one of only 10 of its kind ever built. It was owned by a North Carolina millionaire and former mayor of Lexington, N.C., the Los Angeles Times reported. The car’s single-family ownership helped increase the interest and the price, the paper reported.
“This is a bittersweet moment for us,” Eddie Smith Jr., whose father bought the car in 1968, told the crowd before the sale. “Ferraris came and went, but this one never went, thank God. We enjoyed it as a family for 45 years.”
The final bid was $25 million without commission, making it the most expensive road car ever sold at auction, according to the Times. However it did not eclipse the $29.6 million price tag set at an auction in July by a 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196 race car.
Sources told Bloomberg news the winning bidder was billionaire Canadian fashion entrepreneur Lawrence Stroll.
According to the Times, cheers grew louder and louder as bidding jumped from $10 to $16 million and beyond. The final bid brought those in attendance to their feet in applause.
The sale took place in Monterey, Calif., and was handled by the North American Racing Team, a group created to promote Ferraris in the United States.
Smith Jr. told the new owner to: "Drive it, love it, enjoy it, and more importantly share it with others so they can see it."
He said the family decided to sell the car because it has been “kept in a prison” since their father’s 2007 death, and it would be his wish to have it on the road for people to enjoy.
Smith Sr. served as mayor of Lexington from 1970 to 1975, and he also served on the boards of a hospital, college, and chamber of college. He bought the car new for $14,500, the equivalent of about $100,000 today, according to the Times.
Smith Sr. made his fortune from a mail-order company he started, and was an avid car collector, though the look, sound and feel of the 1967 Ferrari made it his favorite, his son told The Dispatch of Lexington.
The family said proceeds from the sale will go to different charities.
First published August 18 2013, 7:08 PM