Classic automobiles are some of the most valued, sought after and highly thought of commodities in the world. This is especially true of the rarer cars from eras gone by. They represent great investment opportunities for those of means and will, in some cases, gain value if well-looked after. Truly elite cars of the past are reserved for the uber-rich however, as you can see from this list of extravagant machines below. Here are the 10 most expensive cars of all time.
1936 MERCEDES-BENZ 540K SPECIAL ROADSTER
Arguably the best looking Mercedes of all time, the 540K is a stately machine, complete with a powerful straight-8 engine and the ability to instantly turn you into a style icon should you get behind the wheel.
Price: $11,770,000 (£7,208,079)
1957 FERRARI 250 TESTAROSSA
A race-bred stallion, the 250 Testarossa is as iconic as it is beautiful. This car is one of only 34 ever built, making it extremely rare too.
Price: $12,402,500 (£7,584,791)
1953 FERRARI 340/375 MM BERLINETTA ‘COMPETIZIONE’
Many of the most expensive Ferraris are competition cars, and this is no different. It entered the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1953, as well as the Carrera Panamericana, and it was victorious at the 12 Hours of Pescara.
Price: $12,812,800 (£7,846,701)
1964 FERRARI 250 LM
This multi race-winning car is damn near perfect. Painstakingly maintained to the highest possible standards, it competed internationally in the mid-sixties and sold for over £8m in 2013.
Price: $14,300,000 (£8,745,214)
1957 FERRARI 250 TESTAROSSA
This was the first 250 Testarossa ever built, and it’s easily recognisable by its distinctive black paint job. It has competed many a time over the decades, and has proved successful thanks to its brutal V12 engine.
Price: $16,390,000 (£10,033,885)
1954 FERRARI 375-PLUS SPIDER COMPETIZIONE
Arguably the most powerful sports-racing Ferrari ever, the 375-Plus sold at auction for over £10m this year at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. It finished second in the prestigious Mille Miglia in 1954 with Umberto Maglioli behind the wheel as well as competing in the Le Mans 24-Hour race that same year.
1964 FERRARI 275 GTB/C SPECIALE BY SCAGLIETTI
This car was built to compete against the likes of Ford and Shelby at Le Mans in 1965. It is lighter and more powerful than the 275 GTB road car yet just as elegant, although its powerful V12 engine is far from tamed.
Price: $26,400,000 (£16,161,962)
1967 FERRARI 275 GTB/4 NART SPIDER
One of the few cars on this list not to have a racing heritage, the 275 GTB/4 NART Spider is an impeccably stylish open-top roadster. This particular one is fully-restored and even starred alongside Steve McQueen in the acclaimed film The Thomas Crown Affair.
Price: $27,500,000 (£16,840,687)
1954 MERCEDES-BENZ W196
This car is a rather special entry on the list. It is the exact car that Juan Manuel Fangio won his second Formula 1 championship in in 1954, and it was driven elsewhere by the likes of Sir Stirling Moss and Peter Collins. It sold last year at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in ‘unspoilt condition’ too, meaning it had all the dirt, scrapes and bumps preserved from all those years ago.
1962 FERRARI 250 GTO
The Ferrari 250 GTO is the gem in Ferrari’s crown. It’s stunning looks, roaring V12 and racing pedigree is quite simply unmatched. There were only 39 ever built and this one is perhaps the finest of them all. It’s the most valuable car in history.
Price: $38,115,000 (£23,309,360)
Source: The Gentleman’s Journal
Header image: RM Sotheby’s