These wheels of fortune are spinning in favor of Mercedes-Benz.
The German car brand confirmed it has sold a luxury car for a staggering US$142 million (€135 million), breaking the previous record for the most expensive vehicle ever sold.
“We [wanted]to demonstrate the power of the Mercedes brand in a single act,” its chairman Ola Källenius said in a statement after the May 5 closed invitational auction at the Mercedes Museum in Stuttgart, BNN Bloomberg reported. The event was held in cooperation with the car auction company RM Sotheby’s.
The automobile in question was an extremely rare 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut coupe, one of only two examples ever made. Mercedes did not reveal the buyer’s identity; However, the auction reportedly featured around a dozen bidders, with several Swiss-Italian, English and US Mercedes-Benz collectors being circulated as possible buyers.
The sale nearly surpassed the car company’s previous public record of $70 million spent on a 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO in 2018. Proceeds from the sale will reportedly go toward the creation of the Mercedes-Benz Fund, a global scholarship fund aimed at helping financially troubled students achieve their career dreams, according to a Mercedes press release.
The price might seem high, but car lovers claim the number is reasonable given the caliber of the car, which can go up to 186 mph.
“This car is 100% worth what it was sold for,” said rare automobile broker Stephen Serio. “No one ever thought Mercedes would sell it.”
In fact, part of the value of the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR is due to the fact that the vehicle is extremely rare. Of the nine 300 SLR cars produced, there were only two SLR Uhlenhaut coupe prototypes, which derive their name from Mercedes’ famed test department manager Rudolf Uhlenhaut, according to BNN Bloomberg’s report. He used one of the models as a company car, while the second Haute Rod is kept safe in the company vault.
“Their 1930s and 1950s race cars are rare and most are still owned by the factory, so any that come out are very desirable,” Hagerty’s Brian Rabold told CNN.
Luckily, the recent purchase doesn’t preclude backseat car fans from ever seeing this automotive holy grail again. Under the terms of the sale, the Uhlenhaut will remain on display alongside the second SLR coupé in the Mercedes-Benz Museum, while the anonymous owner is given the opportunity to occasionally – and very carefully – give his vintage whip a spin.
https://nypost.com/2022/05/20/mercedes-benz-triples-record-for-most-expensive-car-sold-at-142m/ Mercedes-Benz breaks record for most expensive car sold at $142 million