Classic Ferrari 250 GTO Scaglietti is most expensive car ever offered at auction

Won nine races in 1962

A 1962 FERRARI 250 GTO is set to sell at auction in August for a figure in excess of $45m (£34.2m).

The 250 GTO is an incredibly rare car — just 36 were manufactured between 1962 and 1964 — but its sublime looks, racing pedigree and road manners also contribute to its status as the Holy Grail of classic cars.

This particular model — chassis 3413— is fitted with its original engine, gearbox and rear axle, as well as a later Series II body designed by Carrozzeria Scaglietti in 1964.

As a Ferrari factory-run vehicle in its early life, this 250 GTO was used as a test car by Phil Hill, the former Formula 1 and Le Mans 24 Hours champion, for the 1962 Targa Florio road race.

The car was then sold to its first owner, one of Ferrari’s most favoured customers, Edoardo Lualdi-Gabardi. The Italian gentleman racer entered it in 10 races in 1962, winning all but one (in which he placed 2nd in class) and securing him the Italian National GT championship that year.

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Shelby Myers, car specialist at RM Sotheby’s, said: “We are thrilled at the rare opportunity to offer a legendary Ferrari 250 GTO at auction. This is just the third time that a GTO has been offered for public sale in the new millennium.

“The fact that the GTO exists as it did in period along with Dr. Whitten’s long-term enthusiastic ownership only adds to the car’s impeccable pedigree.”

In 2014, another 250 GTO became the most valuable car in history to be sold at auction after selling, for $38,115,000 (£22,843,633).

And earlier this month, the overall record for a car sale went to a 1963 250 GTO, sold privately by German racing driver Christian Gläsel for at least $70m (£52m). It’s believed to have been bought by David MacNeil, founder of the car floor mats maker WeatherTech.

Marcel Massini, a leading Ferrari historian, said that he was confident a GTO model would be sold for $100m (£75m) within five years.

It is thought some private sales may already have exceeded that figure but the details have been kept completely private.

Chassis 3413 will be going under the hammer at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey sale on August 22.

1963 Ferrari 250 GTO sells for £52m, becomes the world’s most expensive car