A MCLAREN F1 has set a new auction record after selling at the Gooding & Company Pebble Beach sale for $20.45 million (£14.76 million). It is the highest amount ever paid at auction for the rare supercar.
The previous highest amount paid for a McLaren F1 was $15.62 million (£11.27 million) in 2017. With only 106 examples ever made, the McLaren F1 has become one of the most sought-after supercars of all time.
Gooding & Company described it as “a chance to acquire a McLaren F1 road car in what is effectively as-new condition. Chassis 029 is not just any road car, but a singular example, finished in a tasteful, one-off livery that perfectly suits the car’s understated design and serves as an homage to one of the key figures that brought the F1 into being.”
One of the factors that made this example of the F1 so desirable was that it had covered less than 250 miles since it was manufactured in 1995, making it one of the lowest-mileage examples in the world.
It is the only car to be painted in Creighton Brown, a colour named in honour of McLaren Cars Ltd.’s commercial director who helped found the original F1 project. With an interior upholstered in light tan and Brazilian brown, the car is one of the more understated F1s made.
The sale also included the original bespoke four-piece luggage set that could be stored in the side compartments, and a matching tool roll with items made from lightweight gold-plated titanium, in keeping with the car’s ethos of fanatical weight saving. The successful bidder also gets a full Facom tool chest and a special Tag Heuer 6000 Chronometer watch.
Originally delivered to a collector in Japan, the car was kept in static display for 17 years and was driven only sparingly. Despite its lack of use, McLaren confirmed that the car did have annual servicing between 2003 and 2006, with one further service in 2008.
It was sold in 2013 to an American collector that imported the car to the US under its Show or Display exemption, where it then underwent the necessary work to make it compliant with local emissions requirements. According to Gooding & Company, the car was not driven since 2014.
With a carbon fibre structure and central driving position, the McLaren F1 was the poster car for a generation of car enthusiasts. It was powered by a 6.1-litre naturally aspirated V12 engine created by BMW and had outputs of 627bhp and 479ft lb. It was capable of 240mph.
Notable McLaren F1 owners over the years include Jay Leno, Rowan Atkinson, Elon Musk, Ralph Lauren and the Sultan of Brunei.