Rare cars auctioned for millions in Cernobbio, Italy

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1965 Ford GT Roadster

A 1965 Ford GT 40 was one of the highlights of last week's auction. Image: Willy_G91/Flickr/CC BY-ND

Over the weekend RM auctions conducted its inaugural sale at the Villa d’Este concourse in Cernobbio, Italy. The event boasted  a catalog to make classic car lovers drool.  On sale were a veritable fleet of rare and historically significant automobiles. Many of the vehicles went for several millions of dollars.

A highly anticipated event

Anticipation for the auction has been high among collectors and car aficionados. Automobile correspondent Paul Lienert, said before the event, “The first-ever Villa d’Este sale will feature the crème de la crème of classic European hardware.”

Rare Ford roadster prized

Before the auction occurred, many collectors considered the highlight of the sale, held on May 21, to be a rare 1965 Ford GT40 Works prototype roadster. The coveted car was a works entrant in the 1965 Targa Florio.  It was co-piloted by Sir John Whitmore and Bob Bondurant. Although it was among the top sellers, by the time the dust settled it had not topped the sales at the much-anticipated event.

Top sellers go for multi-millions

The top sellers went for multiple millions of dollars. Among them were the 1955 Ferrari 375 MM, which sold for $4.8 million. A 1938 art-deco Talbot-Lago T150-C SS was sold for more than $4 million. A four-cylinder Ferrari 500 Testa Rossa went for nearly $4 million. A 1959 Ferrari 250 California sold for $3.6 million. The 1947 Bugatti Type 57sc Atlante earned just less than $3 million, as did the above-mentioned 1965 Ford GT40 roadster prototype.

Another Ferrari, the 1953 250 MM, which was originally built for Mexican collector Efrain Ruiz Echeverria who drove it in the 1953 Carrera Panamericana, garnered $3 million.

Also going for more than $1 million

Also selling for million-plus prices were a 1967 Lamborghini Marzal, which went for $2.1 million, and a 1970 Lancia Stratos HF Zero, which was sold for $1 million.

Some go for under a million

Two Zagato-bodied Alfa Romeos from the 1960s sold for around $900,000 and $370,000 apiece. All totaled, the auction brought in about $32 million.



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