Mercedes-Benz offered an unique 1955 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé, dubbed the “Mona Lisa of automobiles” due to its rarity and racing pedigree, for $142 million on Could 5, the best value ever fetched by a automotive at public sale.
The automotive was offered to a non-public collector on Could 5 throughout a secretive public sale placed on by RM Sotheby’s and Mercedes-Benz in Stuttgart, Germany, the public sale home introduced Thursday.
Considered one of solely two in existence, the 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé is called after Rudolf Uhlenhaut, the German engineer who constructed the prototypes in 1955 with the corporate’s racing division, and has lengthy been thought-about “probably the most stunning automotive on the earth,” RM Sotheby’s stated in an announcement.
The nine-figure price ticket almost tripled that of the earlier public sale document holder, a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO that fetched $48.4 million in 2018.
Mercedes-Benz was the automotive’s solely earlier proprietor, and saved it in one of many firm’s vaults, whereas the opposite was used as Uhlenhaut’s private automotive.
The funds will probably be utilized by Mercedes-Benz to determine a fund that can present scholarships for younger folks finding out environmental science and decarbonisation, the corporate stated.
The client has agreed to permit the automotive to be placed on public show for particular events, RM Sotheby’s stated.
The one different unique 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé can be owned by the automotive maker, and is on show on the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart.
Information of the public sale got here as a shock to many automotive collectors, as a result of Mercedes-Benz had beforehand refused to promote both of the 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupés. The 2 automotive’s frames had been put aside by Uhlenhaut throughout manufacturing to be reworked from Method 1 automobiles to coupés that would compete within the open-road Carrera Panamericana race in Italy. The carmaker finally shuttered its racing division later that yr after the 1955 Le Mans disaster, which killed Mercedes-Benz driver Pierre Levegh and 83 spectators. It stays probably the most lethal incident in motorsports historical past, and Mercedes-Benz solely returned to racing in 1988.
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