Top 5 most expensive cars ever sold at auction

Published on Mar 14, 2022 at 4:04 PM (UTC+4)
by Ben Welham

Last updated on Apr 28, 2022 at 4:15 PM (UTC+4)
Edited by Kate Bain

Top 5 most expensive cars ever sold at auction

People are willing to spend millions on rare and special classic cars, but what’s the most anyone’s spent to get their hands on the best of the best?

Well, here’s a list of the top dollar amounts people have dropped at auction:

5. 1956 Aston Martin DBR1 – $22,550,000

Back in 2017, a green Aston Martin DBR1 sold at an RM Sotheby’s auction during Monterey car week for a whopping $22,550,000, making it the most expensive British to ever sell.

The reason this one in particular was so sought after was because it was one of the first five DBR1s ever made. 

It was also raced at the 1959 Nürburgring 1000, driven by the late Sir Stirling Moss. 

4. 1956 Ferrari 290 MM – $28,050,000

1956 must have been a good year because just like the Aston Martin, this Ferrari sold for a staggering sum at auction.

Sold at an RM Sotheby’s auction in 2015, this Ferrari 290 MM fetched $28,050,000.

This particular car was built for Juan Manuel Fangio to race in the 1956 Mille Miglia, and there are just four in existence.

3. 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196 – $29,600,000

The Mercedes-Benz W196 was a Formula One race car driven by world champion Juan Manuel Fangio.

It sold for just short of $30 million during an auction at the Goodwood Festival of Speed car event in 2013.

Advertised as being in ‘authentic condition’ the car was covered in a few scratches and blemishes from being on the track.

2. 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO – $38,115,000

Second to last is, of course, a Ferrari 250 GTO.

This is a car that was recently declared a piece of art as opposed to a car because of its immense value and status among collectors worldwide. 

This particular car held the record for being the most expensive car ever sold at auction for four years.

Just 39 250 GTOs were ever made and each car was built to compete in the 1963 FIA World GT Championships.

This car won the event, and its price reflected that.

1. 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO – $48,405,000

Topping this list is yet another Ferrari 250 GTO which sold four years later in 2018. 

Selling for a cool $48,405,000, this car was and still is the most expensive car to ever sell at auction.

This particular 250 GTO – chassis number 3413 GT – was owned for two decades by Ferrari enthusiast and vintage racing driver Dr Gregory Whitten prior to its 2018 sale.

On top of this, it was driven to the RM Sotheby’s auction site by five-time Le Mans winner Derek Bell, and bidding was opened at $35 million. 

In total, there were three bidders who wanted the car and the end sum surpassed the previous record by $10 million.

Bonus car sale:

If you thought the above auctions were pricey, then wait until you hear about a certain silver car that sold privately for a staggering $70 million.

That’s right, in 2018 a silver ‘Tour De France’ 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO sold for a record-high price – making it the most expensive car ever believed to have sold.

Sources suggest the car was sold privately by a German collector to David MacNeil, the founder of WeatherTech who has made his fortune through selling car floor mats.


Ben Welham

Ben is a freelance motoring journalist who studied Journalism and previously produced daily content at DriveTribe. He has a worrying obsession with Tudor watches, and his dream car is the Porsche GT3 Touring.