A rare Mercedes-Benz race car sold for $142 million on May 5, securing its place as the most expensive car ever sold.
RM Sotheby’s announced the sale of the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupe for 135 million euros, or about $142 million, at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart, Germany. The auction was by-invitation.
The sale price catapulted far above the previous record for most expensive car sold at auction set by a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO at $48.5 million in 2018 and surpassed the $70 million private sale record for a car.
British car collector and dealer Simon Kidston was the winning bidder on behalf of an unnamed client. CNBC reports that Kidston lobbied the Mercedes-Benz board for 18 months to consider selling the prized car, one of only two such coupes made.
The car will be available for display at times, a condition of the sale, reports Bloomberg, and the buyer will also be able to drive it.
“It’s reasonable to say that nobody ever imagined that this car would ever be offered for sale, so for Mercedes-Benz to ask RM Sotheby’s to conduct the auction was an absolute honor,” said Peter Wallman, RM Sotheby’s chairman for the U.K. and EMEA.
Mercedes-Benz said it will donate the proceeds to establish a scholarship fund and educational research into the environment and decarbonization.