Sunday, December 1, 2013

1968 Ford GT40 Gulf/Mirage Sets Auction Record At $11 Million

1968 Ford GT40 Gulf/Mirage
There are no certainties on the auction circuit, though any association with the late Steve McQueen can almost guarantee an upward nudge on the final bid. Throw in a provenance that includes multiple racing wins, work in one of the most beloved films in automotive history along with an iconic livery and you've got the 1968 Ford GT40 Gulf/Mirage Lightweight Racing car seen here. The car took the checkered flag at Spa in 1967 when it was still Mirage M.10003, becoming the first car to wear the powder blue and marigold to victory in the process. In 1968, this machine underwent a slew of changes at the hands of J.W.A. in England, making it GT40 chassis number P/1074.

After a few more wins on the racing circuit, the car was sold to David Brown of Tampa, Florida in 1970. Brown leased the GT40 to Steve McQueen's Solar Productions for work as a camera car in McQueen's now-legendary film, Le Mans. In order to go to work, the car's roof section was entirely removed, which adversely impacted both rigidity and aerodynamics. After five months of filming, the car was sold. Since then, it's gone through a handful of other owners and a complete restoration to racing glory.

At Friday's RM Auctions, the '68 GT40 brought home a lofty $11 million final bid, setting an all-time record for an American car at auction in the process. The previous title holder was a 1931 Dueseneberg Model J Long-Wheelbase Coupe, which sold for $10.34 million.


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