- The 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196R Formula 1 Single-Seater driven by Juan Manel Fangio broke three auction world records today when it was sold for $29,650,095.
- The 1954 Mercedes also becomes the most valuable Formula 1 racing car ever sold, as well as the most valuable Mercedes-Benz.
- The Mercedes racecar also introduced Formula 1 to new technologies, including a fuel-injected engine and a Mercedes-Benz all-independent suspension.
GOODWOOD, England — The 1954 Mercedes-Benz W196R Formula 1 Single-Seater driven by Juan Manel Fangio broke three auction world records today when it was sold for $29,650,095 at the Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed sale.
The Mercedes, in which five-time champion Fangio won his second Formula 1 world title, is now the most valuable car ever sold at auction. Bonhams says the previous record of $15,247,611 was set by a Ferrari in 2011.
The 1954 Mercedes also becomes the most valuable F1 racing car ever sold, as well as the most valuable Mercedes-Benz.
Robert Brooks, Bonhams chairman, said in a statement: "I have handled some of the world's most desirable and important motor cars during a motoring auction career spanning five decades, but I have reached a peak today with this legendary Grand Prix car. It was a personal privilege to preside over the sale of this vehicle, which is not only one of the most significant motor cars of the 20th century, but also the most important historic Grand Prix racing car ever offered for sale."
Bonhams says the 2.5-liter straight-8 W196 bearing chassis number 00006/54 was the car in which Fangio won both the 1954 German and Swiss Grand Prix races. These victories were the first two to be achieved in succession by the Mercedes-Benz factory F1 team in its post-war racing comeback.
The Mercedes racecar also introduced F1 to new technologies, including a fuel-injected engine, a Mercedes-Benz all-independent suspension, a multi-tubular spaceframe lightweight chassis design, and the inline-8 engine configuration used to lower the car's overall height
Edmunds says: A great day for car collectors and racing enthusiasts as the world again pays homage to Fangio's remarkable career.