In 2019, a Platinum Silver Metallic McLaren F1 became the most expensive example of the pioneering, Gordon Murray-designed three-seater ever sold, collecting $19.8 million at auction. It was as fine a specimen as you’d hope for it to be, given it’s status as a one-of-two LM-Specification road car. That car’s crown, however, will be challenged later this week, when a less-traveled F1 crosses the auction block, where its consignors expect it to fetch “in excess of $15 million.”
The car we speak of is chassis 029, the 25th McLaren F1 road car produced, which was coated in one-off Creighton Brown paint, named for one of the executives who got McLaren into road cars. For most of its existence, 029 has been kept in a collection in Japan, being “carefully maintained and seldom driven,” as evidenced by its odometer reading of 387 kilometers. That’s 240.5 miles, or less than a tenth the distance the winning F1 covered during the 1995 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Now under U.S. ownership, 029 is still maintained as meticulously and will be carted later this week to market at Pebble Beach Auctions outside Monterey, California. There, it will be auctioned by Gooding & Company alongside its fitted luggage, owner’s manual, a TAG Heuer watch, and the car’s specialty service equipment—no word on whether that includes the requisite vintage Compaq laptop.
The auction itself starts Friday evening and extends into Saturday afternoon, somewhere in the process of which F1 029 could set a record for the most expensive McLaren ever sold. A more estimable record, like being the most-driven F1, is still feasibly within reach, though something tells us the kind of bidder who seeks out low-mile one-offs is more interested in looking at their cars than driving them.
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