Ferrari’s last Le Mans winner to be auctioned

Ferrari’s last Le Mans winner to be auctioned

The 1963 Ferrari 275 P which won the Le Mans 24 Hours will be auctioned during the season-opening sales at Retromobile in early 2018.

Chassis #0816, which took outright victory in the 32nd running of the legendary French endurance race in 1964, is tipped to take the top spot once more and become the most valuable car ever sold at auction. 

Offered from the peerless Bardinon Collection of historically important and desirable Ferraris, curated over many decades by the late textile magnate Pierre Bardinon, who enjoyed a uniquely privileged friendship with Enzo himself, the 275 P will go under the hammer at Artcurial’s Paris sale in February.

Artcurial has been the auctioneer of choice for the Bardinon family, for whom the death duties attracted by the incredible value of their collection has led to its very break up.

The car in question began life in 1963 as a works 250 P, but was almost immediately converted to the latest 275 P specification especially for the factory’s assault on the 1964 Le Mans. Piloted by Jean Guichet and Nino Vaccarella, #0816 headed a 1-2-3 result for the brace of Ferraris entered and had eked out an impressive lead of five laps over the larger-engined 330 P in second place.

Although a 250 LM won a year later in ’65, #0816 was the last Ferrari entered by the factory’s Scuderia Ferrari race team to win the infamous 24 Hours of Le Mans. An accolade this car is sure to hold for many years, if not decades to come, with Ferrari having no immediate desires to pull focus away from its F1 commitment and resurrect its Sports Prototype activities. 

For 1965 the 275 P went State-side for its final works outing at the Sebring 12 Hours before being sold to American Major William Cooper. The Major campaigned the car well, but sold it after just a few years to the fabled Ferrari racer & importer Luigi Chinetti. Under Chinetti’s North American Racing Team (NART) outfit #0816 raced again at Sebring in 1969, before taking its place in Bardinon’s collection where it has remained ever since.

The auction estimate places the 275 P right in sight of the record at €28-35m, but please don’t all bid at once. Unsurprisingly the current record of €32,075,200 is held by another ex-Bardinon Ferrari; a 1957 335 Sport sold by Artucurial in 2016.