A McLaren F1 Supercar with an estimated value of the equivalent of R148-million is on display at Sotheby's in New York. It will go on auction in August 2015. Image: AP / Seth Wenig
NEW YORK, New York - Car lovers will have a chance to buy a rare McLaren F1 when it is auctioned in California from a collection of some of the world's finest sports and supercars.
The orange 1998 three-seater F1 "LM-Specification" car will be a highlight of The Pinnacle Portfolio sale, a collection of more than 20 post-Second World War cars that is expected to fetch the equivalent of more than R804-million.
The Sotheby's sale will on August 13 at California's Monterey 2015 Classic Car Auctions.
Ian Kelleher, managing director of RM Auctions, claimed: "This is the single largest private collection ever brought to auction."
He expects the McLaren F1 to sell for the equivalent of nearly R150-million.
The collection covers 57 years of automotive history and design; sport and racing automobiles from the 1950's and 60's that include Porsches, Ferraris, a 1993 Jaguar XJ220, Bugatti Veyrons and the final Ferrari Enzo that was given to the late Pope John Paul II.
The collector remains anonymous.
Kelleher said: "In 2014 we sold (the equivalent of) R1.7-billion of cars at Monterey, which was the single largest total for any collector's car auction to then. We expect to eclipse that in August."
'ONLY FIVE BUILT'
The McLaren, on display at Sotheby's HQ in Manhattan, is one of two that were returned to the factory to be upgraded to the Le Mans race specifications.
Kelleher explained: "It was rebuilt almost scratch, making it far superior to the road car - it's basically a road-going race car with all the LM special upgrades."
Only five such McLarens were produced. Each is privately owned.
Kelleher added: "For most other modern cars, there are virtually no other examples even remotely in this price range in terms of collectability and desirability. What makes it unique is that you can drive it."
The 2005 Ferrari Enzo that was given to the late Pope John Paul II by former Ferrari chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo has an inscription under the bonnet and was auctioned on the Pope's behalf with the proceeds going to tsunami victims.
The "bookend" Bugatti Veyrons, chassis numbers 001 and 300, were the first and last of the production run.
CAR-LOVER'S DREAM: This McLaren F1 supercar, along with about 30 other cars, will be auctioned by Sotheby's in California in August 2015. Image: AP / Seth Wenig