Anyone capable of buying a one-of-a-kind hypercar is willing to pay a king’s ransom for it. However, is that level of exclusivity worth almost $19 million? A well-heeled Bugatti enthusiast thinks so.
Bugatti introduced La Voiture Noire, which is French for “the black car,” to the world earlier this week at the Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland. Even before the cover was pulled back on this one-off black-on-black beauty, it was sold to an unnamed individual for an incredible €16.7 million, or $18.9 million (that’s $12.5 million for the car, plus another $6.4 million in local and luxury taxes). Bugatti refused to identify the buyer but said it is someone with an enormous attachment to the brand.
Until now, the Rolls Royce Sweptail, a $13 million one-off coupe that a customer commissioned from the ground up, was thought to be the most expensive new car ever built.
The most expensive car ever sold is thought to be the 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO that won the Tour de France in 1964. It came in fourth overall the same year at Le Mans. It is a 174-mph road-legal race car and one of only 36 built between 1962 and 1964. David MacNeil, chief executive of the automotive accessory maker WeatherTech, purchased it for a reported £52 million, or $70 million.
A coupe with the comfort of a luxury limousine and muscle of a hypercar, La Voiture Noire, the French automaker says, is a modern interpretation of the legendary Bugatti Type 57 SC Atlantic, which celebrates its 80th anniversary this year. Only four were ever made of that car, which was designed by Jean Bugatti, son of Bugatti founder Ettore Bugatti, and today only three remain. (The fourth seems to have disappeared shortly before the German invasion of France during World War II. Its whereabouts are unknown.) Moreover, only two are 100% original (clothing designer Ralph Lauren repainted his a non-Bugatti color), making them among the most valuable cars in the world.