The Gordon Murray-designed McLaren F1 held the record for the world’s fastest production car for seven years at 389km/h, but the F1’s status as one of the all-time great cars isn’t just from the unbelievable performance stats. There was the central driver’s position in the three-seat cockpit, just ahead of a stunning 627hp 6.1-litre BMW naturally aspirated V12 engine, the amazing looks, or the stunning 1995 Le Mans 24 Hour victory against purpose-built race cars.
Between 1993 and 1998 only 106 of the super-advanced F1s were made, with 69 road cars, 28 race-only F1 GTR models, six F1 LM road/track models, and three long-tail F1 GT models. With a price tag of $1,000,000 when new the F1s were only bought by seriously wealthy driving enthusiasts
Prices for the car many experts believe is the ultimate driver’s car, and the peak of the original supercar era, have exploded in recent years. The record for an F1 sold at a public auction goes to chassis #044, one of seven US-legal F1s, sold for an eye-watering US$15,620,000 at the 2017 Bonhams Quail Lodge auction.
That car had particularly low mileage, and other F1s have sold between US$8,000,000 and US$13,500,000. Several LM and GTR models have sold privately in the last few years, with the race examples rumoured to have exceeded US$25,000,000 each.
Australia has been home to at least three McLaren F1s over the years, all regular production road cars. Given the F1’s newfound status as the most collectable car of the modern era it now enjoys a worldwide market for what has to be considered the greatest supercar of the 20th Century.