A new record amount has just been paid for one of the most sought-after race cars ever.
Anytime a classic Ford GT40 goes up on the auction block, interested buyers are strongly advised to have a healthy bank account. As we all know, original GT40s don't come cheap and certainly not one used as the camera car for the classic Steve McQueen film "Le Mans". This 1968 GT40 Gulf/Mirage Lightweight, model number P/1074, has just been sold for a record $11 million at the RM auction at Pebble Peach. Before its film work, this GT40 had its debut at Spa in 1967 where it finished first overall.
This was also the first win for any car wearing the powered blue and marigold Gulf livery. The following year the car was sent to England where it underwent several changes due to new FIA regulations. It was there that it was designated as P/1074 and was the first of three lightweight racing GT40's built for the J.W.A./Gulf team. It continued to win on the racing circuit until 1970 when it was sold to a guy named David Brown from Tampa, Florida. He then leased it to Steve McQueen's production company and, once again under the care of J.W.A., was used as a mobile camera car for McQueen's motorsport feature film.
Because McQueen wanted the cars filmed at it speed, the camera car itself had to be extremely fast. However, P/1074's roof was removed entirely for five months of camera work. This resulted in the car's aerodynamics and structural rigidity being damaged. After being sold a few more times, it was completely restored back to its original condition with the roof back in place. Its $11 million sale last week surpassed the previous record holder, a 1931 Duesenberg Model J Long-Wheelbase Coupe, which went for $10.34 million last year at Pebble Beach.
Be sure to check out the RM auction-produced video profile of this GT40 for even more details on its historical importance.