The remains of the 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Spider Series car auctioned by RM Sotheby’s.
Matt Jelonek/ Getty Images
The rusted shell of a Ferrari race car was sold for about $1.9 million to an undisclosed buyer.It was once part of a rare 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Spider Series I, one of only 13 ever made. It was being sold alongside 19 other Ferraris that had sat in a barn for 45 years.
The rusted shell of an old Ferrari recently sold at a Sotheby’s auction for almost $1.9 million.
The dented lump of metal may not look like much now, but it was once a 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Spider Series I, the second of just 13 that were made.
Known by its chassis number 0406 MD, the lighter, four-cylinder car was designed for winding tracks that lacked long straights.
It was raced by one of Ferrari’s “most significant” drivers of that era, Franco Cortese, who took it to a 19th overall and 2nd in class finish at the April 1954 Coppa della Toscana, the Sotheby’s listing says.
The vehicle eventually made its way to the US in 1958, where it suffered a dramatic crash and fire damage in the 1960s.
The Mondial then ended up in the hands of Florida real-estate developer and Ferrari collector Walter Medlin in 1978, who kept it in storage for 45 years.
In 2004, a hurricane tore through the barn where Medlin kept the vehicle alongside 19 other Ferraris, Autoweek reported.
Beams and storm debris came crashing down, shattering windshields and damaging roofs of the rare cars.
Nevertheless, it was still a remarkable collection and “the mother lode of barn finds,” as Tom Cotter, an author of books on classic car discoveries, told Autoweek.
Known as the “Lost and Found collection,” all 20 cars were auctioned this week during Monterey Car Week.
Sotheby’s wrote that the item was a “prime candidate for an intriguing restoration project.”
“There is no denying that 0406 MD will require a comprehensive restoration to return the car to the condition of its glory days. But for the future caretaker with the proper vision and resources, the journey to renewal promises to be a very rewarding process,” the listing says.
The buyer has not been disclosed.