Ferrari entered the 1953 24 Hours of Le Mans with three 340/375 MM race cars . One of these three units was auctioned by RM Auctions at the 2013 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este for a total of €9,856,000 - about 12.7 million at the current exchange rates. Sounds like a good day at the auction for Ferrari, except that it also sold a 288 GTO, a F40, a F50, a Enzo and a 599XX track car. But the the biggest haul still came from the 375 MM, despite RM’s estimates that it would only be sold for the half the price it went for.
Apparently, three wealthy individuals really wanted the car and as everybody knows when there’s a bidding itch among people with deep pockets, the price tends to go up a notch. In the end, the car went to a guy from U.K. who, incidentally, also owns a 250 GTO.
This particular 375 MM has quite an impressive background: it participated at the 24 Hour of Spa, the Carrera Panamericana, and won the 12 Hours of Pescara. The car was driven by three World Champions: Hawthorn, Ascari, and Farina.
Click past the jump to read more about the 1953 Ferrari 340/375 MM Berlinetta.
The Ferrari 375 MM Spider by Pininfarina was powered by a 4.5-liter V-12 engine that pumps out a massive 340 horsepower - or about 100 horsepower more than any other WSC racer in the 1950s.
The engine was equipped with triple Weber 40 IF/4C carburettors and was mated to a four-speed manual gearbox, independent front suspension with transverse leaf springs, live axle with parallel trailing arms and semi-elliptic leaf springs, four-wheel drum brakes, and tubular steel frame.
The 375 MM could sprint from 0 to 100 mph time of just 11.5 seconds and up to a top speed of 180 mph.