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Tony O'Kane | May 20, 2008

A classic 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder has broken the record for the most expensive car sold at auction after it was snapped up by radio DJ Chris Evans for a whopping EUR 7,040,000 (equivalent to AUD $11,424,302) on the weekend - a huge amount of money for a car with a 280hp 3-litre V12 and a leaf-spring rear suspension.

The 250 GT's estimated value prior to auction was a 'mere' EUR 3,200,000 - 3,600,000 - around half the amount of the winning bid. RM Auctions, who oversaw the auction for the car, are no doubt rubbing their hands in glee after the momentous sale, but it's somewhat puzzling how this car managed to rewrite the record books. After all, last year it was tipped that the last surviving Auto-Union D-Type race car would claim the record for most expensive car, and that car had history - it was originally commissioned by Adolf Hitler as a working example of Nazi Germany's technological superiority. Sure, the Ferrari 250 GT SWB also has an interesting story behind it - it was originally owned by actor James Coburn - but can it really compare to a car that was built at the request of the most evil man of the 20th Century? According to Chris Evans, the answer is yes.

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