The Ferrari 550 Maranello that took overall victory at the Total 24 Hours of Spa in 2004 has been sold at auction for $4.29m (€3.6m).
Originally built by Prodrive in 2001, the historic Italian machine set a new world record for a car sold in an online auction when was purchased during the RM Sotheby’s Shift/Monterey sale. Prior to this, it had been displayed at the most recent Rétromobile classic car show in Paris.
After initially racing in America, the car was purchased by BMS Scuderia Italia in 2002 and entered into a golden age of GT1 racing in Europe. It scored four FIA GT Championship wins that season and another in 2003, when it also won its class at Spa but missed out on overall honours as the second-tier Freisinger Porsche took a famous victory.
Its finest hour came in 2004 when the Ferrari 550 Maranello conquered the Belgian endurance classic at its third attempt. Fabrizio Gollin, Luca Cappellari, Enzo Calderari and Lilian Bryner steered it to victory, the latter making history as the first woman to win a major 24-hour race. The car entered a further four FIA GT events in 2005 before being retired from competitive duties.
In total the 550 Maranello was entered in 49 races, taking 15 pole positions, 14 overall wins and 29 podiums. Victory at Spa in 2004 also gives it the notable distinction of being the only Ferrari to score overall honours in a major 24-hour race during the 21st century.