A classic from the Mercedes-Benz collection is the most expensive car in the world. A private buyer paid a record price for the 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé at an auction. Daimler already has plans with the money.
Mercedes-Benz only made two prototypes of the 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé. Both of the sports cars, named after their creator and chief engineer Rudolf Uhlenhaut, were previously in the car manufacturer's historical collection. For a good cause, however, he parted with one of the models. It was worth it. The rarity achieved a top bid of 135 million euros at an auction. It's the most valuable car of all time, said Daimler. The 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé with the characteristic gullwing doors is considered a milestone in sports car history.
The auction took place on May 5, 2022 in the Mercedes-Benz Museum. Partner was the auction house RM Sotheby's. Among others, selected Mercedes-Benz customers as well as international car and art collectors were invited. The bidding war may have been fueled by the immaculate condition of the almost 70-year-old sports car. The auctioned 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé was part of the non-public vehicle collection of Mercedes-Benz Classic. It includes more than 1,100 vehicles, from the invention of the automobile in 1886 to the present day.
The identity of the highest bidder remained secret. According to Mercedes-Benz, it is a private person. The private buyer has agreed to make the 300 SLR Uhlenhaut Coupé available to the public on special occasions even after the sale. The second original 300 SLR Coupé remains in the company's possession and will continue to be exhibited at the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart, it said in the press release for the auction.
The carmaker wants to use the proceeds from the auction to set up a climate protection fund that will finance education and research grants for young people worldwide. With the 'Mercedes-Benz Fund' we want to encourage a new generation to follow in the innovative footsteps of Rudolf Uhlenhaut and to develop great new technologies, especially for decarbonization and resource conservation, said Ola Källenius, CEO of the Mercedes-Benz Group Inc. According to the information, the money from the auction serves as start-up capital, and the group will contribute additional funds in the coming years.