At a recent Sotheby’s auction, a 1956 Ferrari 290 MM built for the Formula One racing legend Juan Manuel Fangio was sold for 28 million dollars.
Every fanatic car collector has a Ferrari in his garage and if one takes a look at the most expensive cars ever put up for action, the Italian iconic brand is dominating both by number and by value. And if one puts together a very rare Ferrari and a F1 legend’s name, then the price will definitely be skyrocketing. It is exactly what happened last week at a Sotheby’s auction, when a 1956 Ferrari 290 MM, chassis 0626, that was built for Formula One racing legend Juan Manuel Fangio sold for 28 million dollars. Some cars are more special than others and this one is considered the “Holy Grail” of Ferrari motoring.
The 290 MM was built to contest the World Sportscar Championship, which was as important and carried as much weight to Ferrari as its efforts to win the Formula One World Championship.
Enzo convinced the best driver of the era, and, for most, arguably the greatest driver who ever lived, the soon to be five-time World Champion Juan Manuel Fangio, to lead the team in his latest and greatest creation. With that, so it was that Fangio and the 290 MM came together with the sole purpose of securing the 1956 World Sportscar Championship for the Maranello Scuderia.
During the 1956 Mille Miglia, the third round of the World Sportscar Championship, Fangio was allocated chassis number 0626, a car that was specifically built with him and exactly the car sold at the auction. Dressed in the unique factory Argentinian color scheme for Fangio, the car featured a totally new 3.5-liter V-12 engine and was one of only four 290 MMs to be built. Furthermore, it was one of the first Ferraris raced in Europe by Phil Hill and also heralded the beginning of Wolfgang von Trips’ Ferrari-driving career. It was famously piloted to victory in the 1957 Buenos Aires 1000 KM by Eugenio Castellotti, Luigi Musso, and Masten Gregory. During its illustrious career, 0626 was also campaigned by other legendary names including Alfonso de Portago, Peter Collins, Olivier Gendebien, and Joakim Bonnier.