An Aston Martin DB4 GT is set to become the most expensive British car ever offered at a European auction.
Going under the hammer in July, the 1961 Zagato ‘2 VEV’ example of the classic car is understood to be worth up to a staggering £15 million.
Just 19 models of the Zagato were made, but this particular car was one of just two lightweight examples optimised for competition, and one of only three configured in the ultra-light DP209 specification.
It has a slightly different silhouette to the standard DB4 GT Zagato, with a lowered roof line, recessed headlights and more streamlined wings.
To top it off, it was also driven by the legendary racer, and two-time Formula 1 world champion Jim Clark and comes from long-term, single-family ownership of nearly 50 years. These are attributes that none of the other 18 DB4GT Zagatos can boast, auctioneers Bonhams says.
The ’2 VEV’ raced internationally throughout 1961-62 against rival Ferrari 250 GT SWB and Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinettas, vehicles which now count amongst the most valuable cars in the world.
Clark most notably drove ’2 VEV’ for John Ogier and Aston Martin in the RAC Tourist Trophy race at Goodwood where, in 1962, he became involved in a multi-car accident.
Just after re-joining the race following a pit stop, Clark spun at Madgwick Corner in the path of race leader John Surtees’ 250 GTO. The two cars collided and crashed into the safety bank, only to be joined a few laps later by Robin Benson’s 250 GT SWB which careered into both of them. The scene, involving three of the most valuable 1960s cars in today’s market, has become an iconic image.
1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato '2 VEV' is to be offered – absolutely fresh from 47 years in single- family ownership – at Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale on 13 July https://t.co/UA5WtRuM7z pic.twitter.com/cuc4ksFYBs
— BONHAMS (@bonhams1793) February 8, 2018
The car later achieved success in historic racing throughout the 1980s and 90s campaigned by Roger St John Hart. Its racing career has taken a gentler pace since a full Aston Martin factory restoration in the mid-90s, but it remains ready for track action.
James Knight, motoring chairman, said: “Bonhams is absolutely delighted to be bringing this landmark vehicle to auction, which continues our history of offering the world’s most important and celebrated sports and collectors’ motor cars to market.
“It is, by some distance, the most valuable British motor car ever to be offered at a European auction, and we look forward to seeing what the future holds for this historically significant vehicle.”
The car will go under the hammer at the Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale on July 13.