A 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato described as 'the most important in history' is set to go under the hammer at a Bonhams auction this summer. Raced by Formula 1 legend Jim Clark, it could become the most expensive British car to ever sell at auction – with an estimated price of over £10m pushing it far beyond the previous record holder, a 'Blower' Bentley which made £5.4m in June 2012.
This example is one of just 19 coachbuilt by Italian design house Zagato. The rarity factor keeps increasing, though, as it's just one of three configured in the ultra-light DP209 specification.
It's unofficially known as '2 VEV' in a nod to its registration, and boasts a 3.7-litre straight-six engine developing around 314bhp.
That gives it impressive performance, even by today's standards – 0-60mph takes 6.1 seconds and top speed is pegged at 153mph.
2 VEV was also involved in one of the most spectacular crashes in motor racing history. In 1962, with Jim Clark at the wheel, it smashed into two Ferrari 250 GTs – now some of the most valuable cars ever made. The scene is one of the most extraordinary images ever captured at a race.
James Knight, group motoring chairman at Bonhams, 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 Aston's estimated £10 million auction value would not make it the most expensive British car ever sold. In August 2017, an Aston Martin DBR1 sold for £17.5m, toppling the previous record of £17m held by a Jaguar D-Type in 2016. However, both of these were offered at auction in the USA, while the DB4GT Zagato will be sold at the Goodwood Festival of Speed later in 2018.