£16m auction sees Ferrari 'batmobile' fetch a fortune

An auction in Arizona has seen a stunning 1957 Ferrari 410 Superamerica Scaglietti Coupé sell for $1,815,000 (£1.1m).

The Ferrari, whose stunning rear 'wings' make it look like it was created for Batman himself, is one of only 34 410 Superamericas ever made, imagined and built by Italian coachbuilder and designer Carrozzeria Scaglietti.
The Modena based company is famous for designing and building some of Ferrari's most famous cars, including the legendary 250 GTO.

Scaglietti designed the 410 Superamerica in a way unheard of today. Eponymous company Owner Sergio didn't draw his designs on paper, instead imagining them in his head then setting about making them using steel tubes as frames on which to set and beat the aluminium body panels by hand.

Therefore, no two cars were ever identical, and each of the 34 410 models was commissioned by a wealthy enthusiast. This particular one was ordered by Dottore Enrico Wax, an Italian whose business ventures included importing and selling Johnny Walker whiskey in the '50s.

According to the RM Auctions catalogue listing for the car, when Wax asked Enzo Ferrari himself about ordering a one-off Ferrari, Enzo suggested that Scaglietti could make him a truly unique 410. And so this car, model s/n 0671, was born.

Aside from the distinctive fins, it has a bespoke interior (below) featuring unusual British Smiths instruments, and houses two 50-litre fuel tanks.

Power is from a 340bhp 4.9-litre V12 engine driving the rear wheels through a four-speed manual transmission.

Amazingly though, Wax sold it after about a year, and it was passed between a few owners before being stolen and stripped in the '70s, with the thief selling the body-less chassis and drivetrain to a farmer in Oregon, USA.

It was then that Hollywood TV director and Ferrari collector Greg Garrison (most famous for producing the JFK-Richard Nixon presidential debates in 1960) decided to track the car down and restore it.

Upon discovering the chassis was in Oregon, during the '80s, Garrison put out advertisements offering cash for it. He succeeded, and went to Enzo Ferrari with a plan...

Incredibly, after Enzo authenticated the chassis as original (by looking at a picture that Garrison had taken), he got Sergio Scaglietti involved.

Sergio pulled out the original plans and photographs of the 410 and, determined to restore the car to authentic past glory, arranged for four of the original workers that had bult the car in the '50s - now retired - to come back and set about re-crafting it.

Two years later, in 1990, the car was complete, and it stayed with Garrison until he died in 2005.

It's no wonder, then, that over the weekend it sold for almost $2m, starring in a sale that saw over $25m (£16m) of cars sold.

The second and third most expensive cars of the day were a 1959 BMW 507 Roadster (above) and a Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Spyder, both fetching $990,000 (£640,000), while a Ferrari GT Lusso Berlinetta sold for $979,000 and a 1966 Shelby 427 Cobra (below) went for $880,000.

Other cars sold included a 1958 Porsche 356A 1600 Speedster (below), a 1955 Mercedes-Benz SL 300 Gullwing, a 1968 Aston Martin DB6 and a 1993 Jaguar XJ220S.
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