Comedian Rowan Atkinson is known for a few things, including his hilarious portrayals of Mr Bean and Blackadder. But he's also known for having impeccable taste in cars – as evidenced by his ownership of spectacular motors such as the McLaren F1, Aston Martin DB2,Honda NSX and 1939 BMW 328.
But now, Atkinson appears to be downsizing his fleet. Having recently sold a limited-edition Land Rover Defender Heritage with auction house Silverstone Auctions, he's now trusted it to sell two more of his cars. They are a 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E and a rare 1989 Lancia Thema.
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Both are described as being in 'outstanding condition', as you'd expect from a petrolhead of Atkinson's calibre. The Mercedes' is actually the comedian's second – a rare, hand-built car that he purchased in 2015. It's powered by a 5.0-litre V8 engine.
It's fitted with cloth upholstery – preferred by Atkinson over the usual leather. It has walnut detailing and a leather steering wheel, while the exterior is a discreet silver.
Joining the Merc is Atkinson's other classic – a series I Lancia Thema 8.32. There are less than 20 Series 1 Themas currently registered, according to the DVLA, making this a seriously rare car.
Fitted with the 32-valve V8 engine from the Ferrari 328, the Thema is an incredible Q-car – with massive performance in a discreet saloon body. It's been in Atkinson's hands for the past seven years, and is once again in immaculate condition – without so much as a crease in the beige velour upholstery.
Nick Whale, managing director at Silverstone Auctions, said: "We're honoured that Rowan is once again entrusting his cars to Silverstone Auctions, this time with two much-loved models.
"Both are particularly fine examples of their marque and built in low numbers in left-hand drive only, offering the opportunity to own a modern classic with a distinguished past, possibly for a bargain price."
Both cars are offered for sale without reserve, and will be auctioned off at Silverstone Auctions Race Retro Classic Car Sale on February 24-25.