Bonhams was anticipating stellar results at its Goodwood Festival of Speed vintage car sale, and the auction house wasn’t disappointed. A 1929 ‘Birkin’ 4 1/2 –litre Bentley became, at $7.9m, the most expensive British car ever sold at auction. Close behind was the record $7.4m that a buyer paid for “The Corgi,” a 1912 Rolls-Royce ‘Silver Ghost’ Double Pullman Limousine. All told, the 20th anniversary sale in the Uk brought in $34.5m.
The ’29 Bentley, which sold for $1.6m over its high estimate, was from the famed collection of watchmaker George Daniels, whose 1932 Alfa Romeo 8C-2300 Spider Lungo achieved the June 29th sale’s third highest price of $4.2m. The previous record holder for a British car was a 1904 Rolls Royce, which sold for $5.5m in 2007. Bonhams did not release the identity of the ‘Birkin’ Bentley buyer, who submitted the winning bid by phone.