A classic Ford GT40 supercar designed to surpass its Ferrari counterparts is expected to fetch a staggering £1.8m at auction.
The striking 1967 Ford GT40 Mk supercar was a road-legal version of the all-conquering Le Mans racer - which beat Ferrari four years running at the famous event. There are just 31 road models in existence, with many regarding it as one of the company’s finest achievements over its 109-year history.
This particular model, offered with an estimate of £1.8m, is set to send collectors into a frenzy when it goes under the hammer in California in August. The Ford is fitted with a 4.7-litre Mustang-derived V8 engine which developed 335bhp when it left the factory in 1967.
This gave the Ford GT40 - which stood for Grand Touring and 40-inches high - a 0-60mph time of 5.3 seconds and a top speed of 165mph.
It is claimed this model, which has had just two private owners, boasts one of the lowest mileages of all GT40s, having covered only 4,749 miles from new.
"A time-capsule example, [this] ticks all the boxes when it comes to collectability,” said Mike Fairbairn, co-founder of RM Auctions. “Not only is it extraordinarily rare, it has desirable low mileage, exceptional documentation, and boasts just two private owners from new.
"It will no doubt command the attention of the most passionate sports car collectors, promising its next owner a warm reception at the world’s top vintage touring and racing events and even Concours d’Elegance."
The car harks back to the days in which Ford entered Le Mans with the hope of beating Ferrari at its own game - which they managed by winning four consecutive titles between 1966 and 1969. RM Auctions will also be auctioning off a Le Mans-competing Ford GT40 - although they are keeping a guide price on the model under wraps.
"The legendary Ford GT40 is without doubt one of the most celebrated and sought after motor cars ever built,” said Shelby Myers, managing director of RM California. “Both aesthetically and competitively, it remains a highpoint in the history of American racing and sports car design.
"To have the honour of offering one GT40 is a great privilege, but to present two, spanning both sides of GT40 production, is extremely exciting."