A 1934 Bugatti Type 59 sports car once owned by former Belgian monarch King Leopold III was auctioned in London on Saturday evening for £9.535 million (€10.7 million), including the auction house’s sales commission.
The pre-commission price was £8.5 million (€9.53 million).
This is a new record for a Bugatti, according to the auction house, Gooding & Company of the United Kingdom.
The model was a top performer among non-standard race cars before World War II. It was part of the Bugatti team for the 1934-1935 auto Grand Prix championships, winning the Spa Grand Prix with René Dreyfus at the wheel.
Bugatti then transformed it into a sports car, with a new gearbox along with a better adapted chassis and bodywork, painted it black and sold it in 1937 to Leopold III, an ardent fan of the brand.
It then changed hands four times, but was never modified.
According to Gooding & Company, the 57248 (chassis number) is without a doubt the most important and authentic of all the Bugatti race cars.
The auction, which took place at 6.00 p.m. at the English castle of Hampton Court, featured a total of 15 historic vehicles.