Although the classic car market seems temporarily stagnant, there is no shortage of buyers for the right cars. In this case, the right car was a 1957 Ferrari 335 S Spider, bodied by Scaglietti and belonging to the Bardinon Collection. It was just auctioned by Artcurial at Retromobile for a near-record $35.7 million.

While this sum is a record in Artcurial’s home currency of Euros, adjusted for exchange to US Dollars, it falls short of the ’62-’63 Ferrari GTO that crossed the block in 2014. Regardless, it is a record for Artcurial and a European sale.

There are a few questions that immediately spring to mind when considering such an amazing car and the money exchanged. Ultimately however, as at the bottom end of the market, the question is about value.

Unlike the bottom end of the market though, value isn’t established in such a car by ensuring that the price is low compared to other examples, as there are no directly comparable examples. This is a car representing the state-of-the art when manufactured, built by hand alongside a handful of similar cars, all of which varied and was raced by different people with varying success over a number of years.

Who were the racers? Well, the list is one of distinction and includes: Peter Collins, Maurice Trintignant, Wolfgang von Trips, Mike Hawthorn, Luigi Musso, Masten Gregory, Stirling Moss and Lance Reventlow. This 335S is also partially responsible for helping Scuderia Ferrari win the World Constructors’ Title in 1957.

It also found its way into Pierre Bardinon’s collection, renowned for its singular focus on the finest racing Ferraris. Simply put, there isn’t another car, Ferrari or otherwise, that combines this car’s blend of beauty, scarcity, documented history, racing success and provenance. This car is effectively one of one.

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