The original Batmobile driven by Adam West in the 1960s television series sold at the January Barrett Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Ariz. for a whopping $4.6 million. Despite the hefty price tag, the superhero sedan does not even qualify as one of the top ten most expensive vehicles ever sold. The avid car collector with the bank account to back it up would not blink twice anyway for a chance to own one or even all of them. Just the auto insurance necessary to road test one of these wallet-whittling beasts would likely add a few thousand more to their final price tags.
1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa
Known as the "666" because of its factory serial number, the Testa Rossa is by far the Italian automaker's most prized creation. The 300-horsepower V-12 work-of-art sold for $16,390,000 in August of 2011 at the Gooding and Company auction in Monterey, Calif. This was only two years after the "714" sold for €9,020,000 (about $12 million) at the Ferrari Leggenda e Passione auction in Italy. McKeel Hagerty, president of Hagerty Collector Car Insurance, told CNN that this "666" was the highest price paid for a car at auction, but other Ferraris have sold privately for almost twice that amount.
1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder
The $10,894,900 British radio personality Chris Evans paid for the California Spyder in May of 2008 was not only a record at the time, but also rounded out Ferrari's stranglehold on the top three highest-auctioned cars ever. Autoblog.com said Evans could have gotten the car for far less than he paid, since the auctioneer valued the Spyder at about half the final sale price. The website conceded, however, that Evans paid what he felt was necessary to win the Ferrari formerly owned by actor James Coburn.
1931 Duesenberg Model J Murphy-Bodied Coupe
The first non-sports car to make the list, The Model J was the automobile of choice for both James Cagney and Clark Gable. The Duesenberg, sold at the same California auction as the aforementioned Testa Rossa, for $10,340,000, was once owned by millionaire George Whittell Jr. Those who have driven a Duesenberg say the large passenger coupes drive like trucks.
1937 Mercedes-Benz 540K Special Roadster
There may be only three of these luxury roadsters still in existence, and collector Sam Mann is one of the lucky owners. The 3.8-liter, 180 horsepower rarity sold for $9,680,000 in 2011, nearly nine years after one sold in Arizona for one-third that price. Mann's new baby is a globetrotter, making stops across Europe and Australia, before finding a home in the East Coast millionaire's collection.
A country boy from Ohio, Jeremy is a freelance writer and graduate student.