Bernie denies buying Ayrton’s car for €4.19m

Ayrton Senna driving the McLaren MP4-8 during practice for the 1993 British Grand Prix. Photo: Martin Lee
Ayrton Senna driving the McLaren MP4-8 during practice for the 1993 British Grand Prix. Photo: Martin Lee

A 1993 McLaren Formula One car raced by the late Brazilian world champion Ayrton Senna sold for €4.19 million at an auction in Monaco on the eve of the Historic Grand Prix.

The auctioneers did not say who the buyer was for the Ford Cosworth-powered MP4/8A car, with the €4,197,500 price including the buyer’s premium. Bonhams said it was sold after a “lengthy and spirited bidding exchange”. Early media reports said the buyer was Bernie Ecclestone, but he later denied the report. The former Formula One supremo has an extensive collection of historic racing cars.

The McLaren was the last Formula One car raced in the Monaco Grand Prix in May 1994, and took Senna to his record sixth win in the Principality.

Bonhams said the fully-functional car, with the original V8 engine and gearbox, was the most historically important Formula One McLaren had ever presented at auction. Senna’s first Monaco car, a 1984 Toleman-Hart TG184, also sold at the “Les Grandes Marques a Monaco” auction for €1.6 million.


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