Way back in 1954, the Ferrari 375-Plus was considered “the ultimate weapon” at the World Sportscar Championship.
The 375-Plus went from 0 to 60 mph in just four seconds. It reached top speeds of 186 mph. One of only five made by the Italian sports car legends, this particular car competed at Le Mans, Silverstone and in the Targa Florio and Mille Miglia races.
The car was so fast it appeared to almost disappear on the track. Then one day it really did disappear. It was stolen. More on that in a minute. First…the fire.
In 1957, the car was damaged by a fire and sold to a nuclear physicist named Karl Kleve.
Kleve stored the car in a container. Here’s where things get really bonkers.
“The scientist kept the car in his massive collection in Ohio but in 1986 a trailer containing the Ferrari – but without some major parts and the engine – was stolen. This kicked off an incredible 25-year investigation involving the FBI, Interpol and, most recently, lawyers.
The thieves, who were later jailed, sold the car to a broker in Atlanta who, in 1989, sold the car to Belgian racing driver Jacques Swaters. Mr Swaters, a close friend of Enzo Ferrari, was initially unaware the Ferrari had been stolen and had it restored in Modena, Italy.
Despite the theft and recovery, the Ferrari was never returned to Mr Kleve and there were years of legal battles on each side of the Atlantic.”
Finally, a settlement was reached, and the most expensive car ever stolen (and burned) will go on the auction block at Bonhams’ Goodwood Festival of Speed sale in Sussex. The car is expected to go for at least $13 million dollars.
Most expensive car ever stolen expected to make £8m at auction [via Western Morning News]