Will the new owner use it, or put it in a collection?
Yesterday, one of Michael Schumacher's most successful F1 cars officially broke the record for the highest price ever for an ex-F1 car when his F2003-GA went under the hammer for the equivalent of $14.87 million - more than eight times the value of a brand-new Monza SP1. The car in question was the one Schumacher won five Grands Prix with during the 2003 season.
The previous record also belonged to a Schumacher car, which sold for $7.5 million, which was even more successful than the F2003-GA, winning nine races.
The new record car, which sold at an RM Sotheby's auction in Geneva, Switzerland, had an illustrious career with the seven-time world champion. It scored three pole positions, set three fastest laps, and gained two additional podium finishes in addition to its five wins.
There are a few things that make the F2003-GA a bit more special than the average F1 car.
First, there's the obvious Schumacher connection. This particular car is one of only four Schumacher-era Ferrari Formula 1 chassis with five wins or more in a World Championship-winning season. Chassis 229 is by far the most successful of the six F2003-GAs built, adding more value. It has also been driven by two generations of Schumacher F1 drivers, as Michael's son Mick recently took it out for a spin around Fiorano.
Secondly, there's the GA behind its name. Ferrari started the 2003 season with the F2003 and won only one out of the four races early in the season. Ferrari introduced a massive upgrade package at the fifth round of the 2003 championship in Spain and called it the GA. The GA in the name was added as a sign of respect to Gianni Agnelli, the CEO of Fiat, who had died in January of that year. Agnelli loved Ferraris and owned the only factory-built Testarossa Spider.
Finally, this is a pre-hybrid era car with an automatic gearbox controlled via the now-famous steering wheel paddles. In 2004, the FIA banned automatic gearboxes, and drivers had to control the clutch via a paddle on the steering wheel.
But best of all is the naturally aspirated 3.0-liter V10 F1 engine, which only has 148 miles on it. The engine spins to 19,000 rpm and produces 833 horsepower. The car was overhauled in 2022 by the Ferrari Formula 1 Clienti department.
As for the most impressive Schumacher F1 car we mentioned earlier, it has to be the F2004. Schumacher scored his seventh and final world championship and 13 out of 18 possible victories in that car. It must be worth at least $30 million.
It was sold to a private buyer in 2005, just one year after the season. At the time, it was also a record-breaking sale, but its owner only paid $3.3 million. Talk about a solid investment.