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1-of-1: 1995 McLaren F1

Automotive records are made to be broken, although some, it would seem, may live forever. Gordon Murray conceived the McLaren F1 to be the best and fastest Supercar ever created, and while faster production cars have since emerged, the F1 holds a record that may never be broken. The company only produced 106 examples of the F1, and this example is a genuine 1-of-1 example. It is in as-new condition, and it needs to find a new home. It is listed for sale here at Gooding & Company and is set to go under the hammer in Pebble Beach, California, between August 13th and 14th. I have to say a huge thank you to Barn Finder Mitchell G for referring one of the most exotic motor vehicles of all time to us.

Gordon Murray is renowned for his lateral thinking, and his list of successful Formula One designs is the envy of many within the sport. He envisaged the F1 as a “no-compromises” car that would be the fastest and best vehicle to grace our roads. The body design was produced by Peter Stevens and featured smooth and flowing lines and made effective use of ground effects to generate ground-hugging downforce. This car is Chassis #29 and was the 25th road car produced by the company. Its 1-of-1 status is confirmed because it is the only example finished in the shade called “Creighton Brown.” Not only is this a unique color, but it was named in honor of Creighton Brown, who was one of the driving forces behind the development of the F1. Its presentation is flawless, which is hardly surprising since it has spent its life in a private Japanese collection, and has a mere 390 kilometers (242 miles), showing on its odometer. The paint shines beautifully, while the magnificent and unique 17″ wheels are perfect. If a potential buyer is searching for an F1 in as-new condition, this car would seem to fit that description.

Murray’s vision of the F1 broke new ground in many areas, but the most obvious of these was cockpit design. It doesn’t feel right to use the word “quirky” when describing a vehicle of this type, but it is the word that seems to best suit this interior. Where most Supercars are strictly two-seaters, the McLaren has space for three. This was achieved by placing the driver’s seat in the vehicle’s center, with a passenger seat on either side and just rearward of this position. This configuration provided the driver with the best level of peripheral vision and also offered a driving experience that was as close to imitating that of an open-wheel racing car as was legally allowed on our roads. The interior of this F1 is as faultless as you might expect in a car that has so few miles on the clock. The two-tone brown leather upholstery shows no evidence of wear or problems, while the carpet and dash are just as impressive. The attention to detail is incredible, and you will struggle to find any steel components inside this McLaren. The seat frames and dash are constructed from composite materials, while the pedals are machined from titanium. McLaren even commissioned Kenwood to develop a lightweight stereo for the F1 so that occupants could have in-car entertainment without compromising weight or performance. One nod to luxury is the inclusion of air conditioning. That is probably a blessing for the driver, as they are located about as far from the windows and fresh air as it is possible to get in any road car.

To create the ultimate road car, McLaren worked with its technical partners to create the ultimate production engine. As a result, we lift the hood to reveal a mid-mounted V12 engine produced by BMW. Gordon Murray once again had some specific design parameters for their engine partner to consider, and the most important of these was that the powerplant had to be normally aspirated. Forced induction would have potentially opened a pathway to greater engine power, but it brought compromises on packaging and cooling and possible reliability issues. The mid-mounted BMW V12 has a capacity of 6,064cc and produces an incredible 618hp. All of that power has to find its way to the road, and it does so via the rear wheels and a 6-speed manual transaxle. Murray was fixated on removing every excess ounce of weight from his creation, and as such, the F1 tips the scales at a mere 2,341lbs. Combine that weight with all of that power, and the resulting performance is brain-bending. Point the McLaren at a ¼-mile, and the journey will be over in 10.5 seconds. If the driver is willing to hold the foot to the floor, the F1 should eventually reach an incredible 221mph. However, a production F1 with its rev limiter removed was officially clocked at 240mph in 1993, making it the fastest production car in the world. It held the record until 2005, when the Bugatti Veyron took its place. Remember me mentioning how some records may live forever? The F1 still has one crucial claim to fame. Several production cars have eclipsed its top speed, but all of these have featured engines with superchargers and/or turbochargers. That makes the F1 the fastest normally-aspirated production road car in history. With the evolving performance car scene and the advent of hybrid technology, it is a record that it could potentially retain forever. The engine bay of this McLaren presents superbly, which is no great surprise. It is worth noting that even though the car has a genuine 390 kilometers on its odometer, it has been meticulously maintained. That means that if the buyer is keen to add to that total, this F1 should be ready to deliver.

When McLaren unveiled the F1, it rewrote the rulebook on vehicle design and performance. It was built in limited numbers, and it took the might of the automotive giant that is the Volkswagen Group more than a decade to unseat it from its throne as the world’s fastest production car. However, it still holds two claims to fame. The first is its crown as the fastest normally aspirated road car ever built. The second is how it rates as an investment. If you happened to have a cool $970,000 burning a hole in your wallet back in 1995, you could’ve parked this F1 in your garage when it was shiny and new. If you want to park it in that same spot today, you’ll probably need around $13,000,000 at your disposal. That’s a lot of money, but the reality is that you are getting a lot of performance potential and automotive history for that figure. That’s why I won’t be surprised if this McLaren finds itself headed to a new home after the Pebble Beach auction.


  1. CCFisher

    I can’t imagine a vehicle where a “1 of 1” assertion is less relevant than it is here. Imagine going to a Concours d’Elegance on a prestigious golf course, seeing a red McLaren F1, and thinking, “Meh, there were ten of those built. I want to see that 1 of 1 brown car.”

    Like 17
  2. stephen smith

    Actual current price is in the $16M range. Just replacing the4 windshield is about $30,000. Only one service center in the US for this car. The diagnostic computer is a dos based laptop.

    Like 5
  3. printer1965

    So, what was the “record that may never be broken”?

    Like 2
  4. Terrry

    “ran when parked” aptly applies here.

    Like 3
  5. Karl

    Oh my gosh what an incredible piece of both performance and history! Not mention it’s about as beautiful as it gets! AMAZING virtually beyond words.

    Like 5
  6. BTG88

    Hagerty is pricing these at an average price of $22 million, so the $13 million cited would be a bargain.

    Like 2
    • Mitchell Gildea Member

      “Bargain” being a loose term here but I get what you’re saying

      Like 2
  7. JoeNYWF64

    Does that steering wheel have an air bag in it?
    Long reach to pay a toll.
    Can’t be many cars where the driver sits in the middle – only other car i seen like that is the Ford FX Atmos, but that had no drivetrain.
    Surprising the new corvette weighs a lot more 3,535 to 3,637 lbs.
    than this car.

    Like 0
  8. Howie Mueler

    Leno has had $20 million offers on his, so this with the low miles should be at least $25 million.

    Like 7
    • Steveo

      I’d rather have an ex-Leno car than a 1 of 1 brown car, especially if I intended to enjoy it by driving it.

      Like 0
  9. Gary

    Rather depressing if you ask me. There are better ways to spend this kind of money.

    Like 4
    • Scott Member

      I am sure there is someone out there that could say that about almost anything you purchase. As always, it is subjective to the individual.

      Like 5
      • Gary

        Use your imagination Scott.

        Like 1
  10. pebblebeachjudge

    I am glad it has a lightweight Kenwood radio. Nope, no Boom Box here. Now were talking. I am just way to old school. Plus, I don’t get it. Old technology, use to be the fastest, a BMW engine. Beautiful little car, but there are PLENTY beautiful little cars, many build by promoters. Call this McLaren a Bitcoin substitute, a billionairie’s space folly, a guy to afraid to drive it over 300 kilometers. Is this really an Icon car? Pull the value away, the blue jean owners club, investors and you have the same reasoning that people raise their own bids at auctions.

    Like 3
  11. Araknid78

    These things look scary fast.

    Like 2
  12. Valentine

    The nearly-absurd single-mindedness of this car places it in a class of its own. The weight-conscious build resulted in a car that’s not only fast but looks it by virtue of clean, uncluttered lines. There’s no other ultracar quite like it. The Veyron may have outrun it, but the Bug will never be fast enough to outrun its bag-ugly looks.

    I can never have an F1, but I’d die happy given 20 minutes driving one.

    Like 0
  13. angliagt angliagt

    While driving through Roanoke,Virginia on my way to work
    one morning,I saw a McLeran (U Haul type) truck going the other way.
    That’s something you don’t see every day……

    Like 1
  14. Mark T Rosendahl

    And how does this qualify as a “barn find”?

    Like 2
  15. Araknid78

    Sold for $20,465,000

    Like 1

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