Offered in the August 18 Quail Lodge Auction

McLaren Cars Ltd was formed by the TAG/McLaren Group in March 1989. Its purpose-built production facility was adjacent to McLaren International's Woking, England, headquarters, and composite chassis production was set up in nearby Shalford - its showroom situated in London's fashionable Park Lane. The three-year programme to develop the prototypes took its first serious steps forward in 1990, a "finished" prototype was shown in 1992, and the first customer delivery was in January 1994.

In total, 64 road cars were delivered to customers before production ended. McLaren F1 chassis number 044 being offered today, is one of the 64 hallowed legends. This exquisitely maintained, single-owner McLaren F1 was the very first of its type to be imported to the United States, and it was the first of only 7 McLarens to be federalized by experts in the process - Ameritech. As a result of the federalization, 044 is a U.S. road legal car.

044 is the thirty-seventh F1 off the assembly line, sporting the iconic, original Base Silver paint and a black/gray Connolly leather interior, which includes McLaren's signature red coloured panels for the central driver's seat. The car was purchased new by the consignor in July 1996, while on an invitational visit to the factory. Upon purchasing the ultimate road car, the consignor and two of his closest companions went on the ultimate road trip as they toured the European countryside. Beginning at the factory, the trio went to France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Belgium, before returning to the Woking based factory. The trip, which is described by the consignor as the journey of a lifetime, accounts for just about half of the 9,600 miles on the car's odometer. Upon returning to the factory, 044 was treated to its first service by the very same hands that assembled it a short while ago. From the factory, 044 was shipped to New York where Dick Fritz and the Ameritech team took delivery of the car and begun the conversion. Understanding the significance and importance of the McLaren, Ameritech went to great lengths to ensure that during the process no part of the car was physically altered in any way that could not be put back to its 100% original form. After the conversion process was completed and 044 passed all of the necessary tests to gain its compliance, the car was delivered to the consignor where it has been the crown jewel of his East Coast based collection for the past 22 years. All of the Ametitech conversion items have been carefully removed from the vehicle, leaving it in its original, as delivered specification. Every item that was used to federalize the car has been saved and accompanies the sale.

Throughout the car's life, it has been regularly maintained and serviced by BMW North America LLC at the National Workshop-East. In May 2002, with only 7,071 miles on the odometer, 044 received a major service which among many other things, included the replacement of its fuel cell. In October 2009, less than 2,000 miles later, 044 was brought back to BMW for its second major service where at 8,731 miles, the car received its second fuel cell replacement. In July 2017, prior to arriving in California, 044 was sent to McLaren of Philadelphia, where it has once again received a fresh service – the details of the most recent service, as well as all prior services, will be included in the car's extensive list of service receipts.

Accompanying the sale of 044 is its complete tool kit, including the modem used to connect to the factory, full luggage set, special Limited Edition of Doug Nye's opus, Driving Ambition: The Complete Story of the McLaren F1, the F1 AUTO GLYM detailing kit, complete tool roll, mechanics gloves, detailing cloth, car cover, watch, owners books and manuals, a wide assortment of factory documents and materials, and major, original, components that were removed from the car during services such as the fuel cell and tyres.

While many of the road cars have been returned to the factory for new aerodynamic packages or custom interiors, 044 remains unmodified and aside from the parts replaced during its scheduled services, remains as original as it was when it left the factory. Rarely does one of the legendary 64 road cars become available, once an owner experiences its unmatched levels of performance, virtually everything else feels slow and plodding in comparison.

It is as likely that the elements of a pure-blooded racing machine will never be so well integrated into such an ultimately satisfying road car, as it is likely that there will never again be an opportunity to purchase a single owner F1 with the incredible provenance and history of 044.

Related auctions