The Mercedes-Benz CLK was never a particularly successful design. If you want to discover it in the Daimler family tree, you have to search carefully.
But there are two models that are a little more useful than the rest of the model range: we are talking about the CLK-GTR. The car with which Mercedes-Benz and the AMG team became active again in motorsport after the end of the DTM 1996.
The first development prototype was based on the McLaren F1 GTR, which was already being used successfully at the time. However, since the line between Mercedes and McLaren was still fresh, one had to buy a used customer's car in Stuttgart.
For homologation purposes, 1999 vehicles were created from 25, divided into 20 closed coupé variants and five roadsters. The latter in particular have rarely seen the public road in their lives, as their regular visits to the auction show with three-digit kilometers on the odometer.
One who has never actually been on the road is now under the hammer in Goodwood this year. A Dutch collector owned the only black-painted roadster since 2002 in the air-conditioned hall.
Has it been worth it so much abstinence? The Bonhams auction house, which is responsible for the sale of the CLK-GTR Roadster, is calling up an estimate of 2 to 2.5 million euros. With a new price of 1.3 million euros at the time, a solid increase in value. However, no such values have been achieved in the past for the roadworthy LeMans racers.
The last successful auction sale dates from 2009 when the dark gray roadster shown here was also sold for 630.000 EUR - and was owned by the Sultan of Brunei and the only right-hand drive roadster. Another roadster with only a good 100km on the odometer in new condition stopped last year at a bid of 1.3 million dollars - the estimated price here was 2.8 million euros.
But that's how it is when the basic vehicle was not really popular: the collectors also adorn themselves. LeMans history back, AMG handcraft V12 ago.
All photos: Bonhams, RM Auctions