Graham Hill's Matra sells for £6.1m

09th February 2021
Bob Murray

What price for a famous Le Mans winner from the 1970s? Almost 7 million euros, or £6.1m. That’s what’s just been paid in Paris for the Matra MS670 that Henri Pescarolo and Graham Hill brought home first at La Sarthe in 1972, a victory that confirmed Matra as a major player and lifted the spirits of a nation.


A French car hadn’t won the 24 Hours since 1950 so Matra’s victory with the exquisite V12-powered MS670 went down a storm in its home country. As one of the most beloved of French racing machines, the famous blue car was a star exhibit of the Matra museum for many years until its date with the Artcurial auctioneer in the French capital.

It was the first time the race winner had been offered for sale. Artcurial had put a wide estimate on the car, expecting it to make between €4-7.5m, and in the event the hammer fell at €5m, or €6,907,200 when tax and the premium are included. It is a record price for any Matra at auction.


Who bought it? That’s not confirmed but it is known it is going to a private collection and, according to Artcurial, is expected to return to action on the track. That’s great news for surely no follower of endurance racing would pass up a chance to see, and hear, this champion, with its howling V12 engine, in high speed action once more.

British fans as well as French enthusiasts will relish that because on this side of the Channel the MS670’s place in history is just as assured – as the car that gave Graham Hill his sole Le Mans win, and thus secured for him the unique Triple Crown: the F1 World Championship, Le Mans and Indianapolis.


The motorsport theme of the Artcurial sale continued with the sale of a rare collection of Group B rally cars. Star was a 1988 Audi Sport Quattro S1 (€2m) which Artcurial says was over twice its estimate and the highest price paid at auction for a rally car worldwide.

Another rally star, the Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 Evolution, sold for just under a million, a record price for a Peugeot 205, while a 1985 Renault 5 Maxi Turbo became the world’s most expensive Renault 5, selling for €667,520.

Ferrari memorabilia from the Il Cavallino restaurant opposite the factory gates in Maranello was also snapped up. The collection, assembled by Enzo Ferrari’s friend Giuseppe Neri, doubled its estimate to make €900,000 with the top lot being Ferrari’s last F1 V12 engine, mounted on a stand, which found a new owner for €169,000. What a centrepiece for someone’s living room that is going to make!

Images courtesy of Artcurial.

  • Matra

  • MS670

  • Le Mans

  • Le Mans 1972

  • Henri Pescarolo

  • Graham Hill

  • For Sale

  • matra-simca-ms670-le-mans-1972-winner-graham-hill-henri-pescarolo-rainer-schlegelmilch-mi-main-goodwood-21092020.jpg


    Le Mans-winning Matra MS670 to be sold for £3.6m

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    The car that completed Graham Hill’s triple crown

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