TUCSON, Arizona – Adolf Hitler’s “Super Mercedes” will be put up for sale on Jan. 17 during a classic automobile auction in Scottsdale, Arizona, and – if a buyer is found – part of the funds collected will be used for educational ends.
Worldwide Auctioneers confirmed that one of the items to be auctioned off is an armor-plated Mercedes-Benz 770K Grosser Offener Tourenwagen manufactured especially for Hitler and seized by the US Army in 1945 at the end of World War II.
The auction house’s co-founder – Rod Egan – said in a press release that he and his colleagues were well aware of the responsibility that finding a buyer for a piece of history such as the car confers upon them.
“The car by itself, without the history that it has, is a very valuable and significant car,” Egan said. “It’s known as one of the best engineered cars ever built.”
The car did not choose its owner, or its use, and its origin should be left to the side with bidders considering it merely a surviving example of the Mercedes-Benz 770 line, one of the greatest automotive engineering and constructions designs, Egan said.
German automaker Mercedes made just 88 of the vehicles and only five now survive, three of which are privately owned, the company said.
Before being allowed to bid in the auction, interested buyers will have to pass an interview to determine whether they are qualified, the auction house said, adding that no estimate has been made as to the value of the Mercedes or the price it might bring.
Regardless of how much the car might go for at auction, 10 percent of the sales price will be donated to an as-yet-unnamed charity to educate the public about the history of the Holocaust with an eye toward preventing similar events from happening in the future.
Egan said that the car was sold to an anonymous buyer in 2004 for 15 million euros (about $18 million).