MONTE CARLO, MONACO – An Aston Martin made famous in a starring role in British cinema, will be available for bidding at RM Sotheby’s London auction on September 5th. Built in Aston Martin’s famed Newport Pagnell factory in Buckinghamshire, the DB4GT—once owned by admired actor Peter Sellers and automotive star of 1963 comedy film “The Wrong Arm of the Law”—is a celebration of British heritage as RM Sotheby’s prepares its 12th annual London sale.
Driven in a memorable car chase scene by Sellers in its starring role, the 1961 Aston Martin DB4GT, chassis no. 0157/R, retains its original ‘41DPX’ registration as seen on the silver screen. According to the Aston Martin DB4GT book, Sellers—a known car enthusiast, also famed for his leading role in the “Pink Panther” film series—enjoyed driving the car so much, he bought it shortly after production concluded and maintained ownership for a brief period. Following filming, the engine was replaced with a 4.0-litre Lagonda Rapide block by the factory in March 1963.
Following Aston Martin Owners Club motorsport event participation in 1966, the DB4GT—originally delivered in Dubonnet Red before being repainted in green for its film appearance—changed hands and colors a number of times before eventually returning to England in 1998. A year later, the DB4GT underwent a full restoration, including body and chassis work as well as complete engine and gearbox rebuilds collectively worth more than £126,000 ($170,776). Upon completion, the car featured in the November 2003 issue of Octane magazine and has been retained by its current owner since 2004.
The DB4GT was built by Aston Martin as a lightweight, high-performance iteration of the standard DB4. The ‘GT’ version was constructed with lightweight aluminum metalwork, while the wheelbase was also reduced, resulting in many DB4GTs having no rear seats – though this example retains the ‘occasional seats’ in the back. The standard DB4 saw production from 1958 to 1963, with a mere 75 standard ‘GT’ models built, making this car the ultimate collector’s coup, whether a film buff or discerning Aston Martin enthusiast. The DB4 was later succeeded by the Aston Martin DB5, which would go on to laud its own film success as a car forever associated with the James Bond movie franchise.
Felix Archer, Car Specialist with RM Sotheby’s, said: “This is an historic car that simply can’t be missed. Not only is a DB4GT one of the most desirable grand touring cars of the 1960s, but it’s fitting that this particular Aston Martin, with its close ties to British cinema, should become one of our headline lots at this year’s London sale. Peter Sellers’ love of cars was undeniable—he’d owned 83 by the age of 39—and he’s been long linked with the Aston Martin brand. In addition to its on-screen past, the car is offered in stunning condition, and is a product of a glorious age of iconic British car manufacturing.”
For further information on RM Sotheby’s London and Monaco sales, including entries for each auction and bidder registration, please visit www.rmsothebys.com. Collectors interested in discussing consignment opportunities for the London sale are invited to call RM Sotheby’s London office at +44 (0) 20 7851 7070 to speak with a car specialist.
About RM Sotheby’s
RM Sotheby’s is the world's largest auction house for investment-quality automobiles. With more than 35 years’ experience in the collector car industry, RM’s vertically integrated range of services, from private treaty sales and auctions (including both RM Sotheby’s and RM Auctions events) to estate planning and financial services, coupled with an expert team of car specialists and an international footprint, provide an unsurpassed level of service to the global collector car market. In February 2015, RM formed a strategic partnership with Sotheby’s, uniting the two companies for the full calendar of future automobile auctions. For further information, visit www.rmsothebys.com.