First Ford GT and Corvette ZR1 sell for big bucks at auction

2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
January may not be a great time for most people to drive a supercar, but apparently it’s a good time to buy one. The first production examples of the current-generation Ford GT and Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 crossed the block at the same auction over the weekend to raise money for charity. Both cars were sold at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale, Arizona, for considerable sums.

The GT was particularly noteworthy, since buying one at auction is easier than going through Ford’s stringent application process. That application process was meant to prevent owners from turning around and selling their cars for a profit, although Ford probably didn’t mind that the owner of this car, businessman Ron Pratte, donated it to be sold for charity.

The GT sold for a cool $2.5 million, with proceeds from the sale benefitting the Autism Society of North Carolina and the Autism Alliance of Michigan. In addition to the GT, the first 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt crossed the block at $300,000. Money from that sale went to  the Boys Republic charity, which runs a school for troubled youth in Chino Hills, California.

Unlike the Ford GT, the Corvette ZR1 hasn’t actually started production yet, so the winning bidder will be able to spec the car however they want. That includes choices of coupe or convertible body styles, and seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmissions. The winning bid was $925,000, with proceeds benefitting the Stephen Siller Tunnel to the Towers Foundation, which supports injured first responders. The buyer was Rick Hendrick, owner of NASCAR team Hendrick Motorsports. Hendrick previously scooped up the first examples of the current-generation Acura NSX and Chevy Camaro ZL1 1LE.

The two cars take the classic Ford versus Chevy rivalry to new extremes, and offer two very different approaches to performance. The GT was designed to race at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, something that’s reflected in a design that is lightweight and aerodynamically efficient, but light on creature comforts. The ZR1 takes the existing C7-generation Corvette platforms to new extremes, adding more serious aerodynamic features like a massive rear wing, and more power. The Ford packs a 647-horsepower twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V6, while the Chevy sports a more traditional 6.2-liter supercharged V8, which churns out 755 hp. We’ll take both, please.

Both cars ended up selling for considerably more than their list prices (around $400,000 for the Ford and $119,995 for the Chevy). But at least the new owners will be helping out good causes. Since the purchases count as charitable donations, they’ll be able to use the cost of the cars as tax write-offs.

Updated: Added the amounts the cars sold for.

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