The most expensive cars in the world are about so much more than transportation. These rolling art pieces encapsulate the priorities of the one percent, and in that universe, flamboyance, and swagger take precedence over practicality and efficiency. Lifestyle criticisms aside, these are truly mind-boggling machines.
For the sake of clarity, we’re categorizing recent production vehicles only and we’re leaving out classic cars sold at auction. We’re also limiting the list to one entrant per nameplate, so don’t expect multiple iterations of the same Bugatti Veyron. And these aren’t necessarily the fastest cars in the world, though, many of them are damn fast.
So whether your name is Buffett, Gates, Bezos, or McDuck, these rides are for you.
At a glance
|Rolls-Royce Sweptail||$13 million|
|Mercedes-Benz Maybach Exelero||$8 million|
|Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita||$4.8 million|
|Lamborghini Veneno||$4.5 million|
|W Motors Lykan Hypersport||$3.4 million|
|Limited Edition Bugatti Veyron by Mansory Vivere||$3.4 million|
|Ferrari Pininfarina Sergio||$3 million|
|Bugatti Chiron||$2.9 million|
|Laferrari FXX K||$2.7 million|
|Aston Martin Valkyrie||$2.6 million|
|Pagani Huayra BC||$2.6 million|
|Mercedes-AMG Project One||$2.5 million|
|Ferrari F60 America||$2.6 million|
|Aston Martin Vulcan||$2.3 million|
|Milan Red||$2.3 million|
$13 million — Rolls-Royce Sweptail
Rolls-Royce will build you anything if you have a thick enough wallet to pay for it. Take the Sweptail, for example. It’s a one-off coupe that a customer commissioned from the ground up. Its design draws inspiration from the brand’s classic models while borrowing styling cues from the world of super-yachts. Nearly every part of this car is unique, and the project took four years from start to finish, which explains why it cost approximately $13 million.
By far the most expensive car on our list, the Maybach Exelero makes its appearance under Honorable Mentions due to its one-off status. The Maybach was also built way back in 2004, but that actually makes its sticker price more impressive.
Adjusted for inflation, the Exelero would cost around $10.1 million in the U.S. today, which is close to the GDP of a small island nation. Money and Maybach are about as closely related as peanut butter and jelly, but the two-door further justifies its cost with a 700 hp, twin-turbo V12 and luxurious amenities.
Koenigsegg makes its first appearance on our list with the CCXR Trevita, and it does so as the most expensive street-legal production car in the world. Why so much coin? With no exaggeration, the car is literally coated in diamonds … and diamonds aren’t cheap.
For the Trevita, the Swedish manufacturer developed a new exterior finish called the Koenigsegg Proprietary Diamond Weave, which involves coating carbon fibers with a diamond dust-impregnated resin. We can’t even fathom how much the touch-up paint costs.
Underneath the lustrous finish lies a 4.8-liter, dual-supercharged V8 with a total output of 1,004 horsepower and 797 pound-feet of torque, which means it should have little to no trouble overtaking semis on the freeway. The car’s specifications — in both performance and price — are nearly comical at this point, and just three were ever made.
Poison. That’s the name Lamborghini chose for the modified Aventador roadster you see above — translated from Italian,of course — built to celebrate the automaker’s 50th birthday. We can’t speak for the company’s motivations, but the name is fitting for a vehicle that looks so positively deadly, so undeniably venomous.
The car is absolutely stunning from every angle, and to this day, we’re not convinced it isn’t an alien spacecraft surveying our planet for eventual takeover. It just doesn’t seem real. The only thing more remarkable than the look is the price — a whopping $4.5 million, clearly putting it on our list of the most expensive cars.
The Veneno is fast, and that should come as no surprise. Its 6.5-liter V12 spins all the way up to 8,400 rpm to deliver 740 hp and 507 lb-ft, surging the car to 60 mph in 2.9 seconds.
You may recall the Lykan Hypersport from its starring role in the blockbuster Furious 7, in which the Lebanese supercar crashed through not one but three skyscrapers in Dubai. In a franchise filled with high-end exotics and one-off custom creations, the fact that the Hypersport got so much focus is a testament to its magnetism.
Let’s start with the styling, which includes jewel-encrusted headlights, scissor doors, and an interior ripped straight from science fiction. It looks like a pissed off armored car from the future, and its performance is right on par with its image. The Hypersport boasts a 3.7-liter, twin-turbo flat-six that yields 770 hp and 708 lb-ft.
It’s not just Dominic Toretto who benefits from this level of performance, though: The Abu Dhabi police force has drafted the Hypersport into patrol duty. Although it’s mainly used for marketing and public relations purposes, the high-flying stunner assures that the authorities can keep up with any baddie who tries to get cute on the freeway. Pedal to the floor, 0 to 62 mph is accomplished in just 2.8 seconds, and top speed is a downright scary 240 mph.
This list wouldn’t be complete without some version of the mighty Bugatti Veyron. We’re shining our spotlight on the the Mansory Vivere edition here, because not only is it one of the fastest cars in the world, it’s one of the most expensive.
Augmented by German witch doctors Mansory, the 1,200-hp Veyron starts out as a Grand Sport Vitesse Roadster, only to be adorned with a gorgeous carbon-fiber body, a new spoiler package, upgraded LED lights, a revamped cabin, and a redesigned front grille. Further classifying the Veyron as a work of art, maps of historic race events like the Targa Florio are laser etched into the exterior and interior. Oh, and it can do 254 mph.
With an asking price of $3 million, the Ferrari Sergio isn’t the most expensive car on our list. It is, however, one of the most highly coveted vehicles in the world, as only six were ever made.
Crafted by legendary Italian design house Pininfarina, the Sergio is essentially a Ferrari 458 Spider with a completely new body and interior. That means a 4.5-liter V8 sends a whopping 562 hp to the rear wheels, but because the Sergio is lighter than the 458, it’s quicker and handles better. The new body doesn’t just save weight — it’s chock-full of interesting details like aerodynamic headrests that are built directly into the roll cage.
With so few examples built, the Sergio’s purchase process wasn’t as simple as strolling up to a Ferrari dealership. No, each owner was chosen by the automaker itself, making it one of the rare invite-only vehicles in automotive history.
How do you follow up a classic? You make something even better.
With a starting price of $2.9 million and a gorgeous new body, the divine Chiron outdoes its predecessor in every conceivable way. While the Bugatti Veyron redefined what an automobile could do, the Chiron laughs at those who said the Veyron was the last of its kind, pushing the boundaries of performance even further into the stratosphere.
The supercar’s monstrous specs are made possible by its reworked quad-turbocharged 8.0-liter W16, which now produces 1,500 hp and a monstrous 1,180 lb-ft. Sixty mph is dealt with in a rather quick 2.5 seconds on the way to the Chiron’s top speed, which is limited to 261 mph. It’s still not the fastest car in the world — that title belongs the Hennessey Venom F5 — but cars like these aren’t just about speed; they’re about making statements. We think you’ll agree this Bugatti makes a very strong statement indeed.
The Ferrari LaFerrari is a vehicle held back by one thing — the law. Emissions standards and safety equipment add considerable bulk to a near-perfect machine, so for the track-only FXX K, the car bows only to physics.
The “standard” car’s output of 950 hp was boosted to a downright silly 1,035 hp in FXX K guise, and its various body modifications have increased downforce by up to 50 percent. Even the tires are space age, as the slick Pirellis feature embedded sensors to keep tabs on longitudinal, lateral, and radial acceleration, as well as temperature and pressure. Until Ferrari invents some sort of road-going hyperdrive, this is about as good as a performance car gets.