When it’s a vintage Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance Best of Show winner, it’s clearly worth the $4 million price tag. Not actually yet sold for that sum, this 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540 K Spezial Cabriolet A by Sindelfingen (chassis no. 408371) is a rare beauty that auction experts believe could easily fit between the $3 million and $4 million thresholds.
As the only known surviving example of its type, the car flaunts a one-off design, as well as a highly impressive list of previous owners, including William Lyon, Axel Wars, Otis Chandler, and James Melton – all remarkable figures with an eye for excellent cars.
The first client of the rare collectible was a Parisian, but soon afterwards the Mercedes found its way to the other side of the pond and onto US territory. Its first famous owner was singer James Melton, who was the most iconic car collector in America at the time, in an era when the hobby was still new and very eccentric (during the ‘30s and ‘40s).
The next famous automobile collector to purchase the 540 K Spezial Cabriolet was Otis Chandler, the last publisher of the Los Angeles Times from his family. Under his hand, the car won the Best of Show title at the 1973 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The list of people to have owned the vintage collectible continues with a number of other relevant names in the industry, and they all contribute to the car’s incredible value and appeal.