Manor Formula 1 Auctioned Off Their 2014 Race Car for Only $65,000
You missed a chance to buy a Formula 1 car for the price of a Hellcat.
At the end of the 2016 season, Manor Motorsport's Formula 1 team entered a financial tailspin from which they would not recover. The loss of points to their nearest opponents, Sauber, at the Brazilian Grand Prix sealed the team's sad fate, as without the prize money for a top ten finish in the Constructors' Championship and the sponsor bargaining chip that would come with it, they were unable to find a benefactor before the 2017 season kicked off.
They have since folded, their assets auctioned off to make some of the remaining ends meet. Everything from office chairs to unused 2017 paddock attire was sentenced to the auction block crucible. Even their old Formula 1 cars weren't safe, with this example in particular being noteworthy. At £50,500, or approximately $65,000, it's a steal given the available performance from a car like this.
Of course, nobody will be getting much performance from this car, because it was sold as a rolling chassis. No engine, no transmission, no hydraulics, no electrics, and no steering wheel. It is, for all intents and purposes, nothing more than a plinth piece in its current state. That does not mean it will never see a race track again, though in order to be capable of running again, the car would need everything from a drivetrain to brakes and tires, the latter two of which may be more than difficult to come by.
This MR03-02 has quite the story for a backmarker car. It started out life as the team's 2014 car, driven by Max Chilton, whose record-breaking streak of most consecutive classified finishes as a rookie was ended in this car at the 2014 Canadian Grand Prix after a collision with the now late Jules Bianchi. Its sister car, the MR03-01, was responsible for the P9 finish at the 2014 Monaco Grand Prix that put rival team Caterham in the dirt. The 02 chassis had its livery updated to match the team's 2016 car, the MRT05, and served as a show car during the 2016 season.
The MR03-02 has had a long life, but that life may not yet be over. Who knows what the new owner will do with it— make it a museum piece? Or return it to being a race car?