John Lennon’s first car heads to auction, ticket to ride?
When you first passed your driving test, did you have mounds of luxury dealerships surrounding your home, desperate to sell you an exotic sports car? If you’re one of The Beatles you did. Amongst the Maseratis, Aston Martins, and Jaguar E-Types, John Lennon decided a 1965 Ferrari 330GT would make a perfect first car. That very machine is about to head to auction, and stands to sell for around $340,000.
After recording their number one hit, Ticket to Ride, in February 1965, Lennon went on to pass his driving test that same month. Of course, as a member of The Beatles, nothing occurred without the world catching wind, and once the media reported his successful test, dealerships went on the prowl. With his Kenwood home in Surrey, England, swarming with hungry car salesmen, Lennon reportedly strolled out unfazed and began inspecting the stunning collection of vehicles parked out front.
The one that caught his eye was an all-blue Ferrari, worth at the time around $10,000, and one of only 500 built. With his newly earned ticket, Lennon purchased his ride, keeping the car until October 1967, amassing over 20,000 miles. The car heading to Bonhams auction in Goodwood July 12, presents the original registration plate (DUL 4C) and has the same engine and chassis that the singer drove nearly 46 years ago. It will line up alongside Fangio’s 1954 grand prix winning Mercedes-Benz Formula One car.
Sholto Gilbertson, Senior Specialist in the Bonhams Motor Car Department, said: “It is a wonderful commentary on the early excitement generated by ‘Beatlemania’ that John Lennon didn’t even have to leave his house to buy his first car.”
As the lyrics to “Every Little Thing” document: “Yes, I know I’m a lucky guy.”
Photo: Bonhams/Simon Clay