“Mr. Bean” star, comedian, and well-known car enthusiast Rowan Atkinson recently sold his prized 1997 McLaren F1 hypercar to an unknown buyer for $US12 million.
According to Thomas Burrows of the Daily Mail, the veteran comedian sold his 18-year-old ride through exotic car specialists Taylor & Crawley at an extraordinary profit.
Atkinson purchased the three-seat hypercar new in 1997 for around $US1 million and has since put more than 41,000 miles on the odometer.
Over the years, Atkinson’s “deep purple” F1 — one of just 64 production roadgoing versions ever made — has garnered more than its fair share of notoriety.
In 1999, the comedian caused significant damage to the car after rear-ending a small economy car.
In August of 2011, Atkinson crashed the F1 again.
This time the “Johnny English” star lost control of the McLaren on a slippery stretch of road, sending the car into a tree and hedges. The crash ripped out most of the 240-mph hypercar’s rear end.
According to the Daily Mail, the F1’s 627 horsepower BMW V12 engine wound up more than 60 feet away from the main wreckage of the car.
Fortunately for Atkinson, the McLaren’s immense value meant that even with $US1.4 million of damage, the insurance company paid to repair the car rather than deem it “totalled.”
According to the publication, the F1’s insurance payment was the largest ever in Britain for a car and more than three times the previous record holder.
The Mclaren F1 has been a hot commodity of late. This month, Sotheby’s announced that it will be auctioning off a rare “LM” spec 1998 F1 in August. The auction house expects the car to fetch between $US12-$US15 million.
Last year, comedian and renowned car collector Jay Leno told Business Insider that buyers have attempted — unsuccessfully — to purchase his 1994 F1, the first to land in the US. According to the former “Tonight Show” host, he’s been offered as much as $US11 million for the car that cost $US800,000 new.
Here’s a closer look at Rowan Atkinson’s McLaren F1: