Ralph Lauren’s $40 million Bugatti wins top prize at Concorso d’Eleganza

The current record for the world's most expensive car belongs to a 1938 Bugatti 57SC Atlantic sold in 2010 for somewhere between $30 million and $40 million. Should fashion designer Ralph Lauren ever sell his edition of the same car, he'll probably be able to command a slightly higher price, especially after his Atlantic swept the top awards at this year's Concorso d'Eleganza at Italy's Villa d'Este, the world's most exclusive car show.

An ardent car collector, Lauren has the fourth and final 57SC Atlantic built by the Bugatti family before the untimely death of designer Jean Bugatti, and one of only two with a well-documented history. Given that the other took the top prize at Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance a few years back, these cars represent the pinnacle of collectable vehicles worldwide. Lauren's Atlantic won not only the best in show from the professional judges, but the crowd-voted Coppa d’Oro award as well.

But the Concorso d'Eleganza always entices some of the most stunning cars ever made to the shores of Italy's Lake Como. Limited to a field of 50, this year's entries ranged from the 1928 Mercedes-Benz 680S Saoutchik roadster that won the top prize at Pebble Beach last year to the bizarre 1978 Lancia Silibo, a concept car based on the Stratos and famed for how its windows flow seamlessly into the body, all tinted a deep brown.


The show's other prize goes to a modern concept car, taken this year by the 450-hp Alfa Romeo Disco Volante Touring, a re-bodied version of the Alfa 8C unveiled at the Geneva auto show in March that the Italian automaker will build on demand for wealthy clients.

Only a few thousand people a year can make the festival in person, but you can explore it virtually through our gallery below.