Ralph Lauren's insane $300 million car collection!
Ralph Lauren, one of the biggest names in the fashion industry and a man that has seriously good taste. Perhaps you didn't take him for a petrolhead, but his car collection is a testament to that he absolutely is. And when your net worth is at an estimated $6.8 billion while also having a company worth an additional $7.4 million, you don't cheap out at your hobbies, because why would you? The garage made of dreams is one of the most exclusive, rare and expensive collections in the world. His $300-million car collection is housed in a $100-million garage filled with blow-ups of magazine covers, an administrative suite, scale models, an archive, a workshop, and of course the 43 cars he owns. Sadly I couldn't find all the cars he owned, but some of the 27 models he has in his collection.
Before I go on with this list I figured I would include a small disclaimer knowing that there will be a lot of nitpicking in the comment section if I don't. The photos aren't of Ralph Lauren's cars specifically, but the models are the same. This is due to copyright & image quality reasons. But don't worry, if you want to see the exact colours of his cars and the way he structures his garage, I'll include a video of him going through his collection in the bottom. Before any of that, enjoy this fantastic list of cars and some small anecdotes about them.
27) 1937 Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic DropHead Coupe
Image taken from Daniel Stocker
The Bugatti Type 57 was the creation of Jean Bugatti, son of founder Ettore. The original type 57 was a touring car model produced from 1934 through 1940. It used a 3.3 L 3,257 cc DOHC Inline 8, producing 135 hp with a top speed of 153 km/h (95 mph).
Lauren's was originally sold to a Bugatti enthusiast in Great Britain in 1938, and then it came into the possession of Ralph Lauren. With the help of Paul Russel, and Russel and CO. they did a full restoration getting the car back to its former glory. The car was rewarded with Best of Show at Pebble Beach in 1990, and against at the Villa d’Este in 2013, among other top awards.
26) 1960 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta Scaglietti
If a standard Ferrari were to be considered coal, this would be a diamond. The 250 Berlinetta is one of Ferraris most notable creations and the car that made Ferrari start doing series production instead of a single production. The engine was a V12 280 hp beast, that would give you an orgasm once the first sound waves tickle your ears. And it will even make a grown man cry at the sheer beauty of it. A masterpiece to say the least.
25) 1965 Aston Martin DB5 Volante Drop Head Coupe
Not really a car that needs an introduction, the Aston Martin DB5 was made famous by being James Bond's car in Goldfinger (1964). If Ralph wasn't just making us jealous, this iteration of the car would even make Bond green with envy. The DB5 Volante was designed by Italian coachbuilder Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera, an Italian company founded in 1925 and still running today. The car made use of a 4.0-Litre inline-six engine capable of 282 HP and it was in much more limited production than the "standard" DB5. It seems that the only upper hand Bond's car has is that it's weaponized.
24) 1967 Ferrari 275 GTB NART Spyder
The Ferrari 274 is a front-engined V12-powered grand touring two-seater produced by Ferrari between 1964 and 1968. This version of the car might be one of Ferraris rarest with only ten 275 NART Spyders being made by the legendary designer, Scaglietti. Enzo Ferrari famously said that the Jaguar E-Type was "the most beautiful car in the wold", in 1961. So it really is no surprise then that the 275 shares many design queues with the E-type. Motor Trend Classic named the 275 GTB Spyder as number three in their list of the ten "Greatest Ferraris of all time". And in 1967 Road & Track described the NART Spyder as "the most satisfying sports car in the world".
23) 1930 Mercedes-Benz SSK “Count Trossi”
The car that's more sinister than it looks. The Mercedes-Benz SSK, which Lauren calls "Count Trossi", is a legendary automobile. It was designed by Ferdinand Porsche and ran on a supercharged straight-six engine that could pump out nearly 300 horsepower, which was unheard of in the 1920s. Even crazier is that this devil on wheels could achieve a top speed of 120 mph, making it the fastest car of its day. It's not only fast, but extremely rare, only 40 of these cars were built, and only four or five originals remain, of which Lauren's owns one.
22) 1958 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa Spyder
"1958 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa" by Ferrari250GTO is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
"Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa 1957" by tautaudu02 is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
Another brutal V12 in Lauren's collection. This glorious redhead designed by Scaglietti, Carlo Chiti and Giotto Bizzarini dominated the motorsport scene between 1958 and 1961, winning 10 World Sports Car Championship races. It is also considered the second most valuable Ferrari in the world, with valuations of upwards of $8 million.
21) 1996 McLaren F1 LM
The car nerds out there are already drooling at the first 7 cars, but this one will probably put some books on their laps. The McLaren F1 LM is not only one of the rarest, fastest and most expensive, it's also part of Ralph Lauren's garage. The F1 LM ("Le Mans") was the crème de la crème of the already insane enough F1. Only five were ever built so unless you suffer from a deformity, you can count all existing F1 LM's on your hand.
20) 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder
The Porsche 550 was a racing sports car produced by Porsche from 1953 to 1956. In that time only 90 were made, but it quickly began dominating in the 1.1- and the 1.5-litre classes. The 550 is a mid-engined car with an air-cooled four-cylinder engine. Sadly though it is infamous for being the car that James Dean's life was taken in while driving, making for a bitter-sweet story.
19) 1957 Jaguar XKSS
The Jaguar XKSS was a road-going version of the Jaguar D-type race car, built in 1957. Only 16 of them were built of the planned 25. And if this is too ordinary for you, Ralph Lauren's XKSS is one of the original two D-types that were returned to Jaguar to be converted by Sir William Lyons to a road-going specification. Another celebrity owner of the Jaguar XKSS is Steve McQueen who owned a painted British racing green Jaguar which he referred to as the "Green Rat".
18) 1938 Alfa Romeo Mille Miglia Spyder
By now most of you have figured out that there's pretty much no "ordinary" cars in Lauren's collection. It will come to no surprise then that this 1938 Alfa Romeo Mille Miglia Spyder is one of only four team cars ever built by Alfa Romeo and Carrozzeria Touring. Ralph Lauren purchased the car in 2004 and had it restored back to its 1938 self.
Alfa Corse, an in-house racing team for Alfa Romeo, took over the activities of Scuderia Ferrari in 1938, replacing many of their personnel (including Enzo Ferrari) to create this car. They used Carrozzeria Touring Superleggera roadster bodies, and the first car's engine was tuned to 225 bhp, the second's to 295 bhp. These two cars finished first and second at the 1938 Mille Miglia. Two others didn't finish the race. And he owns one of those 4 cars.
17) 1954 Ferrari 375 Plus
If you start sensing a bit of passive aggression in the tone of the text, you are absolutely right. I'm more jealous than a single mother is of Jesuses ability to turn water to wine. Looking past that we can get into this 1954 Ferrari 375 Plus.
The Ferrari 375 Plus was a sports racing car which competed internationally, winning many major races, including 24 Hours of Le Mans, Carrera Panamericana, 1000km of Buenos Aires, Agadir GP and Silverstone. It had a front-mounted 5.0 L V12 producing 325 hp at 6000 rpm. This gave it enough juice to reach a top speed of 280 km/h and enough charisma to get Ralph interested.
16) 1929 Bentley 4 ½ Litre Blower
As crazy goes, this Bentley 4 ½ tops most lists. The car built by Walter Owen Bentley replaced the Bentley 3 Litre with a more powerful car by increasing its engine displacement to 4.4-L. The name "Blower" came from their supercharged engines. And when you supercharge an already fast car, you get an even faster car. A car so fast it won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1928. It also set several speed records, including the Bentley Blower No.1 Monoposto in 1932 at Brooklands, recording a speed of 138 mph. If you are wondering why the supercharger is on the front end of the crankshaft, it's because of the chief engineer W.O. Bentley refusing to allow the engine to be modified. A clever solution to say the least.
15) 1955 Morgan Plus 4 DropHead Coupe
"Morgan Plus 4" by lu_ro is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Morgan, the looks haven't changed much since the fifties. But then again why would they when they look oh so good (Red>Blue). The Morgan Plus 4 was one of their most "powerful" and luxurious models. Over 4,500 of these cars were produced between 1950 and 1969, and then again from 1985 to 2000, and from 2005 to the present. When I said powerful, it's entirely relative to the company, the 2088 cc inline-four engine wasn't that much faster than a carriage producing only 68 horsepower and only achieving a top speed of 84 mph. In all fairness when you drive around in this thing you would want people to see you and admire the gorgeous car, so maybe going fast isn't necessary.
"Morgan Plus 4" by lu_ro is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
14) 1933 Bugatti Type 59 Grand Prix
Being able to say that you've seen a Bugatti is pretty cool. Being able to say that you have driven a Bugatti is bonkers. Being able to say that you own a Bugatti is mad. Being able to say that you own more than one is well *censored comment*. The Type 59 was the final Bugatti racer of the 1930s. It used an enlarged 3.3-litre straight-eight engine from a Type 57, giving it 250 horsepower, and it sat in a modified Type 54 chassis. Lighter than a bird without feathers and lower than mushed lizard this car was the bee's knees. And only eight were ever made, and well Ralph Lauren owns one of them.
13) 1950 Jaguar XK120 Roadster
Have you ever encountered the problem with "too much success"? No me neither, but Jaguar has. The XK120 was a sports car manufactured between 1948 and 1954, and it was the first sports car from Jaguar since the SS 100 ceased production in 1940. Jaguar initially meant to build just 200 of them, but thanks to the success of the car's sales they bumped that figure up to 12,000! That's a 5,900% increase, those numbers are pretty rare in the automotive sales world. It's understandable though when you look at the XK120, it is fantastic at every angle. The original engine was a 3.4-litre straight-six that gave the car 160 bhp. In 1949, The Motor magazine test-drove the car and reported a top speed of 124.6 mph, acceleration from 0-60 mph in 10.0 seconds, and a cost of £1,263. Don't expect that price tag nowadays though, unless you buy it from the prince of Nigeria of course.
12) 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gull-Wing Coupe
One of if not the most iconic Mercedes cars ever built. A car that makes you wonder "how would I park this car to get out of it later?" & "sweet dreams are made of this". The 300SL was the first-ever production car with direct fuel injection, and it also held the world's fastest top speed (163 mph). Today, the 300SL is one of the most collectable Mercedes models out there, with prices usually in the $1 million to $2 million range. Sports Car International named it the fifth-best sports car of all time.
11) 2006 Bugatti Veyron Super Sport
With cars, most of them have to marinate a bit before their price tags blow out the roof. That isn't the case of the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport though, no-no. The Super Sport more like Super Steep (funny I know) began retail for $2.4 million, which made it not only the fastest production car of all time but also the most expensive. Rocking 1,184 horsepower coming from its 8.0-litre W16 engine and reaching warp speeds of 267.856 mph it's all kinds of awesome. And as awesome goes Ralph Lauren owns it.
10) 2010 Lamborghini Murciélago SuperVeloce
I assume most people stopped reading 5 cars ago which means that I can reduce commentary to "fast very fast sexy car". But since I'm nice and have way too much spare time on my hands I'll continue writing non-caveman like.
The Murciélago SuperVeloce is like the name suggests, super veloce(fast). This is the ultimate version of the Murciélago, with reduced weight, an upgraded intake system, revised valve timing, and other fast things. Its V12 engine produces 661 hp and reaches a top speed of 211 mph. And in typical Ralph Lauren fashion, it's limited and expensive. Only 186 were made and it cost $400,000 in 2009.
9) 1958 Mercedes-Benz Roadster
When you own a $300 million car collection consisting of cars that are not only defined by their beauty but their revolutionary machinery and rich history it might be hard to pick out a favourite. But *DING DING DING* We have a winner. This is apparently Ralph Lauren's favourite car to drive, the 1958 Mercedes-Benz Roadster. In a long interview with The Telegraph about his car collection, this was the car he was pictured driving and showing off. While driving the car, he explained that “I came to realize, that just as clothes tell you something, a car tells you something too.” Clichè comments aside I'm actually surprised and glad that Ralph could pick a favourite and it not being the most predictable one (spoilers I thought it would be the car bellow).
8) 1964 Ferrari 250 GTO
The 250 GTO, where do I begin. Should I start with the fact that one of these sold for $70 million in 2018? Or maybe the fact that only 36 were produced? Really it should be about the fact that it has won tons of racing events during its day, back when it cost just $18,000 and only buyers personally approved by Enzo Ferrari could own one. And the fact that it has a monstrous V12 producing 296 hp at 7500 rpm while only weighing 880 kg. But no, I can't slide past the $70 million price tag that this car auctioned out for. I mean that's the GDP of a small nation for christ sake! Not even joking, Montserrat had a GDP of 62.05 million 2016 & Tuvalu had one at 36.70 million. But seriously, simply look at it! No words do it justice.
7) 1955 Jaguar XKD
Very similar to the XKSS the Jaguar XKD was the race going version of the D-Type. One of the most notable features is the huge shark fin on the back end of the car that was used to aerodynamically stabilize the car. It also had serious racing pedigree winning Le Mans 24 Hours 1955, 1956 and 1957.
6) 2010 Porsche GT3 RS
The Porsche 911 GT3 is a high-performance version of the Porsche 911 sports car primarily intended for racing. A number of variations, designed for road and track duty, have been introduced since its launch in 1999. More than 14,000 cars have been produced. This generation of GT3 RS known as 997.2 GT3 RS received huge praise from Fifth Gear who highlighted the exceptional performance of the car.
5) 1948 Woody Station wagon
At the end of World War II, most Americans were rolling around in cars built well before the war and many were badly in need of replacement. As a response, manufacturers began building Station Wagons to meet the interests of their family-minded clients and customers who needed utilitarian capabilities, the Woody Station Wagon was born. Few have survived due to their working-class nature and wooden bodies, but those that have commanded the interests of collectors and enthusiasts alike. They are works of artisan craftsmanship second to none with dovetail joints and grain blending with few rivals. Finding an exceptional example isn’t hard, but it’s not easy. This 1948 Ford Woody Station Wagon is one of 8,912 built that year, and this one hosts the 239 CI flathead V-8 engine with 3-speed manual transmission.
4) 1988 Porsche 959
The twin-turbocharged flat-6 959 was the world's fastest street-legal production car when introduced, achieving a top speed of 317 km/h (197 mph), with some variants even capable of achieving 339 km/h (211 mph). When it was first released the 959 was considered the most technologically advanced road-going sports car ever built, and rightfully so. It was one of the first high-performance sports cars with all-wheel drive, providing the basis for Porsche's first all-wheel-drive 911 Carrera 4 model. Sports Car International even named the 959 number one on its list of Top Sports Cars of the 1980s.
3) 2010 Lamborghini Reventon Roadster
The extremely limited and extremely fast "Murciélago in disguise" known as the Reventón is a mid-engined sports car that debuted at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show. The official press release stated that only 20 vehicles would be sold to the public, with one additional car (marked as 00/20) produced for the Lamborghini museum. But Lamborghini did one better, the Reventón Roadster. Production was set for a run of 15 units, with an MSRP of €1,100,000. The actual price, however, increased twofold to around $2,100,000, due to high demand.
2) 1931 Alfa Romeo 8c 2300
Remember the previous Alfa Romeo Mille Miglia? This was its predecessor, the 8C 2300 was built for motorsport and was hugely successful in it as well. They won the Le Mans 4 years in a row between 1931 and 1934 and Mille Miglia 3 years between 1932 and 1934. Production was limited to 188 units but luckily enough Ralph Lauren got his hands on one. The car made use of an 8 cylinder engine comprised of two 4 cylinder blocks with one cylinder head each. It might not be as big or as flashy as its younger brother, but it definitely deserves a spot in Ralph's collection.
1) 2015 Ferrari La Ferrari
Photo taken by Adrian Dorobantu
"La Ferrari" by Ciorra Photography is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
The car so good it's called after itself. The Ferrari the Ferrari also known as the F150 is a limited production hybrid sports car built by none other than Ferrari. It is the last Ferrari model with a mid-mounted 12-cylinder engine and quickly became the flagship model for the Italian brand. The La Ferrari came at an interesting time going against the likes of the Porsche 918 and McLaren P1, many motoring journalists preferring the Ferrari.
If you have gotten this far, then great! If you have scrolled past all text and just looked at the images, that's cool too. Hopefully, you could enjoy these fantastic pieces of machinery that are not only delightful to look at but each and every one of them has a story to be told.
Before you rush in the comments and tell me off because I missed this & that fact about *insert any car here*, the intention was to write an article, not a novel. If you were one of those planning to do so I have good news for you! There's an entire documentary about the Ralph Lauren collection & museum exhibition that talks about the individual stories and different aspects of the cars. But before I send you away to look at that video please take a second and tell me which is your favourite out of the lot and why?