Ant Anstead is to present a new TV series that goes behind the scenes of the world’s largest auction house for the most expensive and rare cars.
The World’s Most Expensive Cars will air on Channel 4 in late spring, showing presenter and car restoration expert Anstead travelling around the world with experts from RM Sotheby’s, the world’s largest auction house for ‘investment quality’ classic cars.
Ant follows their car hunters as they travel the globe seeking out some of the finest and most thrilling motor cars ever built – often with mind-blowing price tags.
Each episode sees Ant follow three car specialists – or ‘hunters’ – on their detective trails across North America and Europe to find some of the best and most valuable collector automobiles on the planet – cars that are rare, limited editions or race winners, often with fascinating histories or famous owners.
The car hunters need to find roughly sixty plus jaw-dropping cars for each of their spectacular auctions, often outwitting their competitors along the way. First the car hunters have to use their experience, knowledge, contacts, tip-offs and intuition to track down suitable classic cars – Ferraris, Aston Martins, Lamborghinis, Jaguars etc.
They’re after nothing short of the world’s most desirable vehicles, often carrying million-dollar-plus price tags. They then have to persuade the often obsessive owners to part with their prized possessions, agree on estimate, and take a chance at one of the company’s upcoming sales.
Each story climaxes with the real life jeopardy of the auction itself. Will the super-wealthy turn up to bid? Can these motors hit the jackpot or will they fail to reach their reserve?
The car hunters are based out of the company’s main hubs in London, Los Angeles and Chatham, Ontario.
Ant, who was announced as Edd China’s replacement on Discovery Channel’s Wheeler Dealers, said: “The World’s Most Expensive Cars is an absolutely brilliant show. I’ve been travelling around the world dealing with some of the world’s best cars, meeting some of the craziest people and going to the best locations.
“It was a real car fan’s dream to be involved in this job.”
Ten 60-minute episodes will air throughout the year, as cars with both famous and racing provenance pass under the hammer.
In episode one, a Jaguar D Type is sold for $19.8 million (£15.81 million), breaking the world record for the highest price paid for a classic UK racing car.
“This car won Le Mans in 1955,” said Ant. “I got to sit in that car, touch it smell it less than one hour before it sold for a shade under 20 million in California.
“This show isn’t like any other, it’s not trying to be Top Gear or Fifth Gear – it’s more about the cream of the crop, the best of the best cars and it’s about the personalities of the people who are involved in buying them, finding them and restoring them.
“This truly is champagne and glamour.”
The most expensive model of the whole series is a 1956 Fangio Ferrari 290 MM, which made $25.5 million (£20.37 million).
Stay tuned to find out when the show will be aired on Channel 4