Ayrton Senna's Honda NSX for auction

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IOL mot pic jan28 Senna NSX 1 . This Honda NSX was driven by Ayrton Senna when he visited the Braga family home in Portugal.

If there is one thing that will boost the value of a classic car, it is 'provenance' - a provable history of ownership by somebody famous.

And this 1992 Honda NSX has provenance in spades; once owned by legendary three times Formula One world champion Ayrton Senna, it will go under the hammer at Silverstone Auctions' Race Retro & Classic Car Sale on 22 and 23 February.

The Honda was originally bought by Antonio Carlos de Almeida Braga, Senna's manager, mentor and close personal friend, for the Brazilian to use when he visited the Braga family home in Portugal - and Braga made sure that it was exactly the same specification (plain black, with black leather interior and manual gearbox) as the NSX Senna drove at home in Brazil.

NOBODY WAS ALLOWED TO TOUCH IT

After Senna's tragic death at Imola in 1994, the car just stood in the garage at Braga's home. He wouldn't let anybody touch it and it hadn't been driven for two years when Braga finally sold it, to an investor who kept it only a short time before selling it on to the current owner in 1997. Even now it has only 50 820km on its odometer.

Auctioneer Nick Whale said: "Very rarely does a car with such pedigree and provenance come on the market, especially with such a personal link to arguably the greatest Formula one driver of all time."

IOL mot pic jan28 Senna NSX 2 Immaculate interior shows an odometer reading of 50850.9km.

MULTIPLE ANNIVERSARIES

This year sees the 20th anniversary of Senna's death, while next year will be the 25th anniversary of this model. Senna was also personally involved in the development of the NSX because at that time Honda was supplying engines to the McLaren F1 team, a partnership which is set to resume again for the 2015 season.

Given its superb original condition and, of course, its provenance, Whale expects it to fetch £75 000 - £85 000 (R1.4 - R1.55 million).



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