1991 Williams FW14

RM Sotheby's Monaco 2022
Saturday, 14 May
€4,055,000 ($4,220,255)
Sale Price
€1,500,000 - €3,000,000
Est. Range
14 May 2022
Sold Date
Lot Number
Competition car, original as-raced
RM Sotheby's
Auction House
Chassis no. FW145. 3500/750hp V-10, fuel injection, 6-speed AutoManual, black Fondmetal centerlock alloy wheels, Goodyear Eagle F1 tires.

Evaluation: Given to Nigel Mansell at the end of the 1991 season and offered by Mansell here after 31 years of mostly static storage. Absolutely original, as delivered from Williams Grand Prix Engineering and complete with everything needed to make it run. Famously the car on which Ayrton Senna, Mansell’s rival for the Driver’s Championship, hitched a ride after running out of fuel on the cool down lap at the British GP, which Mansell won.

On the auction block Mansell commented that he would have been World Champion sooner if he’d dumped Senna off the car on the way back to the pits. Five GP wins in 1991, but no championship. The car has good paint and a little dust in the engine compartment with some early corrosion starting on unpainted surfaces. On the block there were two bidders (online and phone) at the end.

Bottom Line: The image of Senna clinging to the Williams’ airbox is legendary and it was heavily featured in RM’s Monaco presentation of this car including the catalog cover. While arguably not as important as the sequential shift gearbox 1989 Ferrari 640 GP that preceded it across the Monaco auction block the final result was avidly attended to by two bidders, one online and one of the phone, and resulted in this generous price. It is an expensive taxi, even if the passenger was Ayrton Senna.

by Rick Carey
10 June 2022
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Condition definitions
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Condition #1 vehicles are the best in the world. The visual image is of the best vehicle, in the right colors, driving onto the lawn at the finest concours. Perfectly clean, the vehicle has been groomed down to the tire treads. Painted and chromed surfaces are mirror-like. Dust and dirt are banned, and materials used are correct and superbly fitted. The one word description for #1 vehicles is “concours.“
Condition #2: Excellent
#2 vehicles could win a local or regional show. They can be former #1 vehicles that have been driven or have aged. Seasoned observers will have to look closely for flaws, but will be able to find some not seen by the general public. The paint, chrome, glass and finishes will all appear as excellent. No excessive smoke will be seen on startup, no unusual noises will emanate from the engine. The vehicle will drive as a new vehicle of its era would. The one word description for #2 vehicles is “excellent.“
Condition #3: Good
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Condition #4: Fair
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Condition #5: Poor
Running, but battered, incomplete, and perhaps rusty.
Condition #6: Parts car
Parts car.
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