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Rowan returns with a ‘double act’

A 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E and a 1989 Lancia Thema, owned by comedian and actor Rowan Atkinson, are being offered for sale by Silverstone Auctions at its Race Retro Classic Car Sale on February 24 & 25.

It was only a few months ago when Silverstone Auctions successfully sold another car owned by Rowan, a limited edition 2015 Land Rover Defender 90 Heritage, for £10,000 above its pre-auction lower estimate.

All eyes will now be on his two modern classics – being offered at no reserve – at Silverstone Auctions’ next sale which is a highlight of the Race Retro weekend at Stoneleigh Park in Warwickshire.

The Mercedes-Benz 500E (pictured below) is a rare, hand-built model in left-hand drive and has covered a mere 85,000 kilometres. It is actually the second 500E owned by the comedian, who was so impressed by the first model he bought new in the 1990s that in 2015 he set about finding a best of breed example – which is the one now being offered for auction.

Powered by a 5-litre V8 engine, the car’s interior features grey cloth upholstery, preferred by Rowan to the standard leather finish, as well as walnut detailing and leather-covered steering wheel. The exterior, finished in silver, is in outstanding condition and the car is offered with a comprehensive history file, original book pack and spare set of keys.

Joining it ‘on stage’ is Rowan’s other modern classic – the Lancia Thema 8.32 Series 1 (pictured above). As a renowned classic car enthusiast, Rowan chose this model because of its rarity as a Series 1 model, which is confirmed as there are fewer than 20 examples currently registered and taxed.

Finished in red and housing the V8 32-valve engine from the Ferrari 328, this excellent condition left-hand drive example, complete with beige velour upholstery, has been in Rowan’s ownership for the last seven years, during which time a considerable sum has been spent maintaining and improving the car.


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