Russian billionaire buys Hitler's Mercedes
The buyer plans to move the car to Moscow, according to reports.Berlin -- An unnamed Russian billionaire has bought a Mercedes used by Adolf Hitler for several million euros (dollars), a German newspaper report said on Monday.
Classic car dealer Michael Froehlich told the Cologne-based Express daily that he had been contacted by a representative of the billionaire asking him to find out what had happened to the dark blue open-top Mercedes 770K.
After weeks of research, he discovered it was sold in Austria after World War II, then went to a classic car museum in Las Vegas before belonging to a Bavarian beer magnate, whose widow sold it after his death in 2008.
"On Wednesday, I got a tip off on whom it had been sold to," Froehlich said.
"It belonged to a private collector and was in a garage in Bielefeld (in western Germany). He had six of these very rare models," he told the paper.
Froehlich said he had verified the vehicle's authenticity using the vehicle's original documents and old photos.
"Even the number plate was correct: 1A 148461," he said. "I checked with prosecutors ... whether the deal was illegal. They raised no objections, as long as there were no Nazi symbols visible."
The Russian buyer, who came to Germany via private jet to seal the deal on Friday, bought the entire collection, the paper said, adding that Hitler's car alone set him back between 4 million and 10 million euros.
"The pride of the collection, Hitler's car, is going to Moscow," Froehlich said.
Which is more than the Nazi dictator ever managed despite the best efforts of his troops.