"A BMW M5 belonging to none other than 2009 Formula One World Champion, Jenson Button, was amongst a collection of high-profile and extremely rare cars that were sold by specialist automotive auctioneers Coys on Saturday 15 January during Autosport International 2011, held at Birmingham’s NEC.
The white supersaloon went under the hammer with the private plate JB05 BAR, referring to Jenson Button’s 2005 season at British American Racing, the team that became Honda, then BrawnGP and, most-recently, Mercedes GP Petronas.
The car has found a good home in Aberystwyth with self-confessed BMW fanatic, David Frith. It joins his already-impressive collection of cars from the Bavarian marque, which includes an M3, an X6 and a 6-Series.
Incredibly, David had no plans to buy the car and had simply come to motorsport show Autosport International for a day out, but having spotted the V10-powered 500bhp monster on the Coys stand, he knew he had to have it!
Speaking this week, David said: “It took me six hours to get to Birmingham to collect the car, but it was worth it! I spent all day Tuesday cleaning it and getting it looking perfect, and I’ve taken it out on my local roads now too. It’s an amazing car, but I haven’t dared to touch the M Button, which gives you access to the full 500bhp, because it’s so fast without it!
“The reaction to the car has been incredible: everyone is interested in seeing a car that was owned by a Formula One World Champion! When I went to get it taxed, they let me keep the original V5 as a souvenir, and my local BMW dealer even wants to use it for a sales promotion. It’s safe to say that I got a bit more than I bargained for with this car!
“Even though this is the fourth BMW in my collection, it’s the only one my wife hasn’t moaned about! We’re both big F1 fans, and she’s a Jenson Button fan, so I think she’s really happy to have a bit of racing history in our garage.”
Also for sale at the auction was an ex-Colin McRae Ford Focus WRC, an ex-Surtees Lotus 18 as well as several other road cars, including a low-mileage XJ220, a Gemballa GTR600 and one of the most controversial cars ever to grace Britain’s road network, the Lotus Carlton."