Rare Opportunity: Saleen S1 Prototype, the Sole Running Example, Hits eBay Auction Block

Saleen S1 Prototype (carscoops.com)

Exclusive Chance for Collectors as the Only Functional Saleen S1 Prototype Seeks a New Home

In a unique opportunity for car collectors, a pre-production prototype of the Saleen S1, believed to be the sole operational unit among its peers, is currently up for auction on eBay. This elusive mid-engined sportscar, boasting the only functional drivetrain among Saleen S1 prototypes, offers a rare chance for enthusiasts to acquire a piece of automotive history.

Limited Success of the Saleen S1:
Despite its debut at the 2017 LA Auto Show, the Saleen S1 has faced challenges, with a “coming soon” note still present on Saleen’s official website six years later. The prototype on auction, distinct as the only running example, presents a compelling proposition for collectors given the limited success of the model.

Unique Ownership and Motivation for Sale:
The prototype is part of a renowned Saleen collector’s lineup, also recognized as a significant investor in the company. The decision to part with this rare vehicle is attributed to the collector’s need to downsize his collection following the sale of one of his warehouses. Notably, the collector possesses an extensive array of Saleen S1 Cup racecars among his offerings.

Distinctive Features and Condition:
Originally finished in Berylium Orange, the prototype underwent a repaint in Lizstick Red, a color favored by Steve Saleen’s wife, Liz. With less than 1,000 miles (1,610 km) on the odometer, the vehicle remains in commendable condition, despite exhibiting a few rough elements inherent to pre-production models. Having been featured in shows and promotional videos, including appearances with Jason Statham, the prototype was retired from Saleen’s fleet in 2021.

Technical Specifications and Track-Focused Design:
The Saleen S1 prototype is equipped with a mid-mounted turbocharged 2.5-liter engine generating 450 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque, channeled through a six-speed manual gearbox to the rear axle. Featuring carbon fiber bodywork and an aluminum chassis, the car weighs 2,685 lbs, emphasizing its performance-oriented design with double wishbone suspension, adjustable coilovers, and Brembo brakes.

Auction Details and Future Possibilities:
While the prototype is currently limited for track use and lacks a VIN, the auction presents the potential for a street-legal conversion, albeit involving paperwork and modifications. At the time of reporting, the highest bid had reached $75,300, falling short of the reserve price. Bidders have two more days to participate in the eBay auction, offering a thrilling opportunity to kick off the new year with an exceptional addition to their collections.

As the auction unfolds, collectors and automotive enthusiasts eagerly await the fate of this singular Saleen S1 prototype, poised to make a significant impact on the collector’s market.