Celebrities and athletes usually love driving fast, expensive cars. Especially if the owner was a former professional racing driver. In this case, we’re talking about the late Tony Brooks and his Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG.
Shortly after the turn of the century, the racing driver purchased a Mercedes-Benz C-Class. It wasn’t a Ferrari, a Lamborghini, or even a Porsche, but in 2001-2002, Brooks was already 70 years old. Meaning his need for speed was probably satiated after his time as a professional racing driver. However, the C 32 AMG was not to be underestimated. Now, the same vehicle could be yours since it’s just going under the hammer.
Brooks, who was born in 1932 in Dukinfield, Chesire, UK, was known as the “Racing Dentist.” That nickname came to be not just because he was the son of a dental surgeon but also because he had studied the practice himself, too, just before he became a racing driver.
He was training to be a dentist when he got the call to drive a Connaught during a non-championship Syracuse Grand Prix in Sicily, Italy. Luckily, there was no need for that after he won the race.
Brooks raced with Owen Racing Organisation (later British Racing Motors), Vandervell Products, Scuderia Ferrari, and Yeoman Credit Racing, with a total of 39 Formula One Grands Prix participations. He won six Grand Prix and was on the podium ten times, with a total of 75 career points.
During his time, Juan Manuel Fangio, Alberto Ascari, and Stirling Moss were the only other names more successful than Brooks. The Brit almost became a world champion in 1959 when racing for Ferrari but ended up losing to Jack Brabham finishing second. The previous year, he had finished third.
Besides Formula 1, he won the 1,000 km race at Nurburgring and the RAC Tourist Trphy race at Silverstone, racing alongside Stirling Moss. In 1957, he participated at Le Mans, surviving a serious crash during the night.
Given all his accomplishments, he continued to love fast cars in his day-to-day life, too, as he drove a Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG.
The German premium brand introduced the C-Class in 1993, replacing the 190 range, internally known as W201.
The one Tony Brooks had was from the model’s second generation (W203), introduced in March 2000. The C 32 was available between 2001 and 2003, part of the model’s two AMG flavors, alongside the C 30 CDI.
It was the first and last C-Class that featured a supercharged V6 engine.
The six-cylinder M112 engine used a helical twin-screw IHI supercharger. That helped the powerplant produce 349 horsepower (354 ps) and a torque of 332 lb-ft (450 Nm). Surely that doesn’t sound like a lot in current times, but in the early 2000s, those were segment-leading figures.
The C 32 AMG was capable of reaching naught to 62 mph (100 kph) in 5.2 seconds. Those figures weren’t that far off from a Porsche 911 Carrera (996) from the same period, which also needed around 5.2 seconds to sprint to 62 mph from rest.
But the Mercedes-Benz C 32 AMG’s main rival wasn’t Porsche, but a car from the German brand’s longtime rival, BMW, the M3 (E46). The latter had less power and torque than the C 32 AMG, which still could manage 5.5 seconds time from zero to 62 mph (100 kph).
In 2004, Mercedes-Benz replaced the C 32 AMG, giving way to the C 55, introducing a 5.4-liter naturally aspirated V8 engine.
Now that story time is over, let’s take a look at Mr. Brooks’ car, which is now going under the hammer and will be available at Silverstone Auctions during its Race Retro Classic and Competition sale.
The legendary Formula 1 driver was the first and only owner, and, unlike many other celebrity cars, The car was driven a lot since the odometer indicates 120,000 miles or 193,121 kilometers. However, the vehicle seems to be in great condition, showing some age-appropriate exterior scuff marks, and it was produced in February 2002.
Finished in Brilliant Silver combined with a black leather interior, the car, with the chassis number WDC2030652R035160, has a recent MOT certificate and a new battery.
Brooks had also requested to remove the electronic speed limiter when he purchased it new, which is not quite a shock.
The listing mentions the car needs a new SAM (Signal Acquisition Module), and it would include a three-week wait period to order the new unit from Mercedes. The good thing is that the seller is taking care of it, including the costs.
Brooks passed away in 2022 at the age of 90, and prior to his death, he had been the last person to have won a Grand Prix in the 1950s. The car had been in the late racing driver’s care since the purchase, and now the Brooks family is putting it up for sale.
The auction will take place on Saturday, February 25, and Silverstone adds the car is offered without reserve.