Guinness World Records has confirmed a new record for the Most expensive camera sold at auction, after a prototype Leica 35mm film camera was sold to a private collector from Asia for a staggering €2.4 million (£2.13 million; $2.97 million).
The sale took place at the WestLicht Photographica auction in Vienna, Austria, on 10 March 2018 – six years after the previous record holder was sold there for €2.16 million (£1.73 million; $2.8 million). This was also a Leica 0-series No.122 camera.
The bidding started at €400,000 (£356,000; $492,000) but ended at six times this price.
The early model was one of just 25 Leica 0-series cameras produced in Germany for testing back in 1923.
Founder of Leica, Ernst Leitz, wanted to see if people liked the cameras. 95 years later, Leica has gone on to become an extremely successful high-end camera brand.
There are only 12 known Leica 0-series prototype cameras still in circulation and they have been steadily raising in value over the past few years – from €362,413 in 2007 to €2.40 million in 2018.
Of course, the price that collectors will pay for the retro device depends heavily on its condition.
"The remarkable price certainly also reflects the camera’s fantastic original condition," said WestLicht, talking about the new record on their website.