New world record for the most expensive camera: 2,790,000 USD for Leica 0-Serie

At the May 12th WestLicht Photographica auction in Vienna, a new record was set for the most expensive camera in the world – this Leica 0-Serie camera with serial number 116 sold for 2,160,000 EUR (around 2,790,000 USD). The previous world record  was also for a Leica 0-Serie Nr.107 that sold for 1.3 million EUR (1.9 million USD) last year.

This Leica M3 Gold sold for EUR 360.000 (around 460,000 USD):

Leica M3 gold

Leica M3 gold © WestLicht Photographica Auction

All auction results can be found on (PDF file available here), all M cameras are listed here.

Video of the actual bidding for the Leica 0-Series camera:

All expectations of the 21st WestLicht camera auction were exceeded: For the 5th time the world record for the most expensive camera ever sold was broken at a WestLicht auction in Vienna with a winning bid of 2,160,000,- EUR including buyer’s premium.

The third of the 629 lots to be auctioned, with a starting price of 300,000 EUR was an extremely rare exemplar of the Leica 0-Series, a test camera from the year 1923. In an exciting bidding war between the room, phone and internet bidders, the price of the camera climbed to a new world record. The bidder who secured the rare exemplar would like to remain anonymous.

Further highlights of the camera-auction:
One of only two existing M3 Leica cameras (Lot 113), that was officially gold plated by Leitz, was sold for 360,000 Euro (starting price 40,000; Estimate 70,000 – 90,000 Euro).

A 250FF (Lot 34), one of the most exiting screw-mount Leica cameras ever offered for sale in auction, climbed from a starting price of 12,000 to 120,000 EUR.

An Elcan 1/90mm + KE-7A (186) had a 228,000 Euro collector’s value.
(Starting price 30,000). This ultra-rare and extremely fast lens was produced for the US Navy, only 10 of these were made. This is the first lens in the series and was for the first time offered in auction!

In total 95 percent of the camera lots were sold, and the total turnover of the 21st camera auction was 5,351,000 EUR.

All images © WestLicht Photographica Auction

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