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SWITZERLAND

Swede faces massive fine over Swiss speeding

Police in Switzerland said Monday that they had seized a Swedish motorist's $240,000 sports car after he was caught doing 290 kilometres per hour (180 mph) on a Swiss motorway.

Swede faces massive fine over Swiss speeding

Swiss officials were unable to say if it was a record because they do not keep such nationwide data, but it “looks very close to one,” federal roads office spokesman Thomas Rohrbach told AFP.

Police in the western canton of Fribourg said in a statement that the 37 year-old driver had to be stopped by a neighbouring police force last Friday after he shot past a permanent speed trap.

His driving licence and 570-horsepower black Mercedes-Benz were seized after he was released from custody, and he could face a fine of up to one million Swiss francs ($962,000) depending on his income.

A local magistrate ordered police to keep the car as security pending a likely court ruling and an eventual sentence.

Driving more than 25 kilometres an hour over the 120-kilometre speed limit on motorways in Switzerland is regarded as a criminal offence, and fines are based on a driver’s income.

The Swedish motorist’s alleged speed goes off the scale and the penalty is at the judge’s discretion, up to a maximum of 1.08 million Swiss francs for speeding, Rohrbach said.

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AUCTION

Abba’s old BMW brings in the money, money, money at auction

Mamma mia! A BMW that once was used by Swedish pop icons Abba around has sold at an auction in Paris.

Abba's old BMW brings in the money, money, money at auction
Abba in their heyday. Photo: TT

A BMW 633 that once belonged to Abba has sold for €34,500 (341,000 kronor) at auction house Sotheby's.

The special piece of automotive heritage, as Sotheby's put it, pulled in beyond initial estimates of 210,000 to 300,000 kronor. 

The BMW followed the band around on European tours in the seventies and was used as a standby vehicle for band members Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson.

It was ordered in Polaris Silver (060) over black leather with a four-speed manual gearbox, the auction house wrote.

The bodywork of the vehicle and its interior are unmarked and it still has its rare TRX alloy wheels, the auctioneers said. 

It came with copies of the original documents signed by Ulvaeus and Andersson.

To see more pictures of the car, see the full listing from Sotheby's here

The sale marks the second time this year that an auction has seen pop stars, Sweden, and auctioned cars crop up in the headlines. Indeed, David Bowie's Volvo 262C pulled in a pretty penny last month when it sold for $216,000.