China's growing band of status-conscious multimillionaires will get a chance to show off the extent of their wealth when a unique Ferrari comes up for auction in Beijing next week.
But the winning bidder will have to dig deep to claim the bragging rights because the car in question - a 599 GTB Fiorano China Limited Edition - is literally one of a kind.
The Ferrari sports a head-turning, trompe l'œil paint job that draws inspiration from a famous style of porcelain produced during the Song Dynasty (AD960-AD1279).
The hand-painted celadon green-coloured "cracked-glaze" exterior finish is the work of Lu Hao, one of China's most successful avante-garde artists.
(The inspiration for the Ferrari colour is, by the way, a little more high brow than one used by Toyota for its new concept sports car unveiled at the Tokyo motor show last week. The car maker's chief engineer has admitted that the distinctive watermelon red used on the FT-86 takes its cue from the colour of a Japanese monkey's bum.)
Lu, who is also a Ferrari owner, has customised another 11 of the 599 China Limited Edition's cars but only the 12th has the distinctive cracked-glaze exterior finish.
The cars also have a number of exclusive interior features, including a carved jade starter button, a rev-counter inscribed in ancient Chinese characters and a luggage set featuring motifs of the Silk Road.
Ferrari has added the HGTE package (Handling GT Evoluzione) to the 599 China Limited Edition to give the car an even sportier look and feel. As if the standard 620 horsepower (462kW) 6.0 litre V12 engine was not enough.
The auction is being held to mark the company's fifth anniversary in China and draws on the long history of commercial and cultural contact between China and Italy that began in the 13th century when Marco Polo's father and uncle visited the court of Kublai Khan, the Mongol emperor of China.
But, on the back of China's still-booming economy, there is likely to be no shortage of bidders when the Ferrari goes up for auction on November 3.
A report published by Capgemini and Merrill Lynch in June said that the number of individuals in China worth $US1 million or more surpassed that of Britain for the first time last year.
The annual Hurun Report, the Chinese equivalent of the BRW Rich list, said the average wealth of the people on the list jumped by almost a third to $US571 million this year. China has 130 known dollar billionaires, up from 101 last year.
China's appetite for car ownership is also expanding dramatically. This year China overtook the US to become the biggest global car market. In Beijing, 1500 new cars hit the road each day.
The proceeds from the sale of the Ferrari will go towards funding an educational program geared to helping young Chinese students study in the automotive engineering field.
The record price paid for a car was in May this year when a 1957 Ferrari 250 TR was sold at auction for $US12.2 million. The car was one of only 22 built between 1957 and 1958.
Incidentally, the traditional technology of firing the celadon cracked-ceramic glaze that was the inspiration for the Ferrari's unique paint job was this month added to the UNESCO's Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
The method, which dates back about 1700 years, was developed in what is now the city of Longquan in Zhejiang province. Among the many quaint traditions still practised are the rules that dictate when the firing of the ceramics should be halted:
a) when someone in the village has died and has not yet been buried;
b) when someone is crying and
c) when someone is passing "carrying a dung barrel".