Almost all the copies of the record, "Do I Love You? (Indeed I Do)," by the Motown singer were destroyed by label boss Berry Gordy after Wilson switched from recording to producing, with only two copies known to have survived, the BBC reported Friday.
Record dealer John Manship of Leicestershire, England, said the buyer wanted to remain anonymous. The seller, Fife disc jockey and record collector Kenny Burrell, told the BBC he put the treasure up for sale 12 years after he also obtained the only other copy of the single from a Canadian dealer for a then-record price of $22,000.
Burrell said he sold the record to enhance his standing as a record collector, adding that it had been stored for many years in a Motown archive in Los Angeles. He played it regularly at clubs in Britain's Northern Soul scene and had it autographed by Wilson eight years ago, which he thought would hinder its value at auction, the broadcaster said.