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Unbelievable 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO by Scaglietti Could Sell for $60 Million

Car and Driver logo Car and Driver 8/24/2018 Andrew Wendler
Unbelievable 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO by Scaglietti Could Sell for $60 Million: This 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO by Scaglietti is billed as the world’s most important, desirable, and legendary motorcar. Will its auction price live up to the hype?© Provided by Car and Driver This 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO by Scaglietti is billed as the world’s most important, desirable, and legendary motorcar. Will its auction price live up to the hype?

Billed by Sotheby’s as “the world’s most important, desirable, and legendary motorcar,” the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO by Scaglietti certainly has some high expectations to live up to. The example seen here, known among the prancing horse faithful as chassis 3413, is considered by many experts to be the “most authentic and original of all GTO examples” extant and boasts a backstory worthy of the sixty-million dollar hype.

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Ushered into reality at the insistence of legendary Ferrari engineer Giotto Bizzarrini, the 250 GTO replaced the SWB 250 Berlinetta to ensure the manufacturer remained competitive in the newly established International Championship for GT Manufacturers. Marking one the first instances when Ferrari utilized a wind tunnel to evaluate bodywork, Bizzarrini realized the Berlinetta would become unstable around 155-mph, and new a design was needed to compete with new models from Aston-Martin, Jaguar, and Shelby American as well as provide larger wheel openings for the ever-growing size of racing tires. While the new car retained the general 250 GT chassis dimensions and the three-liter short-block Colombo V-12 to ensure it retained full homologation eligibility, the chassis was improved with lighter tubing, stiffer springs, and dual Watts linkages to help stabilize the rear suspension. A new five-speed gearbox was fitted to provide maximum acceleration and top speed.

Driven by F1 and multiple Lemans champ Phil Hill as SEFAC Ferrari’s official practice car for the upcoming 1962 Targa Florio. 3413 was sold just days later to privateer Edoardo Lualdi-Gabardi who took home 1962 Italian GT Championship with the car. Purchased by privateer Corrado Ferlaino ahead of the 1964 International Championship for GT Manufacturers, 3416 was sent to Scaglietti and updated with the lower, more aerodynamically efficient series II coachwork with no rear spoiler. The ensuing season included all the significant players of the day, including Porsche, Ferrari, Gurney, Barth, Shelby, and more; while many of the particulars are lost to time, Ferlaino’s class win in 3413 at the season-ending Targa Florio ensured Ferrari enough points to take home the manufacturer’s championship, beating out Shelby-American 84.54 points to 78.3.

In the late 60s, the car was sold to noted Ferrari collector Neil Corner, who later sold it to Lord Anthony Bamford of Stoke-on-Trent, a collector held in similar esteem. Bamford hung on to the car until the 1980s when it was acquired by Nigel Moores, yet another collector of the marque. The next title holder was Japanese collector Yoshijuki Hayashi, who left the car in the U.K. and used it to participate in European vintage events including the GTO 30th Anniversary Tour in September 1992 and the Goodwood Festival of Speed in June 1993. In April of 1994 the GTO was purchased by Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones of London, then Chairman and CEO of L’Oréal and a former member of the board of directors of Ferrari SpA. Finally, in January 2000, this highly significant Ferrari was purchased by Dr. Gregory Whitten, the current owner and consignor.

Under his care 3413 was regularly exhibited and driven around the world, including four appearances at the Cavallino Classic between 2001 and 2008, four seasons in the Shell Ferrari Historic Challenge between 2001 and 2009, and the GTO 50th and 55th Anniversary tours, just to name a few.

Inspected by representatives from Ferrari’s Classiche department as well as noted Ferrari historian and expert Marcel Massini, 3413’s originality and numbers-matching powertrain (the gearbox and rear axle are currently installed but mated to a non-original engine block; the original engine does, however, come with the car) and well-documented history make it a once-in-a lifetime opportunity.

What is not clear, however, is just how high the bidding will go. To earn the title of “The most expensive car ever sold at auction,” 3413 need only surpass the $34.65 million ($38.115 million with fees, but who’s counting?) paid for a Ferrari GTO in 2014. To earn the title of the world’s most expensive car of public record, the bidding will need to top the $70 million price paid in April of 2018 for a—you guessed it—Ferrari 250 GTO paid by David MacNeil of WeatherTech products fame. While sales numbers of that nature might indicate that the Ferrari market has reached its upper limits, marque expert Massini expects that car, known as 4153GT, to bring “nine figures” in the next five years. While such projections are largely speculation, one thing is for sure: The hammer price of 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO by Scaglietti to be sold at the RM Sothbey’s auction in Monterey during the 2018 Pebble Beach Concours will serve as pretty accurate barometer of where the market is headed. 

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