My Car Quest

November 12, 2018

The Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC Test Drive Report

by Mike –

While I was flipping through the December 1957 issue of Road & Track I came across the test drive report for the Ferrari TRC-2500 Testa Rossa. I knew that I had seen this car before although it looked a little bit different.

“Absolutely sensational” proclaimed the Road & Track writers at the article beginning.

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957

I saw this car with the current owner Bruce Meyer in 2011. There is an interesting story behind this car but I am also fascinated with this road test report and with the changes in appearance since 1957.

The hood design has changed since 1957 – likely due to the differences in the engine. The wind screen is also different and there is a passenger seat now where it looks like maybe there was not one in 1957. This likely explains the difference in the wind screen design.

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011 And Bruce Meyer

This car was owned at the time by John von Neumann. The test drive was done by Richie Ginther who also raced this car.

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957

The dashboard layout looks the same. It is difficult to tell if there is a passenger seat in the 1957 photo but a passenger would not have the benefit of a wind screen so it is likely that there is not a passenger seat like there is today.

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011

The car originally came with the Ferrari 2.5 liter 4-cylinder engine. This engine was a 2-liter that had been bored and stroked to 2.5 liters. I previously wrote that only two of these cars were made with this 2.5-liter engine but this article mentions that there were three in the US. So, another mystery around the Ferrari marque.

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957 With The 2.5-Liter 4-Cylinder Engine

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011 With The 3-Liter V12 Engine

In 1958 von Neumann installed a Ferrari 3-liter V12 engine. This is the engine the car has today thanks to a lot of detective work and searching by Bruce Meyer. He not only found the car that was lost but was also able to find the V12 engine that von Neumann had used.

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 1957

The front end design looks the same to me. Very beautiful and it looks fast. According to Road & Track it was fast.

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011

Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC in 2011

The article concluded with this statement “The Ferrari TRC-2500 is without a doubt the most sensationally performing sports car we have ever tested – and we have tested more sports cars than any one person or organization that we know of.”

Yep, I believe that.


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Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC test data

Ferrari Testa Rosa

Summary
The Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC Test Drive Report
Article Name
The Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC Test Drive Report
Description
Ferrari Testa Rossa TRC Test Drive Report from Road & Track in December 1957.
Author

Comments

  1. Mike, the caption under the picture of the original 2.5 liter engine is incorrect: it is a 2.5 liter, dual overhead cam straight 4 cylinder engine, not a V4. But, thanks for this article and the cool pictures of both the old and newer versions of this magnificent car. If “Road and Track” was so floored over by the speed of the 4 cylinder engine car, I don’t even dare to think how fast the 12 cylinder version is!!! Thanks, again! Glenn in the Bronx, NY

  2. ScuderiaPacNW says:

    Have seen pictures of this car before, but thank you so much for the refresher. Looking at this car makes us weak in the knees…absolutely breathtakingly stunning…our vintage sports car dream. Don’t know what else to say, except that this car knocks us out. Thunck…smelling-salts please.

    • Photos of this car in its current form have been published in books and magazines and just as importantly here on My Car Quest.

      The last photo of the engine from overhead is from a book called Curves of Steel.

      This Testa Rossa was also on the cover of that book.

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