My Car Quest

August 21, 2018

A Ferrari 250 GTO To Roll Across The Block In Monterey

by Wallace Wyss –

At last, at Monterey this year, the old question posed by Ferrari collectors since the late ’60s will be answered: What’s worth more– a series I 250GTO with its fastback roof, or a series II with the all new body shape incorporating a notchback 250LM inspired roof?

Ferrari 250 GTO

The really ironic thing is that, if the answer is the Series I, some owners of Series I cars back in the day made a big mistake when they had their bodywork converted to Series 2, figuring the new body shape was more scientifically tested (Pininfarina being in on the Series 2 where the Series I was designed by Ing. Bizzarrini by guess and by gosh, his tests consisting of naught more than midnight autostrada tests on different noses and tail configurations). At least four of the Series I cars were believed to have been upgraded in period to Series 2 bodywork.

Ferrari 250 GTO

The venue will be the RM Sotheby’s auction in late August, in the Monterey Conference Center in Monterey, California. The 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, chassis 3413 GT, was the third of only 36 Ferrari 250 GTO cars ever built (not counting three prototypes). Although RM Sotheby’s is estimating it will fetch $45 million this was before a Series I recently sold privately for a reported $70 million.

The auction company is saying that the car for sale was a test car driven by Phil Hill for the 1962 Targa Florio road race before being sold on to privateers, who raced the car with great success.

Ferrari 250 GTO

It competed in 20 races in period, and never failed to finish and was never involved in an accident. It still retains its original engine, gearbox, and rear axle, as well as the Series II body wrought by Carrozzeria Scaglietti in 1964.

After its racing career, the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO had an “unbroken ownership history” which is “auction speak” for we-can-trace-all-the-owners and they identify the seller as Dr. Greg Whitten, Chairman of Numerix, who is not only an avid car enthusiast and but the former chief software architect at Microsoft. He ran the car in various events for two decades.

Although of course the mid-engined 250LMs are rarer, and a 250LM won LeMans overall, where GTOs only did well in their respective classes, the 250GTO is the more highly valued. According to Shelby Myers, who is titled as a “Car Specialist” at RM Sotheby’s, this is due to its key evolution as a combo street/race car.

Ferrari 250 GTO

Says Myers: “Due to the evolution of technology and safety regulations that followed, the GTO was essentially the final true road racer, marking the end of an era when drivers really got their hands dirty. This was the last car that you could park in your garage, drive to the track, win the race, and then drive home.”

Only 36 Ferrari 250 GTOs were ever built – 33 Series I cars and 3 Series II (with a further 3 as 330 GTOs, only two came with the 250GTO body style, 330LMB 3765LM and 400 Superamerica 4561SA. All 36 are assumed to have survived with at least 32 well documented.

The car has shown handsome appreciation in 18 years of Whitten’s ownership. Back in 2000, Whitman reportedly paid $7 million for the GTO.

Photos above by Patrick Ernzen ©2018 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s.

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Wallace Wyss

Wallace Wyss

 
 
 
 
 
THE AUTHOR: Wallace Wyss, besides writing this story, while wearing his fine art beret, also painted portraits of the 250GTO series 2 cars shown here. Oil-on-canvas prints are available. Those interested can write Wyss at Photojournalistpro2@gmail.com.

 
 

 

 

Ferrari 250 GTO Art by Wallace Wyss

Ferrari 250 GTO Art by Wallace Wyss

Ferrari 250 GTO Art by Wallace Wyss

Ferrari 250 GTO Art by Wallace Wyss

Ferrari 250 GTO Art by Wallace Wyss

Ferrari 250 GTO Art by Wallace Wyss

Summary
A Ferrari 250 GTO To Roll Across The Block In Monterey
Article Name
A Ferrari 250 GTO To Roll Across The Block In Monterey
Description
This 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, chassis 3413 GT, will be auctioned off at the RM Sotheby's auction in late August, at the Monterey Conference Center in Monterey, California.
Author

Comments

  1. Optimader says:

    Two sales at auction only prove what two people are willing to pay, no?
    In any case, considering the present valuations on these cars, a relatively trivial investment to put the body back into a previous form if the owner desires.

  2. wallace wyss says:

    What do you think the cost would be? I guess it depends on the country, maybe Argentina would be lower cost than Italy. But the future buyer would have to be assured that a genuine unwrecked-and-rebuilt series 1 was accurately measured first to guide the shape of the new body. Then you might have the irony that the Series 2, with all this publicity, might eventually be worth more than the old style body so retro-=bodying it would be a waste of money!

  3. THIS CAR IS LIKE VIAGRA FOR ME. BIZZARRINI WAS A GENUS. JOE ALPHABET WAS WAY AHEAD OF HIS TIME, REPLICATING THIS CAR BODY PARTS, TO THE, DATSON, 2240 Z CARS. HE GOT SUED BY FERRARI FOR DOING IT TOO.

  4. optimader says:

    “What do you think the cost would be? I guess it depends on the country, maybe Argentina would be lower cost than Italy. ”
    Let say ~1% of the purchase cost as a wildass guess.

    “But the future buyer would have to be assured that a genuine unwrecked-and-rebuilt series 1 was accurately measured first to guide the shape of the new body. ”

    I would suggest this approach. .
    http://3dengineers.co.uk/portfolio/

    3D scan and create 3D model, convert solids model into ~6″ CL to CL digital slices, use digital slice models to water-jet cut plywood slices and build a buck. From there it is conventional craftwork

    Reality is no two vintage hand built cars are identical at some level of resolution. I have seen asymmetry side to side on vintage hand beaten panel cars, and I am confident it is no different for a GTO. Enzo thought of the body/chassis as a necessary feature to drive his beloved engines around a track.

    “Then you might have the irony that the Series 2, with all this publicity, might eventually be worth more than the old style body so retro-bodying it would be a waste of money!’

    well that would be a risk , wouldn’t it!

  5. Trevor Gaunt says:

    What about a vote? I prefer the look of the series 1. Does anyone disagree?

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