My Car Quest

July 20, 2024

The Many Faces of the Ferrari NART Spider

by Mike Gulett –

With the sale of one of the ten Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART* Spiders for $27.5 million at auction in Monterey, California ten years ago in August 2013 there has been an increased interest in the Ferrari NART Spider. It turns out there are more Ferrari NART Spider models than just the 275 GTB/4.

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

Another model of the NART Spider is shown here – a 1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider that I ran across at a local car show many years ago. Luigi Chinetti Jr. designed this model as he did the Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spider that is discussed later.

The 275 GTB/4 NART Spider was designed by Sergio Scaglietti and the 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider was a complete re-body of the 365 GTB/4 Daytona by Michelotti. This rather un-attractive Ferrari is also discussed below.

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

In the late 1960s, Ferrari built 168 examples of the 365 GTC, which was almost identical in appearance to the 330 GTC – the biggest difference being the slightly larger engine.

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

Ferrari also produced twenty 365 GTS models. This Spider shown here is not one of those twenty.

Luigi Chinetti, Jr. has been quoted as saying he always wanted to build something different than the 365 GTS. Chinetti changed the original Pininfarina designed front end to look a little more sportier in his opinion. From the rear view this NART Spider looks the same as the Pininfarina design except for the location of the gas filler and of course the NART badge.

The starting car for this conversion was a coupe and not the GTS because Chinetti said the coupe was cheaper and easier to buy.

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

The California based owner of this NART Spider, Harry Gibson, bought it in 1987 sight unseen and had it shipped from New York to California. He then sent it to the well known, late Bill De Carr in Southern California who had an excellent reputation for body work.

De Carr refinished the paint and corrected some of the panel fit. In 1990 De Carr managed to get this Spider invited to be shown at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. This NART Spider has received awards, including one that could not be accepted at Pebble Beach in 1990 because the car had a mechanical failure that made it impossible to drive across the platform.

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

Afterwards the 365 GT NART Spider was garaged and rarely came out, remaining out of public view for more than twenty years. The owner had been showing it many years ago, which explains why I saw it at a local show and had not seen it before.

Bill De Carr also restored an Iso Grifo Targa and the AMX/3 by Bizzarrini that I have written about. The AMX/3 was at Pebble Beach in 1990 on the same field at this Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider.

It is a beautiful Ferrari and I am very happy the owner brought it out of storage to share once again.

Other Ferrari NART Spiders

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

Ferrari 275 GTB4 Competezione

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 Competezione

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

The $27.5 million Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spider

Many years ago Ron Spangler of “Prancing Horse Farm” in Maryland contacted me and wanted to let me know about a very special Ferrari NART Spider that he had for sale.

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spider

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spider

Luigi Chinetti, Jr., son of the U.S. Ferrari importer, sketched the design in the early 1960s and Chinetti Sr. sent the sketch and a damaged 1961 250 GTE he had just bought back from a customer to Italy. Carrozzeria Fantuzzi then turned the sketch into reality.

Fantuzzi was well known for his work with Maserati but he also built many Ferrari race cars.

“Prancing Horse Farm” says this about this NART Spider,

* Mileage: 29,000

* Engine: 3.0 Liter V12 with 6 Weber Carbs

* Transmission: 5 Speed Manual

* Body Style: Targa, 2 Door

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spyder engine

This Ferrari represents the only period re-body of a GTE, and was done under the strict guidance of Chinetti’s North American Racing Team.

The car was completed in time to sit on display at the 1965 San Francisco Sports Car show, and it later appeared at the New York and Miami Auto Shows.

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spyder Interior

This is a one-off special Ferrari 250 GT with a unique history – re-bodied in the early 1960s.

1961 Ferrari 250 GT Fantuzzi NART Spyder

Chinetti is happy they were able to save a car and to create something that a customer wanted and something that is still so special these many years later.

Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider – A Tale Of Two Ferrari NART Spiders

Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider

Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider

Above I mentioned the Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider that sold at the RM auction in Monterey in August 2013 for $27.5 million.

But did you know about the other Ferrari NART Spider that sold at auction that same weekend?

This 1971 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider sold at the Gooding auction in Pebble Beach in August 2013 for $720,000.

Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider

Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider

Gooding said,

* An Exceedingly Rare Michelotti-Bodied Daytona

* Commissioned by Luigi Chinetti for His Wife Marion

* Displayed at the 1980 Torino Motor Show

* Loaned to the Le Mans Museum Between 1981 and 1982

* Pristine Original Condition with Only 1,570 Miles Since 1976

* Maintained for Over 20 Years in an Important Private Collection

* Complete with Tool Kit, Hardtop, and Ferrari Classiche Attestation of Historic Interest

* Documented by Ferrari Historian Marcel Massini

That is a huge difference in price – $27.5 million and $720,000! They are both Ferrari NART Spiders but the numbers and letters that follow the Ferrari in their model designation make all the difference. One is a 275 GTB/4 and the other is a 365 GTB/4. I believe the designer also makes a big difference.

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

The 275 GTB/4 is one of the most beautiful Ferrari styles ever and it has a racing heritage (the Spider has a racing heritage too). The Spider was created by merely cutting off the top – thus leaving most of the beautiful body style in place. Only ten were made.

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

The 365 GTB/4 Daytona NART Spider was a complete re-body by Michelotti, so there is nothing left that resembles the original 365 GTB/4 Daytona. Less than ten were made – but that doesn’t matter. It has no race heritage and the looks, well, are a matter of personal taste.

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

So is the huge price difference worth it? At least one buyer and seller thought so.

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

Ferrari 275 GTB/4 NART Spider

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Ferrari Logo

1968 Ferrari 365 GT NART Spider

*NART stands for North American Racing Team.

Summary
The Many Faces of the Ferrari NART Spider
Article Name
The Many Faces of the Ferrari NART Spider
Description
Some of the many models of the Ferrari NART Spider are shown and discussed here.
Author

Comments

  1. Glenn Krasner says

    Since Chinetti started with the 365 GT coupe, because it was cheaper and easier to buy, for the conversion to the for the 365 GT NART Spyder, I am curious to know what reinforcement was done to the frame and/or body, since cutting off the roof significantly reduces the structural rigidity and integrity of the car. Maybe I am idiot (opinions vary), but I would have preferred to buy the 365 GTS’ and converted them, for it would have involved not cutting off roofs and structurally reinforcing the cars. Glenn in the Bronx, NY.

  2. Rollie Langston says

    Thanks for the interesting story on some famous Ferrari based Spyders. Ferrari is perhaps best known for their beautiful berlinetta coupes, but Chinetti recognized the importance of convertible Spyders for the US market, especially sunny southern California. The 250 California Spyder is also a big part of this story, also influenced by Chinetti. Most of today’s supercars also offer Spyder variants. Great pictures of great cars.

  3. Harry Gibson says

    Hello,

    Having owned this 365 GT NART Spyder for so Many years.
    I became aware that 97% of Ferrari enthusiasts did not know or believed this N.A.R.T.
    Spyder existed. I believe it’s a beautiful Spyder. Luigi Chinetti, did
    a excellent job on the design of this Ferrari. I have been fortunate to have been able
    to own such an automobile. Bill De Carr my friend helped me greatly with his magic.
    As he he had a way of making a fine car even more beautiful.

    Thanks Lou. Thanks Bill.

    Harry Gibson

    • Greg Bailey says

      Hi Harry this is Greg Bailey. The guy with the big black beard in Torrington CT who interpreted Luigi’s design. I liked the moving of the gas fill to the middle of the rear cowl. Why did you delete the windshield trim? let me guess? By the way this car was a blast to drive .As far as structural rigidity is concerned there is another heavier rocker panel structure I added under the outer rocker. George Murtha is alive and well . Greg

  4. Ken Phillips says

    2 days ago a Ferrari Testarossa sold on BAT .
    I know this car. A Stramen conversion including soft top.
    The same owner has owned it for over 30years. I think only one other owner.. I drove it on a trip from VA to PA .
    It was well done . Additional stiffining worked. The Testarossa looked good.

  5. I was attending a car show in Connecticut back in 85/86 ? Proudly sitting amongst some very insignificant vehicles was a NART Spyder. This was not a recreation. I would like to post a photo but I’m unable to get around your photo requirements. Can I send it to your email address ?

  6. Will do Mike I appreciate you doing this for me. Was wondering if anyone could shed light on the car’s history…Jack

  7. This was at the car show held at the Southburuy Training School just outside Waterbury around 85/86.

  8. Thanks Mike ! Hopefully someone will recognize the car ? Massachusetts license plate. Car was sitting by itself with no one around to answer questions. The exposed truck hinge’s did cause quite a lively discussion.

  9. Maybe not ?

  10. Mike obviously no one cares but the car looks exactly like the last three photos in your article.

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