When it comes to luxury sports cars, there’s no doubt Ferrari ranks high on the list. Classics like the 1948 Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta, 1967 Ferrari 365 GTB4 Daytona, and 1975 Ferrari 308 GTS, among others, are just some of Ferrari’s greatest hits, but there’s one model that tends to be overlooked: the Ferrari 250 GT. The 250 is Ferrari’s first volume-produced model and most successful early line. The series of sports cars and grand tourers were in production from 1952 to 1964. One of the more refined and practical road-going Ferraris, as well as sporty and full of historical significance, is the Ferrari 250 GT. The landmark model was successful on both the road and the track.
A 1960 Ferrari 250 GT ‘Series II’ Coupe was auctioned by Bonhams on October 27 at its second edition of the Padua Auction at the Auto e Moto d’Epoca exhibition in northern Italy. Bonhams offered a broad range of classic and collectors’ cars, with beauties like a 1969 FIAT 500 L Saloon, a 1973 Alfa Romeo Spider 1300 Junior, and a 1973 Jaguar E-Type Series 3 V12 Roadster, among others, joining the 250 GT on the auction block.
How Pininfarina shaped the 250
How did the 250 line come to be? The 250 Europa, built from 1953 to 1954, was the first of the line and only had 21 produced. Before the 250 Europa, Ferrari’s road-going coupes and convertibles were built to order and in small numbers. They used a sports-racing chassis, many of which were from Ghia and Vignale of Turin and Touring of Milan. No two cars were alike as there was no standardization for the bodies.
The 250 Europa marked the beginning of a significant change in Ferrari’s coach builder. Ferrari switched from the previously favored Vignale to Pinin Farina, now Pininfarina. Pininfarina eventually created the body of a new Ferrari 250 GT road car, which was publicly displayed at the Geneva Salon in March 1956. The true beginning of a series production began with the “notchback” Coupe on the 250 GT chassis, in which about 353 were built between 1958 and 1960 with chassis sequences 0841 to 2081. Cars could still be ordered with customizations due to the still relatively small scale of production.
Developments in the 250 GT
The 250 GT saw some significant developments during its production. The original 3.0-litre engine was replaced by the twin-distributor 128D. In 1960, that was updated to the outside-plug 128F engine. The four-wheel disc brakes were used in late 1959 and a four-speeds-plus-overdrive gearbox in 1960, providing the 250 GT with stopping power to match its speed.
The auctioned 250 GT, with coachwork by Pininfarina and chassis no. 2003, was completed in September 1960 and sold new in Milan to Niccolò De Nora that month. It was originally finished in Grigio Conchiglia with Nero part-leather interior. The GT was updated in 1981 to a white exterior and red interior with a re-trim by Luppi. It is equipped with the Tipo 128F engine, which was rebuilt in 2011, disc brakes, and overdrive transmission. There was also an overhaul of the rear mechanicals including the suspension and fuel tank in 2013. The car comes with a Massini Report with a list of its past owners, all in italy, up to 2017 and other information and invoices. There’s even a photography of Enzo Ferrari seated on the GT in the Monza pits in 1961. The GT sold for €508,196, or $579,191. Learn More