Built to compete in the 1965 World Sports Prototype Championships, the Ferrari Dino 166P is one of those achingly beautiful early racing Ferraris. Sadly, only one model was ever built. Despite only competed in a small handful of races, however, this Dino was by no means a failure. In fact, it won first place at Vallelunga with Giancarlo Baghetti behind the wheel. Other notable performances include winning pole position at Monza and a fourth-place finish at the 1,000 km at the Nürburgring.
Mechanically, the most remarkable feature of the 166P has to be its rear-mounted, double-ignition 1.6-litre V6 making 175 bhp, or 110 bhp/litre. Maximum power was developed at 9000 rpm, while the fuel was fed to the engine through three Weber carburettors. Now, that power figure might not sound all that impressive for a racing car, but the small-displacement engine helped the car achieve a superlight 586 kilo kerb weight, so 175 bhp proved to be more than enough power on the track. In fact, the Dino 166P was able to keep up with cars that sported engines double or even triple the size of its V6 during the race at the Nürburgring.
Under the steel-tube frame, an independent wishbone suspension kept the 166P planted at both ends, while each corner received disc brakes. The transmission was a 5-speed manual. This recipe, paired with the car’s light weight, created an exceedingly agile vehicle that more than held its own in the corners.
The gorgeous, swooping body lines on this two-seat Berlinetta were complemented by a bubble-like cockpit makes for an extremely attractive car with excellent sightlines. At the end of its short racing career, the sole Dino 166P was used to create the open-top Dino 206 SP, which raced in the European Mountain Championship, winning the title in 1965. Even though it lived a very short life, the Dino 166P leaves a lasting impression due to its successful outings on the track and stunning bodywork.