The Ferrari 250 GTO hails from that great period of motor racing where it ran against the likes of the Jaguar E-Type and the Shelby Cobra. Even though the FIA required carmakers to manufacture 100 examples of their racing cars, Enzo Ferrari was able to skirt the rules through the creative arrangement of the cars and their chassis numbers, so only 39 total 250 GTOs were ever produced. This extremely low volume has no doubt led to the car’s astronomical values in recent years.
The 250 GTO was at the forefront of automotive technology, being one of the earliest cars designed with the help of a wind tunnel. Sergio Scaglietti oversaw the final design, and the result was an achingly gorgeous body Engine was the Tipo 168/62 Comp 3.0 L V12, famous for propelling the 250 Testa Rossa to victory at Le Mans. In the 250 GTO, the V12’s 300 bhp was able to propel the car all the way to a 280 km/h top speed. The transmission was a new 5-speed design using synchromesh for every gear.
The 250 GTO was an immediate hit on the track, finishing second to a 250 Testa Rossa on its very first race on the Sebring circuit. The GTO eventually racked up enough wins to hand Ferrari the International Championship for GT Manufacturers in 1962 through 1964. This represented one of the final front-engined racers to compete at such a high level.
Recently, the 250 GTO has risen to fame for reaching the pinnacle of collectability just a few years ago. Notably, Ferrari models make up 5 out of the top 6 most expensive cars ever sold at auction, with a 1962 250 GTO inhabiting the pinnacle of that list, selling for over £26 million in 2014. That represents some amazing appreciation since the car first sold for about £13,000 in 1962. Not surprisingly, 250 GTOs have been owned by an array of rich and famous people, including Nick Mason, Ralph Lauren, and drug kingpin Robert “Chris” Murray.
Andy’s Thoughts – Ferrari 250 GTO
The 60’s was a golden era not just for fashion and music, but in the automotive world. It was the last time that car makers could build cars without heavy regulation applied to the design and was a time when Ferraris where sculpted rather than built. Racing has always meant a lot to Ferrari, and in the 60s one car dominated, the 250 GTO.
But after race season they became almost like a forgotten toy, as the next new racecar was launched being faster and better. At the same time the competition was hotting up and the Ford GT40 met Ferraris performance, and then some. With so few cars made, there were the lucky ones who picked them up cheap, and still have them today. One such couple still drive their car to the track, and then race it.
But a lot is said nowadays about the huge sums of money that these cars change hands for. Is any car worth 30, 40 or $50 million dollars? In parts alone definitely not, but this is so much more than the parts. It’s part of Motor Racing history.
Images Copyright of Ferrari SPA