Until 1960 Ferrari never had a 2+2 model. They have only received special orderes on models like 195’s, 212’s, 340’s and 342’s. At the Le Mans 24 Hours in June 1960 Ferrari presented the 250 GT 2+2 (known as the GTE), their first real four-seater. The company built 957 units between 1960 and 1963.
The car might be believed to be designed especially for Enzo Ferrari’s father, who according to him "loved the 2+2 … this was his personal car. My father was normally driving himself, but he always had a driver with him, and a little dog. So for him, a two-seat car wasn’t enough."
Designed by Pininfarina, the 250 GTE was based on the 250 GT Coupe, compared to that were 300 mm longer, 60 mm wider and, perhaps most surprisingly, over 50 mm lower and only 80 kilos heavier. The body had an airy cabin section with slim screen pillars, which provided a light and quite roomy leather trimmed interior for the occupants. However, the front seats had to be forward on their runners to provide reasonable rear seat leg room, thus endorsing its 2+2 status rather than claiming to be a full four-seater car, although the rear seats were well upholstered and the occupants had a central arm rest and even an ashtray.
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Under the hood Ferrari placed a single overhead camshaft per bank 3-litre V12 unit, with bore and stroke of 73 x 58.8 mm, that delivered 240 hp at 7000 rpm. The engine was coupled to a four-speed manual gearbox, with an electronically operated overdrive fifth gear. Final drive was through a propeller shaft to the rigid rear axle, with a choice of two ratios. The 0 to 60 mph sprint was made in a little more than 10 seconds, while top speed was of 140 mph.
The front of the car was dominated by a shallow and wide rectangular, egg crate radiator grille with driving lights in its extremities, and a one piece, chrome-plated bumper fitted initially with plain then rubber-faced over-riders below it. Circular side/turn signal lights were provided either side, and above them were the open headlights with slim, concave chrome trim rings. At the rear was a vertical one-piece tail light cluster in the trailing edge of each wing, featuring triple circular lens, from top to bottom: a reflector, turn signal and tail/stop light. There was a similar extended step in the tail panel below the boot lid shut line, as on the Coupé, with a wrap-around chrome-plated bumper fitted initially with plain then rubber-faced over-riders below it.
Ferrari produced the 250 GTE until 1962 with no significant changes. In 1963 the company unveiled a new version powered by a 4,0 liter engined, with the name changed to 330 America. Ferrari built only 15 units of the last models, as in only one year they were replaced by the 330 GT 2+2.