In 1968, Ferrari saw it fit to replace the four-year-old 275 GTB/4. Its replacement was codenamed the “Daytona” in honor of Ferrari’s 24 Hours of Daytona win, but Ferrari had no plans to use this name for the production model, despite the outcry from enthusiasts.
In 1968, the GTB/4 was introduced and Ferrari enthusiasts took it upon themselves to dub it the Daytona. The nickname was so popular that the GTB/4 became almost more noticeable under its nickname than its given name. In the same model year, a rare convertible model was released based on the same GTB/4 chassis.
Ferrari did not stray too awfully far for the name of this convertible model, as they simply dropped the “B” in “GTB” and replaced it with an “S,” which stands for Spyder, creating the GTS/4. There were several models of the GTS/4, including: European-spec RHD, US-spec LHD and European-spec LHD. The latter of the group is the rarest, as only 18 of the 122 Daytona Spyders built were Euro-spec LHD.
If owning one of these masterpieces is something you would like to do, but never thought you could get your hands on one, RM Auctions has solved that part of the equation. On May 12, 2012 in Monaco, RM Auctions will be auctioning off a 1971 version of the Ferrari 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spyder. This means you can not only own one of the rarest Ferraris, but also the especially rare LHD Euro-spec model!
Click past the jump to read our full review on this legendary machine.
The exterior of the Ferrari 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spyder was nothing short of beautiful when it originally debuted in 1968. The 365 was one of the final Ferraris to be 100 percent hand built. The entire body, except the aluminum doors, hood, and trunk, was made from steel that was painstakingly hammer formed and hammer welded to perfection. The three excepted body components were made of aluminum alloy.
This model in particular is black in color, but it was originally Blu Dino with a white stripe, and is absolutely flawless. In the mid-1990s, the owner at the time, Jim Mathews, completely restored the vehicle and it has stayed in this impeccable shape since then with very limited driving.
At the front of this classic Ferrari you have a sloped nose that features popup headlights, which in the original design were fixed headlights with Perspex, a compound similar to Plexiglas, covering them. In order to comply with the U.S. ban on covers over headlights, Ferrari converted the headlights to popup style.
The marker lamp and turn signal assemblies actually stretch all the way to the outer side of the popup headlight covers and wrap around the front fender, as they taper into almost a point just in front of the front wheels.
The hood features two recessed air dams that appear to have no real mechanical function. These ducts may, however, provide additional airflow to the engine compartment for cooling. Regardless of their actual purpose, or lack thereof, they definitely add some character to an otherwise vanilla-looking hood.
Stretching down the beltline on the sides of this Ferrari, between the front and rear wheels, is a small indentation that breaks up the smooth profile appearance of this GTS/4 Daytona Spyder, which again adds character to the car to prevent it from becoming boring. An interesting note on the doors; you may notice that there is no traditional door handle to open them from the outside. Well, if you have a closer look on the top, rearmost section of the door, you will notice a small chrome lever. This level is the door handle. Ferrari eliminated the door skin-mounted handle to help keep with the streamlined appearance of the rest of the body.
On the backside is where you truly find out that this is the body of a Ferrari, as it features the quad lighting pattern that has become the staple of all Ferrari vehicles. Beneath the fully restored two-piece rear bumper is a set of dual exhausts, with each side having dual outlets, creating a faux quad exhaust. Also on the rear is a retractable antenna, which is just another addition to help maintain the sleek appearance of this famed roadster.
Throughout the exterior of this beauty there are small touches of chrome that are just enough to set it off. Ferrari definitely nailed it with this body, as its engineers found the perfect balance between sleek, sexy, and simple. Add in the fact that the restoration is A-1 and you have yourself a show winner.
As beautiful as the exterior is, the interior is just as good and maybe even better. Keep in mind that a lot of the interior on this car is not original, as according to the VIN, it originally had a Nero interior.
The new interior features beautiful tan leather seats with black stripes on the lower and back cushions. This tan leather also wraps the entire center console and the door panels. The door panel inserts also feature the black stripe feature that the seats do.
The dashboard looks to be wrapped in black suede and features all of the factory instrumentation. This instrumentation has everything you would expect from a Ferrari, including: speedometer, tachometer, oil pressure gauge, oil temperature gauge, water temperature gauge, amp meter, and a clock.
In the center of the dashboard you have four vertical levers and two knobs, which obviously control the very simple heating and ventilation system – no A/C on this car. The steering wheel is your standard three arm wheel with the signature Ferrari horse as its horn button.
Though it lacks A/C, this classic Ferrari does offer a few amenities. First is the center console-mounted AM/FM radio, but we are uncertain if that is factory or not. It definitely looks good enough to be factory though. You also get power windows to help compensate for the lack of A/C.
Quite an amazing interior, but we are rather disappointed to find out that it is not the factory design.
Engine and Drivetrain
The engine on the Ferrari 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spyder is one of the best of its era. The V-12 block is the exact same one used on the GTB/275 that came before it, but Ferrari increased its displacement from 3.3 liters to 4.4 liters. This 4.4-liter V-12 comes with a factory cold air intake box and six dual-choke Weber carbs feeding it plenty of fuel.
Granted, the six carbs make this car a bear to keep in tune, but the resulting performance makes it worthwhile. This 4.4-liter V-12 pumps out an impressive-for-the-era 352 horsepower and 315 pound-feet of torque, both at 7,500 rpm.
Fortunately, Ferrari fitted the 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spyder with a five-speed transmission, making it much more tolerable than the more common four-speed option of the era. This five-speed transmission throwing power to the rear wheels combines with the 4.4-liter V-12 to allow this drop-top Ferrari to hit a max speed nearing the 175-mph mark.
Needless to say, for a car entering the era of emission vampires, it definitely pumps out a ton of power. Sure, it is not in the class with today’s V-12s, but modern computer controls allow for a lot more tinkering than was possible on these all mechanical beasts of the early-70’s.
Handling and Braking
On the corners you have independent wishbone suspension, with coil springs and shocks. This allows each wheel to move up and down without disturbing the opposite wheel, helping keep more of each tire on the road, thereby increasing its handling capabilities.
Bringing this 70s supercar to a halt are four disc brakes, powered by hydraulics. These aren’t your typical early-70s hydraulic disc brakes that require practically standing on the brake pedal in emergency situations. Just like all modern braking systems, the Ferrari 365 GTS/4 Daytona Spyder’s system uses a vacuum brake booster to multiply your pressure on the pedal.
Now comes the dream killer: the price. You are looking at the rarest trim level of one of the rarest Ferrari’s in the world, so $100K, $200K, not even $500K will cover buying this car. Nope, to get this rare beast in your garage, you’ll need to pony up an estimated €800,000 to €1,000,000 ($1,050,559 to $1,313,199).
This is a once-in-a-lifetime type of car, so there is no competition available for it.
We absolutely love this car. Everything about us makes us wish we had $1 million to head to Monaco with and blow it all on one hunk of sexy metal. Having said that, we have to remember that this car is not all original. Yes, NADA claims a mint condition 1971 GTS/4 Daytona values at $1.3 million, but that assumes it is in its factory restored condition.
Someone ultimately will pay near or at the estimated fee for it, as factory-built Euro-spec Spyders are so hard to come by. If you have the means and desire to convert this beautiful Ferrari back into its original color and interior setup, you will likely increase its value, but that involves completely tearing down this impeccably restored car.
We are on the fence on this one, so it really depends on how comfortable you are purchasing a car of this value without it being an original.
Powerful V12 for its era
Rarest of rare vehicles
Not in original condition
Price is pretty painful