Of the nine 1957 250 Gran Turismo Berlinetta model Ferraris crafted between November, 1956 and July, 1957, with their distinctive fourteen louvres gracing the rear sail panels, eight survive to this day. The sole causality was crashed in 1967 by Peter Helms and later scrapped for parts by famed Ferrari aficionado Peter Niles. Carrying a Pininfarina designed body built by Scaglietti with the newest lightweight aluminum and Perspex glass encasing a scantly clad interior and equipped with a 2,953 cubic centimeter overhead cam V-12 engine with triple Weber carburetors, a four speed synchromesh manual transmission, alloy drum brakes, an independent wishbone front suspension, and semi-elliptical leaf springs on a live rear axle.
The 1957 Ferrari 250 GT was crafted to excel in the new safer Gran Turismo racing classification born in response to the tragic 1955 accident at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and excel the Berlinetta did. With First Overall finishes at the demanding Tour de France races of 1956, 1957, 1958, and 1959, the 250 GT Berlinetta would unofficially become know at Ferrari as the “Tour de France” or “TdF” model. While Ferrari’s progressive development style and their penchant for hand crafted bodies guaranteed no two Berlinettas would be identical, the styling of these nine 1957 250 GT Berlinettas is distinctive and very sought after by automobile collectors and Ferrari enthusiasts worldwide The 1957 GT Berlinettas were designed with lowered front ends, sharply defined and nearly finned rear fenders, and a flatter, less wrapped rear window than previous Ferrari models. A prominent cold air induction scoop opens up a large portion of the 1957 Berlinetta’s long low hood, but its most defining elements are the fourteen louvres that sweep down the rear sail panels from roof line to rear fenders. Later editions of the GT would reduce the louvres to three, then one or none, making the 1957 a visual standout in the Ferrari pantheon.
The 1957 Ferrari 410 Superamerica Coupe is a super-rare concept car. Only 34 of these Ferrari’s were produced, in three different series. Nearly all of the body work performed on these vehicles was performed by Pinin Farina. Although some of the 410s look alike, the truth is no two cars are exactly the same.
Some of the most notable features on the 410 Superamerica Coupe include a 4.9L, 340 horsepower V-12 engine that is located in the front of the vehicle, from Lampredi. This engine was race-derived, and capable of going a whopping 261kmh, or 162 miles per hour. The vehicle is rear-wheel-drive, and is powered by a manual, 4-speed transmission. There is an independent front-end suspension, double-wishbones and two coil springs and hydraulic disc brakes all around. The Superamerica III of this year contained triple Weber carburetors, which gave it even more power.
The 1957 410 Superamerica Coupe came in two body styles: a 2-door coupe and a 2-door roadster. Total vehicle weight was around 1247kg, or 2749 pounds. Inside the 410, the driver is surrounded by leather. The instrument panel consists of five different gauges, complete with indicator lights for various functions on the vehicle. The lightweight steel tubes that made up each frame were constructed by Sergio Scaglietti, as was each aluminum panel on the vehicle. In fact, the aluminum was hand-formed, meaning each vehicle was a masterpiece.
The original asking price for the 1957 Ferrari 410 Superamerica Coupe at the 1957 New York Auto Show was $16,800. This was an outrageous price, as it was more than two times as much as similar vehicles by other manufacturers. At an auction in January, 2012, this vehicle sold for over $1.8 million dollars. The value of a fully restored model can be as much as $2.25 million dollars.
Although the 1957 Ferrari 410 Superamerica Coupe is ultra-expensive, its handcrafted design and painstaking attention to detail on each of the 34 vehicles made is sure to turn heads even a half-century later.