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.
To say that the 1960 Ferrari 250 GT LWB Alloy California Spider Competizione is rare would be quite the understatement, only twelve of these beauties were produced. The overall weight was lightened by using light gauge aluminum in place of the usual steel hard body casing, allowing for faster trip times. The Spider is a sleek and sophisticated convertible that is sure to please any auto enthusiast.
In addition to the lighter framing, other features that make the Spider a car to dream about include racing camshafts with a higher lift and velocity stacked 40DCL/3 Weber carburetors. The 128F engine was frequently found on the California Spider, and boasted an impressive 7300 rpm with 262 hp.
A few of the Spiders had external Tipo 168 spark plugs. There were many performance enhancements squeezed in to reach maximum potential of this hot vehicle. One model produced sported the 168B engine and pushed out 280 hp in 7000 rpm. This was in part due to bigger valves and a raised compression head.
The 1960 Spider featured a double wishbone front suspension with coil springs, and all wheel Dunlop disc brakes. When this marvel of machinery was defined, all accounting was taken into producing a car built for speed. Nothing was forfeited in design or performance technique, and the long wheel base became a classic that lived up to and exceeded Ferrari standards. Anyone would be fortunate to feel the pulse of the engine and the thrill of the drive offered by this masterpiece.
When one thinks of Ferrari, images conjure in the mind of speed, power, elegance, wealth, and rarity. The 1963 Ferrari 250 GT Lusso Berlinetta is no exception. Perhaps most known for being owned by the definition of coolness, Mr. Steve McQueen. Ferrari has been a trusted name since 1929 and gained its reputation through the production of quality racing motor vehicles. After 18 years in production Ferrari took its design technology to street legal performance cars in 1947.
The Ferrari 250 GT Lusso Berlinetta was produced from 1963 to 1964 and 350 models were completed. It was put through its paces racing against the Targa, and though finishing 14th out of 64 competitors, there was certainly nothing to be disappointed in. The 250 Lusso sports a 3.0 liter engine with rear wheel drive. Featuring a V-12 engine with 240 hp, this dream machine goes from 0 – 60 in 8 seconds and can reach a top speed of 155 mph.
At its introductory price this sweet ride sold for just under $13,000 and today fetches a price well above $500,000. For some the investment speculation alone is enough, but for owners of the Ferrari 250 Lusso Berlinetta it is all about the love of the vehicle. It was certainly not a car for kids or the faint at heart. The Lusso Berlinetta combined the best of a racing vehicle and a luxury car to come up with an unforgettable classic.
Many consider the Ferrari 250 GT Lusso Berlinetta to be the best of the Ferrari GT models produced. Enzo Ferrari was a visionary with racing cars, whose intention was to utilize the revenues from street versions to support his racing endeavors. With timing, circumstance, and correct partnering with Alfa Romeo and Pininfarina the Ferrari street machine has become the love of many car buffs.
1963 Ferrari 250 GT Lusso Berlinetta Photo Gallery: