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Lot 325: Ferrari 400 GT Coupé

Collectors' Motor Cars and Automobilia, Bonhams (3 March 2012)

Launched at the 1976 Paris Salon, the 400GT had acquired a 4.8-litre version of Ferrari's four-cam V12 engine but otherwise differed from its 365GT/4 2+2 predecessor only in detail. The 400GT re-affirmed Ferrari's determination to compete with the world's finest luxury sports saloons and was intended to attract the type of mature yet discerning customer who previously might have opted for a Bentley or Mercedes-Benz. This latter requirement made the option of automatic transmission a necessity. The unit chosen - General Motors' three-speed Hydramatic - was widely regarded as the world's best, having been used by Cadillac and subsequently by Rolls-Royce and Jaguar among others. Ferrari's splendidly equipped 2+2 featured self-levelling independent rear suspension, power-assisted steering, electric windows and optional air conditioning. The 340bhp on tap was good enough for a top speed in the region of 150mph. Sadly, even after it received fuel injection, the 400GT - now the 400i GT - remained effectively a Europe-only model because of the expense involved in crash-testing two cars for US safety assessment. A total of only 502 cars had been made up to the 400i's introduction in 1979, of which a mere 164 were right-hand drive UK models. By the time production of the final 412 version ceased in 1989, Ferrari's finest 2+2 had been in production for a remarkable 17 years, though its exclusivity meant that there were seldom more than 200 sold in any one year. Previously registered 'VOV 765S', this particular Ferrari 400 GT had been dry stored for 16 years prior to its acquisition by the immediately preceding owner from a deceased's estate in 2008. That same year the car was re-commissioned by the then owner's bodyshop where works carried out included refurbishing the wheels, overhauling the brakes, fitting new Koni shock absorbers, replacing the exhaust, re-upholstering the seats and renewing the carpets. Finished in red with red/biscuit interior, the car is described by the private vendor as in generally excellent condition and offered with sundry invoices, MoT/tax to September 2012 and Swansea V5 registration document.

Lot Details
Auction Collectors' Motor Cars and Automobilia
Bonhams, Bonhams, Oxford
TypeCar
Lot Number325
Estimate£15000-£20000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price£14000
Hammer Price (inc premium)£16100
Year1978
Condition rating
Registration number2326 KO
Mileage-
Chassis number23429
Engine number23429
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors2