‘At the top – at the absolute top – in the automotive enthusiasts’ hierarchy of the cars of the world, there is only one. Ferrari. Is there really any question?’ Thirty-plus years after Car & Driver magazine voiced that rhetorical enquiry the answer, of course, remains the same. And the car that prompted that eulogy – The Ferrari 330GTC.
Intended to fill a gap in Ferrari’s line-up between the four-seat 330GT 2+2 and the racer-on-the-road 275GTB, the two- seat 330GTC debuted at the Geneva Motor Show in March 1966 and was essentially a closed version of the 275GTS. Pininfarina’s understated coachwork combined elements of the latter at the rear with touches of the 500 Superfast at the front. Few would disagree with Car & Driver’s opinion that the result was most agreeable. ‘The GTC is a tasteful blend of the mean-and-low look of Ferrari competition GT cars, with the elegance of super-luxury street Ferraris of the past. Detail work, finish, panel fit, every aspect is superlative.’
Beneath the 330GTC’s bonnet resided the 4-litre, 300bhp version of Ferrari’s familiar, two-cam, 60-degree V12, as used in the 330GT 2+2. The short (94.5” wheelbase) chassis followed Ferrari’s established practice of tying together sturdy oval- section main tubes in a steel spaceframe, while the suspension was independent all round by wishbones and coil springs. First introduced on a road-going Ferrari (the 275GTB) in 1964, the rear suspension incorporated the five-speed gearbox in a transaxle, an arrangement that created a better-balanced car and one that gave its driver, “the wonderful sense of know- ing just exactly what’s going on between one’s posterior and the pavé.”
Much development work had concentrated on the reduction of noise levels in the cabin, which was luxuriously equipped in the best Gran Turismo manner: leather seats, electric windows and heated rear screen were standard; radio, air con- ditioning and Borrani wire wheels the options. With a top speed in excess of 150mph, excellent ride comfort and sure- footed handling, Ferrari could justifiably claim the 330GTC to be the finest of high-speed conveyances for two people and their luggage.
This example of the 330 GTC was manufactured and completed off the production line in April 1968 and sold to its first owner, a Signor Benedetti, resident in Rome, Italy, during summer that year. It was registered in Rome in January 1969 under the licence plate serial ‘Roma D 68263’. In 1973 it was sold to its second owners, the Fratelli Fontana SpA com- pany of the Piazza Bruno Buozzi in Terni. On July 11, 1973, it was re-registered ‘TR 99410’, and its original plates have survived in the documentation file accompanying the car today.
On March 16, 1976, the car was inherited from Signor Gualtieri by his widow, Signora Luciana Lausi, his son Gianni and daughter Elisabetta, all of Terni. Later that month they sold this GTC to Signora Marisa La Gatta also of Terni, from whom it would be acquired later in that decade by Fabrizio Violati’s Bellancauto SpA company, domiciled at the Villa della Conciliazione, Rome.
The car subsequently became one of the highlight exhibits within the world renowned Collezione Maranello Rosso ex- hibitions halls in the Republic of San Marino. Purchased by the current vendor directly from the collection in 2014 this wonderful matching numbers example has since features in his, highly regarded UK collection.
For the true Ferrari connoisseur; and offered with such substantial and unparalleled history, this is a sports car that deserves to be preserved by its next owner with the unprecedented care that encapsulates its remarkable past. Resplen- dent in its silver coachwork, a 60’s Ferrari icon at its very best.