1998 Ferrari 550 Maranello
NART Blue with Tan Leather
Introduced as the flagship of the Ferrari line in 1996, the Maranello replaced a long line of mid-engined cars that began with the Berlinetta Boxer and was continued by the Testarossa. Meant to recapture the glory days of Ferrari`s legendary front-engined sports cars (most notably the 275GTB and 365GTB/4 Daytona), the Maranello is an indisputably beautiful car. The Pininfarina styling is masculine and muscular without being overstated or macho and the proportions are spot-on. Motivated by a 485hp iteration of Ferrari`s V-12 that transmits power through a 6-speed manual transaxle, the car is both fast and balanced.
First sold by Ferrari of San Francisco, this car originally belonged to the inventor of the micropipette (as used in DNA analysis and polymerase chain reactions), who kept it for about nine years. Its original options include dark blue leather upper dashboard and steering wheel, red brake calipers, and fire extinguisher complete with leather-trimmed holder and straps. This three-owner 10,700-mile car has been fanatically maintained by all previous owners, all of whom had purchased this Maranello at Fantasy Junction in previous years. On file are records for the 5,000 mile service performed at Ferrari of San Francisco in September of 1999, its initial cam-belt “major” serviced at 5,212 in June of 2001 also by Ferrari of San Francisco, a second major cam belt service in 2007 by Miller Motorcars at just 6,400 miles. In addition to performing a full belt service and installing new tires over updated factory wheels, Miller Motorcars also noted that this car is one of the finest examples they have seen, a claim with which we agree. This work they performed included the replacement of the fuel and oil filters, changes of all fluids, timing adjustment and new timing belt, resealing of the cam covers and intake manifold, and the replacement of all four wheels as part of the factory recall program. Most recently in May of 2013 at 10,276 miles, SF Motorsports performed yet another $10,000 service to include new cam belts, fluid and filter changes, an air conditioning system service. Other recent mechanical work includes the fitment of a replacement radiator, and refinishing the interior trim piece which tend to develop sticky surfaces. To date, just 500 miles have been covered since its most recent major cam belt service. Thus, the car is mechanically sorted and has no needs whatsoever.
In addition to being mechanically excellent, this car is also cosmetically beautiful. The NART blue paintwork is stunning, original, and largely free of wear, save for a few small marks on the front end and in the splash areas from 10,000 miles of normal road use. The remainder of the paint is extremely lustrous and undamaged, while the glass, lights, and other trim are excellent as well. The new wheels are in unmarked condition as well.
The interior is also in wonderful condition, with almost no signs to indicate that this car is anything but brand new, save for some minor shrinkage on the forward facing side of the dash. Extremely close scrutiny reveals virtually no wear on the driver’s seat bolster, while the remaining leather (which covers just about every surface, including the console, dashboard, pillars, door panels, visors, and headliner) is free from signs of aging or wear. The carpets are excellent as well, as is all trim. Even the easily chipped door releases are unmarked.
The trunk and engine compartment are both in as-new condition and are extremely clean. Inside of the trunk is the original factory 6-CD changer, original compressor, tool set, and manual pack in leather holder, and car cover. The underside is reflective of the mileage and is mostly covered, in the interest of aerodynamics.
This is an extraordinarily appealing example of this attractive model. Its low mileage, fully serviced status, irreproachable cosmetic condition, and gorgeous color combination make this car very appealing. It is a no-stories, no-excuses car that is ready to be enjoyed and admired, and has been proactively cared for by its previous custodians.
A timeless configuration, with its large displacement front engine V12, mated to the gated 6-speed transmission, it is no wonder that the 550 Maranello has emerged as a modern classic. On the right side of the generational shift, these eminently usable but also collectible Ferraris are quickly finding their way into the hands of tomorrows market makers.