1967 Ferrari 365 CaliforniaSOLD

RM Auction: Ferrari - Legenda e Passione - Sunday, May 20, 2007

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Estimate: 700,000€-850,000€

715,000 € Sold

Specifications: 320 bhp 4390 cc, single overhead camshaft V-12 engine, three Weber 40DFI dual choke downdraft carburetors, five-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension with coil springs, live axle rear suspension with coil springs, and four-wheel disc brakes. Wheelbase 2,650 mm (104.3").

Ferrari ’ s 365 California was, in so many ways, the culmination of Ferrari ’ s historically productive collaboration between sports car racing and customer road cars. Only 14 examples of the 365 California were built. They are almost invisible among the (relatively) boxcar loads of 275 GTBs and 365 GTB/4 Daytonas that Ferrari, along with Pininfarina and Scaglietti turned out about the same time.

Not until Ferrari built the eight cylinder 288 GTO in 1984, seventeen years in the future, would another low production, custom-built Ferrari cross Maranello ’ s threshold. Even today, forty years later, the 365 California is the high performance front-engined V-12 Ferrari from which today ’ s limited production specials take their inspiration – and a 550 Barchetta or 612 Scaglietti is commonplace compared with the fourteen 365 Californias built in 1966-67.

The 365 California was a hybrid made possible by the extraordinarily flexible combinations of its chassis, engines and drivetrains available at Ferrari. Pininfarina ’ s design imagination and low volume coachbuilding skills enabled Ferrari to create niche marvels that sold at breathtaking prices to a small cadre of well-heeled and discriminating clients. The 365 California established a standard of exclusivity that later Ferraris didn ’ t even try to meet. It was a low production, futuristically designed and styled visual masterpiece – and it had the chassis and drivetrain to back up its spaceship-like appearance. Ferrari never called it a “ Spyder ” or a “ GT ” . It is simply a “ 365 California ” - an elegantly simple name.

The 365 California took its inspiration from Ferrari ’ s 365 P and 365 P2/3 prototypes, the organically beautiful, rounded, svelte mid-engined prototype racing counterparts sold to client teams and concessionaires in lieu of the factory ’ s 330 P, P3 and P3/4 endurance racing coupes. The 365 P series was little different from the 330 P other than in their 4.4 liter engines which were carbureted and less highly tuned than the Lucas fuel injected 4-litre 330 P series. The 365 and 330 Ps ’ chassis and bodies were essentially identical, employing Pininfarina ’ s empirical understanding of aerodynamics in the ultimate expression of soft, rounded, organic shapes, resulting in the blossoming of cars that were as attractive as their performance.

Pininfarina ’ s coachwork took its cues from the mid-engined 330 P and 365 P prototypes, translating them successfully to the soft top, front-engine idiom of the 365 California. Some observers note the scooped-out rear fender brake ducts which contain the door handles as a precursor of the later Dinos, but fail to see their
presentation as a successor element of the 365 P and 330 P prototypes. The 365 California ’ s nose and tail translate almost directly from the 500 Superamerica, combining the classic Pininfarina oval air intake with egg crate grille and centered Cavallino Rampante, individual front bumpers flanking the air intake and seductively- shaped rear deck with cutoff Kamm tail.

The seventh of the 14 cars built, s/n 9849 was originally delivered via Luigi Chinetti ’ s agency in New York to William Bickel. Subsequently, it was owned by a series of enthusiasts who made various minor modifications according to their tastes and restoration or repair budgets.

It was restored for its immediate prior owner in 1993 by noted specialist Michael Regalia in its current rich black livery with lovely luggage tan leather interior. At the time, the earlier “ enhancements ” were fully reversed, and s/n 9843 was returned to its original configuration.

It has been shown several times including the 1993 Pebble Beach Concours d ’ Elegance and was featured in the August 1994 issue of Cavallino magazine (#82). Many other awards followed, including a Platinum award at the 2000 Cavallino Classic. Still in pristine, nearly concours condition, Ferrari 365 California s/n 9849 stands today as an exceptional example of one of the rarest coachbuilt Ferraris.

One of just 14 examples built, this 365 California - with its competition-derived 320bhp 365 4.4 litre engine and achingly lovely open Pininfarina coachwork - is the final, ultimate, bespoke Ferrari road car for the next two decades.

Reference Number 8766

as of 4/19/2007

Car 1967 Ferrari 365 California
VIN 9849 
Exterior / Interior Color      Black /      Tan 
Configuration Left Hand Drive (LHD) 
Options Exterior: Alloy rims
Interior: Leather interior, Wooden steering wheel 
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