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Ferrari Daytona: buying guide and review (1968-1973)

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There isn't much more to say about the way the Ferrari Daytona looks that hasn’t already been eulogised elsewhere. The 365 GTB/4 (or GTS/4 for cabriolet versions) – to give it its formal name – is a motoring icon in the truest sense: stunningly beautiful, rare and with even a little motorsport pedigree. The Pininfarina-designed, Scaglietti-crafted Daytona is considered one of the greatest front-engined V12 GTs the marque has ever produced. 
At its release in 1968, the Daytona was the fastest road car in the world. The 4.4-litre engine offered up 350bhp, enough for a 174mph-plus top speed – by comparison, the Lamborghini Miura maxxed out at 171mph. It had the chassis to cope with the power, too: fully-independent suspension offered impressive body control, while the transaxle gearbox sending drive to the rear helped to balance the weight distribution.
All of these attributes made it an ideal car for competition use. Though it never competed with the full factory backing of Ferrari, 15 racing examples were produced to be run by privateer teams. The high top speed paid dividends, particularly at Le Mans where Daytonas scooped class victories in three consecutive years from 1972-74.
As an ownership prospect, the Daytona should be reasonably easy to live with. Fitting its Grand Tourer brief to the letter, interior accommodation and boot space are more than adequate. By modern standards, the lack of power steering makes low speed manoeuvres quite a chore, though at higher speeds it lightens up nicely. Likewise, it is a little noisy inside, but it’s hardly a bad noise to have to put up with…
Which one to buy?
Over the course of the five year production run, a total of 1406 Daytonas were built: 1269 Berlinettas, 122 Spyders and 15 race-prepped cars. Right hand drive examples of both the Berlinetta (158 in total) and Spyder (seven) were produced. US-spec versions are subtly different to those sold in the rest of the world, as they feature a lower compression ratio and an exhaust silencer.
While Ferrari produced far fewer Spyders than Berlinettas, many coupes have since been converted. None of these conversions were performed by the original coachbuilder, and as a result the quality of the work might vary from one example to another. 
Racing examples vary based on the year in which they were built. Built in three batches of five, all three featured body panels crafted from aluminium and fibreglass, while the glass windows were replaced with plexiglass. The first five, produced in 1970/71, featured a standard 350bhp engine, while each subsequent year added 50bhp to the total output, resulting in 450hp for the ‘73 batch.  
Performance and spec
Engine 4390cc V12
Power 350bhp @7500rpm
Torque 318lb ft @ 5500rpm
Top speed 173mph
0-60mph 5.4secs
Fuel consumption approx 14mpg 
Gearbox Five-speed manual
Dimensions and weight
Wheelbase 2400mm
Length 4425mm
Width 1769mm
Height 1245mm
Weight 1280kg
Common problems
• If you’re searching for a Spyder that was originally converted from a Berlinetta, pay extra attention to the quality of the conversion. 

• Very few examples have matching numbers and all of the original documentation provided. Those that do will be worth the most.

• The gearbox needs to be treated with extra care until it is warmed up. Make sure it shifts through the gears smoothly once everything is up to temperature.

• Regardless of temperature, the steering and the clutch will feel very heavy, so this shouldn’t be a worry (at least from a financial point of view).

• Most Daytonas will have been subject to at least one restoration throughout its life, so pay close attention to the paintwork and all the body panels. Unless you are planning to restore the car again, it pays to scrutinise the quality of the previous work.

• Engine work can be very expensive, so you should make sure that it is given a full health check by a specialist before you buy. 

• It can cost a surprising amount of money to return a Daytona to full factory specification, so finding a car with the correct interior, original seats, factory toolkit and handbook is worthwhile. Dashboards are generally hard wearing, but have been known to suffer if left out in the sun for many years. 
Model history
Oct 1968: Revealed at Paris Auto Salon
1969: 365 GTS/4 introduced
1970-71: First five lightweight racing versions produced for customers
1972: Second batch racing models produced. Power output raised to approximately 400bhp
1973: Final batch of racing variants sold. Power output raised to approximately 450bhp
1973: Production run ends. 1406 produced
Key clubs and websites
• www.ferrariownersclub.co.uk – An international club based in the UK for all things Ferrari
• www.superformance.co.uk – Ferrari parts specialists
• www.talacrest.com – Classic Ferrari specialist and dealer based in Berkshire
• www.clubscuderia.co.uk - International forum for Ferrari owners and enthusiasts
Summary and prices
With a total of only 122 produced (only seven of which were right-hand drive), Spyders command the highest values. The most immaculate genuine Spyders are advertised at over £2,000,000. In 2014, TV and radio presenter Chris Evans paid £2.27million for a Spyder – a record fee for a Daytona.
Auction values for the Berlinetta have seen a steady rise from 2010. In 2015, Bonhams and RM Auctions each sold a coupe in the US for £492,000 and £502,000 respectively, Cars held by UK dealers are priced a little higher, with both Berlinettas and Spyder conversions advertised at around the £750,000 mark.

Words: Alex Ingram
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Last updated: 15th Oct 2015
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Ferrari Daytona cars for sale

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Ferrari Daytona
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  • 365 GTB4


    1972 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona. Blue Chiaro Metallizato with Beige interior. A very special Daytona which has only had 3 previous owners. Originally delivered in May 1972 the car was specified in the Blue Chiaro with Beige interior, front mounted spot lights and electric aerial. In its long term ownership the car was changed to red and there are documented photos of it in the file. The current owner then decided it was time and right to restore the bodywork back to its original specification, this has been done to a level of perfection rarely seen even in this day and age. The car looks stunning in this colour combination but that is only part of the story...

    • Year: 1972
    • Mileage: 27876 mi
    For sale
    Bob Houghton
    01451 860 794
  • Ferrari Daytona


    1973 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 ‘Daytona’ Right Hand Drive: Correct Matching Numbers: Ferrari Classiche Certified One of only 158 UK Supplied Motorcars Only 36,670 miles from New: Concours Presentation It was at the Paris Auto Salon in 1968 that the new Ferrari 365 GTB/4 was first displayed. The successor to the 275 GTB/4, it was then the most expensive and fastest street Ferrari ever built. The prototype shown at the Paris Salon was designed and built by Pininfarina, and it is evident in the glorious lines. The ‘Daytona’ as it was to be known (in recognition of Ferrari’s one-two-three win at that 24-hour race the previous year), had aggressive, bold and yet handsome lines with the performance to match. When driving the Ferrari one gets the feeling that it is strong, powerful and bold; at 3600 plus pounds it was the heaviest to come from the Ferrari drawing boards at that period of time. Although weight did not seem to bother the cars superb handling, the excellent horsepower and torque gives the Daytona the aggressive performance to match its bold looks. As the last of the line of great front-engined V12 berlinettas, the Daytona holds a special appeal for Ferrari Tifosi; in many ways it is the most “macho” of the Ferrari’s and its popularity is reflected in the fact that the Daytona has become one of the most desirable Ferrari’s of all time! # 16817 was delivered new on the 14th November 1973 via Maranello Concessionaires Ltd and Three Ways Garage Ltd to Mr Godfrey Price of Wirral, Cheshire. Mr Price commissioned his Ferrari to be built in Celeste Metallizzato with Blue Hide (VM3015) Hide and Blue carpets as the car is presented today. Accompanying the car is an historical chassis file and equipment that includes: •Leather Handbook Pouch •Handbook & Sales / Service Centre booklets •Original Tool Roll •Maintenance Invoices from 1987 •Historical Tax Discs from 1987 •Ferrari Classiche “Red Book” Without doubt this is a unique opportunity to acquire one of Ferrari’s most highly sought after models. Presented in a concours condition with its totally correct matching numbers, presented in the exact original manufactured exterior and interior finishes, the issuance of Ferrari Classiche certification together with its extremely low recorded mileage of 36,670 confirmed in the cars highly documented historical chassis file makes this particular Ferrari 365GTB/4 perhaps the most collectable Right Hand Drive Berlinetta currently available for sale anywhere today. Post sales services will be completed by an official Ferrari Classiche Service Centre prior to handover. Our Daytona is now available for the closest inspection at our central London showrooms.

    • Year: 1973
    • Mileage: 36670 mi
    For sale
  • 365 GTB4 Daytona Plexiglass


    1970 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Plexiglass. Rosso Corsa with Beige leather interior. The rare early plexiglass Daytonas are extremely desirable and this UK right hand drive car has great provenance. It was first registered to Mr Spooner of Southampton in 1970 and was originally silver with black interior. Then in March 1971 it was taken back in and sold to a Mr Thompson of Wentworth. In the early eighties it was then looked after by Bob Houghton whilst at Rosso in Cirencester and had a full re-commission including engine build and colour change to the current Rosso Corsa along with new interior in beige leather. The car was then sold to a Mr Clowes in 1981 who owned it all the way up to 2008. During this time it was maintained by John Pogson with all of the bills in the history file. In 2008 it was presented for auction at Coys Ascot where it was acquired by the current owner and we were commissioned to go through the car and get it back up to a good useable condition. We have looked after it ever since and have organised the Classiche certification as well as general maintenance work. Fitted with the 9 inch rear wheels, restored dashboard and new tailpipes, it drives beautifully an

    • Year: 1970
    For sale
    Bob Houghton
    01451 860 794
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