New York - Art of the Automobile | Lot 121
1955 Ferrari 250 Europa GT Coupé by Carrozzeria Pinin Farina
$2,420,000 USD | Sold
| New York, New York
21 November 2013
- The finest example of Pinin Farina’s iconic 1950s Ferrari “look”
- A one-off custom design on the 250 Europa chassis
- Recipient of numerous concours awards
When the doors to the 1953 Paris Salon opened, it marked a new dawn for Ferrari, as this was the event where the company introduced its first road going model to bear the 250 series nomenclature. The 250 was Ferrari’s first true gran turismo, and it was dressed in the Pinin Farina design that would come to be known as the “Ferrari look,” forever intertwining the 250 with the passionate men of Maranello and Turin. Design cues created by the Ferrari-Pinin Farina partnership, like a long, low hood and oval radiator, continue to appear on Ferrari models of the present day. It was this design that has, for decades, embodied the spirit of cruising through the French Riviera, cocooning occupants and luggage in luxury while effortlessly eating up miles.
Offered here is the ultimate example of the “Ferrari look,” the sixth of eight custom-bodied 250 Europa GT chassis. Defined by its long nose, short rear deck, and gently sloping roof, design cues that are still evident in Ferraris of today, it is easily distinguishable as a one-off that has several unique features that visually set it apart from other Ferraris of the time. Its nose was elongated and lowered, the fender tips were pulled out, and it did not receive the typical Pinin Farina egg crate front grille. Dual fog lamps were placed in the new grille opening, with the center of the grille being adorned with a large Cavallino Rampante. Chassis 0407GT was also equipped with vertically mounted taillights, which were larger than other 250 Europa GTs, and dual rear windshield wipers, which was an interesting and rare option for any automobile of this era.
The interior also benefited from one-off orange interior trim that was literally tailored by the renowned Hermés, of Paris, and a specially fit rally clock that had a retractable clipboard for navigation maps!
This 250 Europa was the 26th of just 43 examples produced, according to information complied by noted Ferrari historian Marcel Massini and a Heritage Certificate issued by Ferrari. It was finished in a unique shade of grey, Grigio Metallizzato Max Meyer (LC 49), over Pelle Connolly leather (VM 3108) and was sold new by the factory on November 17th, 1955, to a Vincenzo Ferrario, a resident of Rome, Italy, and a frequent Ferrari customer. Shortly after, the car would eventually travel into the United States, where it was sold through Luigi Chinetti to a Hal Rudow, of Seattle, Washington. Interestingly enough, Rudow raced the car at an SCCA event at the Shelton CAP Airbase in March 1960, where he placed 1st in class in the car’s first and only competitive outing.
In 1964, it was purchased by Dr. Robert H. and Marilyn Cremer, of Los Angeles, California, and painted blue. The Cremers used the car occasionally until 1970, when it was put into storage in largely original condition. After bringing the car out of storage in 2004, chassis 0407GT passed into the ownership of a well-known private collection, which includes some of the finest Ferraris in the world. A complete restoration of the one-of-a-kind automobile to its as-delivered configuration was thereafter undertaken.
Work was completed in mid-2006, and the car made its premier at the 56th annual Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in 2006 and was also shown at the 26th Cavallino Classic in Palm Beach, Florida. At the Cavallino Classic, 0407GT was awarded with both a Platinum Award and the Excellence Cup, which was awarded based on the high quality of its restoration and the uniqueness of the automobile itself. Chassis 0407GT would continue to hold its ground on the show field, as it was entered in the Ferrari Grand Touring Class at the 31th annual Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance in 2008, and it took home First in Class.
As the first road-legal Ferrari to wear the now legendary 250 name, the Europa GT is a highly desirable automobile to many collectors. This example presents an even more unique proposition considering its custom coachwork. Any Ferrari with custom coachwork is truly an automotive treasure, and 0407GT represents the best of the Ferrari brand, as it has timeless styling, luxurious accoutrements, and, last but certainly not least, impressive performance. It truly has “the look.”