1974 Ferrari 365 Berlinetta Boxer

About this car

One of only 58 UK-supplied RHD cars

 

Displayed at the 1974 Earls Court Motor Show

 

Restored to concours condition

 

Ferrari Classiche certification

SH Reference #

22-0704001

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Description

Having been fully restored by a Ferrari specialist in Maranello – home of the legendary marque itself – this 365 GT4 BB is in concours-ready condition and boasts a fascinating history.


As shown on the original correspondence in the car’s extensive history file, chassis number 18145 was ordered by Ferrari’s British importer, Maranello Concessionaires, in June 1974. It was finished in Rosso Chiaro with Beige interior and was delivered in September of that year, ready to be displayed at the Earls Court Motor Show the following month.


The Ferrari was then sold to its first owner – the London Sports Car Centre in Edgware – in January 1975 for £14,255. Having been registered HLD 15N, it passed in short order to Essex-based James Porter and then John Millward, who took delivery in April 1975. Millward was a keen amateur racer and he’s pictured competing in the car at Silverstone in Mel Nichols’ 1979 book Ferrari Berlinetta Boxer – a copy of which is included in the file.


Millward briefly sold the BB in the late 1970s but soon regretted the decision and bought it back. He eventually sold it for good in 1980, when it passed to Leonard Potter and was re-registered 111 HLM. The following year, Potter sold it to Nigel Walker of Modena Engineering in East Horsley, and he commissioned Autokraft to convert the Ferrari into a ‘targa’ by having the roof panel removed and strengthening added to the chassis and sills.


The car remained in that form for more than 30 years, through an extensive mid-1980s restoration, and would be featured in books such as the sixth edition of Ferrari by Hans Tanner and Doug Nye, as well as Ferrari Supercars by Nathan Beehl. Through 2015 and 2016, the BB was extensively restored to original specification in Maranello – all of the work is carefully catalogued in the history file, with the invoices totalling €190,000. The car was then awarded Red Book certification by Ferrari Classiche.


Now being offered for sale by the Classic Motor Hub, this Ferrari 365 GT4 BB is presented in its original colour combination and is immaculate throughout. One of only 58 right-hand-drive cars delivered to the UK, it is supplied with its original instruction book and tool kit, was displayed at Salon Privé in 2021, and is surely one of the very best examples of Ferrari’s first mid-engined supercar.


MODEL HISTORY

Developed as a replacement for the front-engined Daytona, the Ferrari 365 GT4 BB was first shown at the 1971 Turin Motor Show before being put on sale two years later. It was the first mid-engined road car to carry the Ferrari name and – like the Scuderia’s contemporary Formula One cars and sports-prototypes – it featured a flat-12 powerplant.


The 4390cc unit used belts rather than chains to drive its overhead camshafts, and it was mounted longitudinally, with the five-speed gearbox positioned underneath. When Motoring News tested a BB in July 1974, it said that, at high revs, ‘the engine is really howling… a beautiful, hard, cammy noise that is unmistakeably Ferrari’.


The clean, angular Pininfarina styling laid down a template for mid-engined Ferraris that would last until well into the 1980s. Beneath it lay a blend of unitary construction around the cabin and a tubular structure elsewhere, and the bodywork was made of steel – apart from the doors and the nose and tail sections, which were aluminium.


Inside, air-conditioning was standard and road-testers complimented the comfort levels and general ease with which this latest two-seater supercar could be driven. It came at a price, though, with only a handful of ultra-exclusive cars from Mercedes and Rolls-Royce costing more than the 365 GT4 BB when it was launched.


With 360bhp, the BB had a top speed in the region of 180mph, and Motoring News recorded an unofficial 0-100mph sprint in 12 seconds while carrying a full load of fuel. There was a competition-spec version, too – the BB LM, which was raced by the likes of legendary Ferrari concessionaires NART and Ecurie Francorchamps. A Charles Pozzi-entered BB LM managed to finish fifth overall at Le Mans in 1981 with the all-French driver line-up of Claude Ballot-Léna and Jean-Claude Andruet.


Only 387 examples of the 365 GT4 BB were built before it morphed into the 512 BB in 1976. This new model featured an enlarged 4942cc engine but was still fitted with Weber carburettors. These were finally phased out on the 512i, which was introduced in 1981 and represented the final stage in the development of the Berlinetta Boxer before it was replaced by the Testarossa in 1984.

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