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1968 Maserati Ghibli 4.7 Spider Prototype (photo: Darin Schnabel) Darin Schnabel ©2015 Courtesy of RM Sothebys
1968 Maserati Ghibli 4.7 Spider Prototype (photo: Darin Schnabel)

The 2015 RM Sotheby’s Monterey auction will be held August 14-15 at the Portola Hotel and Monterey Conference Center in California. Approximately 150 collector cars will cross the block during RM’s annual Monterey Classic Car Week sale. In addition to the previously announced Ferrari 275S / 340 America Barchetta, RM Sotheby’s will also offer a Maserati Ghibli 4.7 Spider Prototype and the original U.S.-specification Ferrari Daytona, among others.

The 1968 Maserati Ghibli 4.7 Spider Prototype, chassis AM115/S 1001, is well-documented as the first Ghibli Spider ever produced, and the first example ever shown to the public, as confirmed by Maserati Classiche. Finished in Giallo with a Testa di moro interior – the same color combination it wears today – and featuring styling by Ghia, 1001 was shown at the 1968 Turin and 1969 Geneva Auto Shows. As the prototype design, it displays several unique differences from the production Spider that followed; among the most noticeable, a slightly longer boot lid, and slight recesses in the door panels where the handles are mounted.

Following the conclusion of Maserati’s testing and development, 1001 was sold to its first private owner in 1969, who allegedly drove the car frequently around Italy before the Spider exchanged hands in 1975 and was imported into the United States. In 1986, with 41,100 miles on the clock, 1001 went into storage, where it remained for nearly thirty years before being purchased by its current custodian. Upon acquiring the car, the vendor commissioned a full service by a marque specialist, who discovered the car had been properly stored, and as a result, it required very little effort to return the Spider to life.

Chassis no. 1001’s first public outing in nearly three decades was at the 2014 Concours of America at St. John’s in Michigan, where it received the Debut Award for most important Concours debut. Later that year, the Ghibli Spider attended the Hilton Head Island Concours where it received a Palmetto Award in the Maserati class, which celebrated the 100th anniversary of the marque. Offered fresh to the market, 1001 is expected to fetch $1,200,000 – $1,800,000 when it crosses the RM Monterey podium in August.

“A piece of Maserati History, 1001 is undoubtedly the most significant Ghibli in existence,” said Ian Kelleher, Managing Director, RM Sotheby’s West Coast Division. “Not only does it boast incredible historical value as the prototype used by the factory to develop the production Ghibli Spider, but it also offers incredible looks, fantastic performance – thanks to its potent 4.7-liter V-8 – and wonderful driving dynamics. We’re thrilled to have been entrusted with the car’s sale by its gentleman owner. For the astute Maserati collector, its offering represents a singular opportunity to acquire a very significant automobile – the first Ghibli Spider.”

RM Sotheby’s 2015 Monterey sale will also lift the gavel on a 1970 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Berlinetta. Chassis 13361 is the first example of the American-specification Daytona, which, most notably, featured the Perspex-covered headlamps as used in Europe. Completed at the Maranello factory in April 1970, 13361 was ordered new by William Harrah’s Modern Classic Motors in Reno, Nevada, then a principal importer of Ferraris in the western United States. In addition to being the prototype of the U.S.-version Daytona, this 365 GTB/4 also possesses a unique ownership provenance, as it is believed to have been retained by Mr. Harrah as a personal car. Its provenance is further bolstered by the fact that it was utilized in Road & Track’s initial test-drive review of the Daytona model, which ran in the magazine’s October 1970 issue. With a well-documented chain of ownership, 13361 is offered for auction following a recent restoration that saw the car return to its original Plexiglas headlight specification (Est. $900,000 – $1,200,000).

1970 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Berlinetta in period, visibly showing its Nevada license plate and Plexiglas headlights (photo: Road & Track)

“From an aesthetic perspective, the Ferrari Daytona was an instant styling icon, combining the sharp edges of 1970s along with the curves of the 1960s. Under its hood, its massive V-12 engine rendered it the most powerful road going Ferrari of its time; as an exhilarating high-speed, high-performance car, it embodied everything about Ferrari that a driving enthusiast cherishes,” said Shelby Myers, Car Specialist, RM Sotheby’s. “Chassis 13361 is perhaps the most compelling of its breed. Not only is it the original U.S.-specification Daytona prototype, but it is freshly restored, matching numbers, and boasts a truly outstanding provenance that includes ownership by William Harrah, along with the prestige of being a Road & Track cover car.”

Additional early entries for RM Sotheby’s 2015 Monterey sale include:

  • 1976 Lamborghini Countach LP 400 ‘Periscopio’, chassis no. 1120172, in Blu Tahiti over a Tobacco colored interior and two Canadian owners from new (Est. $1,500,000 – $2,000,000);
  • 2013 Aston Martin DB9 Centennial Spyder Concept, one-off built by Zagato to celebrate Aston Martin’s 100th anniversary (Est. $380,000 – $450,000);
  • 1969 Lamborghini 400 GT Islero S, chassis 6531, the 54th of 100 models built and fully restored by marque specialists (Est. $350,000 – $450,000); and,
  • 1973 Nissan Skyline H/T 2000GT-R ‘Kenmeri’, chassis no. KPGC110-000127; powered by the race-derived S20, twin-cam, 24-valve straight-six, this example is the rarest production Skyline GT-R with 197 examples built and shows less than 23,000 original kilometers (Est. $125,000 – $175,000).

RM Sotheby’s flagship Monterey auction returns to the Portola Hotel and Monterey Conference Center, August 14-15, 2015. In 2014 the RM event set a new benchmark for a collector car auction, generating $143.4 million to become the highest grossing collector car auction of all time. For further information or to view a frequently updated list of entries, visit or call +1 519 352 4575.

[Source: RM Sotheby’s]