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1950 Ferrari 166 MM Touring Barchetta Patrick Ernzen ©2017 Courtesy of RM Sotheby's
1950 Ferrari 166 MM Touring Barchetta (photo: Patrick Ernzen)

A 1950 Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta will be among the headline offerings at the 2017 RM Sotheby’s Amelia Island auction, to be staged March 10-11 at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Amelia Island, Florida.

The matching-numbers 166 MM, chassis 0058 M, is the 27th of 32 examples, and the 23rd of 25 Touring barchettas.It was delivered to its first owner of record in June 1950, before being gifted to future Scuderia Ferrari racing driver, Eugenio Castelotti, who would race the car at many of the leading events throughout Italy, including the Mille Miglia in 1951. Chassis 0058 M returned to the Mille Miglia in 1953 before being exported to the United States where it continued its racing pursuits, including at the Pebble Beach Road Races.

In addition to its competition history, 0058 M boasts an ownership record that includes more than two decades with Ferrari Club of America Chief Judge, Ed Gilbertson. During his custodianship, Gilbertson presented 0058 M no less than five times at the Pebble Beach Concours, where in 1979, it was awarded the Hans Tanner Trophy. It also garnered multiple Platinum awards at the Cavallino Classic, FCA National Meet and Concorso Italiano.

RM Sotheby’s reports the “extraordinarily original” Ferrari 166 MM Barchetta includes its original Touring body, V-12 engine, gearbox and differential, and comes to Amelia Island complete with Ferrari Classiche certification. The ‘little boat’ is estimated to sell for $8,000,000 – $10,000,000.

“The 166 MM is, unequivocally, one of the most important sports cars ever constructed; it is essentially the cornerstone on which Ferrari built their successful formula, or if you like, the padrino of all the short-block based competition cars that followed, from the 195 and 212 Exports to the 225 S, the 250 GT Tour de France and Testa Rossa. As such, its significance in the marque’s history cannot be overstated,” said Shelby Myers, Car Specialist, RM Sotheby’s.

“In the rarefied air that is Ferrari’s 166 MM, 0058 M is one of the best of the very best,” added Myers. “It possesses all of the critical attributes a collector wants in a Ferrari sports racer: rarity, period racing history in Italy and the U.S., a high level of originality, as well as a successful show career. A very special car and extremely eligible for the world’s top concours and driving events, we’re thrilled to bring it to market in Amelia Island.”

Beyond a stable of Ferraris, there will no doubt be additional focus on RM Sotheby’s presentation of ‘A Gentleman’s Collection: The Pride and Passion of Orin Smith’ — a group of 63 automobiles offered largely without reserve during an evening sale on Friday, 10 March. In addition to previously announced feature cars, catalog highlights include a 1936 Lancia Astura Cabriolet Series III ‘Tipo Bocca’ by Pinin Farina, the centerpiece of the Smith Collection, along with a 1958 Rolls-Royce Silver Cloud I Drophead Coupe ‘Honeymoon Express’ by Freestone and Webb.

With its aerodynamic profile, the Lancia Astura, chassis 33-5313, is the pinnacle of pre-war Lancias. Sporting unique coachwork by Mario Revelli di Beaumont for Pinin Farina, it is believed to be the first of three or fewer PF cabriolets built on the sporting, ‘Corto’ short-wheelbase chassis from a total six cabriolets including the long wheelbase 4-seater. It was on the Pinin Farina stand at the 1936 Milano Motor Show, where it was awarded the President’s Cup from the Registro Ancetre Club Italia. This was closely followed by a class award at the inaugural Concorso d’Eleganza San Remo in May 1937. Part of the Orin Smith Collection since 2011, in recent years the Astura has been restored to Concours standards that earned special awards at the Amelia Island Concours and the Concorso Villa d’Este. Most recently, it was exhibited at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles as part of their ‘Rolling Sculpture’ exhibit of streamlined design. A sister car to this Astura, in long-wheelbase form, was awarded Best of Show at the 2016 Pebble Beach Concours. The Lancia carries a pre-sale estimate of $2,000,000 – $2,600,000.

The ‘Honeymoon Express’ Rolls-Royce, chassis SGE270, is one of two built to the this design, and, with its sister car in long-term ownership, the only example available or likely to become so. The recipient of an award-winning restoration by marque specialists, it has enjoyed a known history with three, private long-term owners from new (Est. $1,300,000 – $1,800,000).

The complete Orin Smith Collection digital catalogue is available here.

Additional attractions for RM Sotheby’s two-day Amelia Island sale include:

  • 1971 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Berlinetta Competizione Conversion, chassis 14115, ordered to competition specification through Luigi Chinetti and intended to compete at the 1972 12 Hours of Sebring. The car unfortunately never got to take to the track in period, but is more than ready for competition today, having undergone a five-year restoration to its competition specification (Est. $1,250,000 – $1,500,000);
  • 1995 Ferrari F50, chassis 104220, originally delivered to the boxer, Mike Tyson, and showing 5,694 actual miles, Ferrari Classiche certified (Est. $2,200,000 – $2,400,000); and,
  • Pair of Lamborghinis from the collection of American comedian, Adam Carolla, including an unrestored 1965 350 GT, chassis 0232, showing less than 37,300 miles from new (Est. $600,000 – $750,000), and a 1969 Islero 400 GT, chassis 6267, which retains its original special-order pigskin interior (Est. $250,000 – $300,000).

For more information, call +1 519 352 4575 or visit for the complete digital catalog.

[Source: RM Sotheby’s]