As you’ll read in this month’s news, Bloomberg News recently confirmed that a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO has been sold via private transaction for an all-time record $35 million. I’ll let that sink in for just a moment…$35 million. Considering record auction sale prices have been floating in the stratospheric $15 million range, this is an absolute staggering number—and quite frankly a bit tough to fully comprehend, at least through the eyes of the automotive world. Has the classic car market really become so strong? Is a 250 GTO really the most desirable—and thus valuable—car on the planet?
If one accepts that Ferraris are among the most consistently desirable collector cars on the planet, then it is perhaps informative to look at how the GTO fits into the pantheon of Ferrari GTs. As outlined in this month’s Profile on the 250 GT Pininfarina Cabriolet, the 1960s 250 GTs all share a lot of core features and “DNA”—3-liter V-12 engines; ladder frame, tubular steel chassis; Pinin Farina designed bodywork, etc. Yes, obviously, there are significant differences, but when you look at it from the standpoint of the hard machinery—the differences in core structure, drivetrain, etc.— it is interesting to note that a Series II Cabriolet sells for $700,000–$800,000, while the California Spyder sells for $4 million and the GTO for now $35 million. Just looking at specs and performance numbers is the Spyder really $3 million more of a Ferrari? Is the GTO really $34 million more a car?
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