G,T and O are three letters that adorn the worlds most desirable and arguably most valuable Ferrari. Second generation GTO's were born during the early 1980's when many leading motor manufacturers thought FISA's Group B regulations would evolve into the definitive platform for showcasing their most technologically advanced machinery. In order to qualify for Group B, FISA stipulated that 200 identical road cars had to be produced and sold to the public for homologation to be granted. However, Group B was destined to become a stillborn series and much to the disappointment of race fans the world over, Ferrari's 288 and the Porsche 959 never took to the track in anger. Nevertheless, like Porsche, Ferrari decided to go ahead with a limited production run for their super high performance Group B challengers.
The 288 was the first mid-engined Ferrari street car to be fitted with a longitudinally mounted engine, this having been an all-alloy Tipo F114B 90° V8 with a capacity of 2855cc producing a phenomenal 400bhp being developed at 7000rpm thanks to twin IHI turbochargers at 0.8 bar while Behr intercoolers cooled the charge air. As a result zero to sixty MPH was just 4.8 seconds and a top speed of 189mph was possible. These astounding figures meant Ferrari's 288 GTO arrived as the fastest production car in the world on it's 1984 launch. As a nod to its predecessor, three vertical lourves reminiscent of the Bizzarrini-designed 250 GTO were carved into the rear wings while that flip up rear spoiler flared the tail quite magnificently.
GTO's were only available in Rosso Corsa and left hand drive. Meanwhile, the interior featured a suede covered anti-glare dash, Veglia instruments, a three-spoked leather rimmed Momo steering wheel and seats of similar design to the Daytona. Restrained and stylish but never overly luxurious, additional comforts could be specified by way of a luxury package that included air-conditioning, electric windows and a stereo cassette player. Full leather trim could also be selected (to replace the standard leather with orange cloth inserts) along with rear fog lights. Unveiled at the Geneva Salon in March 1984 after a lengthy development period that had seen the worlds motoring press speculating avidly as to exactly what was beneath Ferrari's heavily disguised prototype, the GTO was an overnight sensation. Floods of collectors were gagging to - at the very least - place a deposit for this the newest, most desirable car in the world. Ferrari had originally planned to produce just the mandatory 200 units for homologation, however, demand was so strong that 272 examples were eventually completed by the time production was discontinued in early 1986.
This example, "426 GTO", offered for sale by DK Engineering is one of the original 20 U.K delivered cars. Purchased originally by the Patrick Collection, the car was collected from Enzo Ferrari personally by the manager of the Birmingham based motor museum and driven back to England with the editor of CAR magazine who wrote a long article on the experience which featured pictures of the handover between Enzo and the car's first owner; these photos remain within the car's extensive history file. In addition the car has also been owned by the television presenter, Noel Edmonds. Since its exciting delivery in 1985 the car has covered just 14,000 kms. The interior benefits from the optional extras of full leather, air conditioning and electric windows. 288 GTO's have seen a steady rise in value over the last 20 years and are set to continue in the same manner as its predecessors such as the SWB or the original GTO.
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