The F40 production line closed in 1992 and Ferrari self-imposed an exodus from the hypercar scene for three years until the F50 arrived, returning the prancing horse to the pinnacle of ultra-high performance motoring. Launched during March, 1995, at the Geneva Salon, the F50 was only ever built as a limited edition model, with just 349 (individually numbered cars) being manufactured by the time production ceased in 1997, all of which were left-hand drive when they left the factory.
Whereas its predecessors had ultimately been derived from Group B sportscar rules, the F50 was created without a set of regulations to influence its final form. Contemporary F1 concepts and technology heavily influenced the design process, and at its heart was a normally aspirated V12 engine derived from 1991's beautiful 642 F1 car. Something else that further differentiated the F50 from the 288 and F40 (and subsequently any later Ferrari Hypercar) was its dual configuration, the bodywork featured a removable roof panel that meant owners could convert their car from a Berlinetta to Roadster. Never before had a 200mph Spyder been openly available direct from a manufacturer, the F50 setting a trend that has since continued with the likes of Pagani's Zonda, the Porsche Carrera GT and Lamborghini's recent V12 models.
The F50 was officially only available in five colours, Rosso Corsa, Rosso Barchetta, Giallo Fly, Nero and Argento. However, some cars were finished in special order shades and although there were no options as such, customers could decide whether or not they wanted black-finish headlight surrounds. The cockpit was equipped with heavily bolstered composite seats trimmed in Connolly leather, body-colour coded centres having been a no-cost upgrade. Fully adjustable pedals and seats allowed practically everyone to tailor a perfect driving position, F1 thinking having been clearly evident from the combined digital/analogue instrument binnacle and acres of bare carbon fibre.
This extraordinary F50 was manufactured in 1996 and delivered new to its first private owner in March 1997 via Cornes & Co. Motors Ltd. It was supplied in Rosso Corsa over a Pelle Nera Hide with Rosso Flannel seat centres. Remarkably it remained with its first owner until 2008 before being sold with circa 8,700 kms. Despite the low mileage it was serviced at appropriate intervals to ensure it remained in fighting fit condition.
In 2014 it was subsequently sold and exported to Italy before later receiving a most comprehensive service including a replacement fuel tank in preparation for Classiche certification via the main dealer Malucelli S.r.l. The sought after "Red Book" was awarded in March 2015 by which time the car had covered just 14,493 kms. It has since remained in storage with minimal use since.
Today this exceptional example is presented for sale having covered less than 14,500 kms from new. As part of its preparation for sale DK Engineering are completing a comprehensive major service. Presented with Classiche certification, its book pack, launch brochure, spare key, tools & tyre pump, 2 pieces of factory luggage and the roof flight case with both the original soft roof and roll over bars contained within it.
What truly separates this car from the crowd is the incredibly prominent "weave" that is visible on every panel reflecting its originality and pureness. This car is one of the finest DK Engineering have seen in recent years paying testament to the meticulous level of care it has received the entirety of its life.