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1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder - Over 10,000 classic, collector and current cars and trucks at RemarkableCars.com

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder
AUCTION RESULTS: Car was Not Sold at a high bid of $1,975,000

240bhp, 2,953 cc overhead camshaft alloy block and head V12 engine, four-speed manual gearbox, independent front suspension via A-arms, coil springs and telescopic shocks, and rear suspension via live axle, semi-elliptical springs and hydraulic shocks, four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes. Wheelbase: 102.4"

The Ferrari offered here, 1307 GT, is the twenty-third of the total fifty long wheelbase California Spyders and is unique among them for several desirable and distinctive features, including the unusual Superamerica-style front fender vents and an insert air intake on the hood. Delivered on March 27, 1959 to Prince Alvise Hercolani of Modena, its certificate of origin was issued by Ferrari on April 3, 1959.

Hercolani retained 1307 GT for barely six months, selling it to the racing driver and car dealer Wolfgang Seidel in October 1959. In fact, Seidel drove the car to the V Grand Prix de Bruxelles in Belgium, as pictured in Jean-Paul Delsaux's book Les Grand Prix de Bruxelles. Seidel in turn sold the car in 1961 to the car's third owner, Rolf Helm of Germany before it was acquired by the fourth owner, William Morgan of Phoenix, Arizona. Morgan, who at the time lived in Wiesbaden, drove 1307 GT to Marseille, then put it on a boat to Corsica, where he spent a two-week vacation with his wife. From there, the car boarded a boat for Genova before Morgan drove it to Modena.

Mr. Morgan would own the car for several more years. It was serviced at the factory in September 1963 and shipped to Pleasant Hills, California in 1965, as Morgan had since relocated back to the United States. 1307 GT was finally sold in September 22, 1966 to Mr. Edwin K. Niles, an attorney from California, who in turn sold it to Ron Semler of Studio City the following June.

Jong Ling owned it briefly in 1968 before selling it to Jim Swartout, who at the time was apparently only 29 years old. 1307 GT remained in Swartout's ownership for the next 30 years, before it was sold in February 1999 to Jonas Liden of Sweden, who commissioned a full restoration at Autosport, Bachelli & Villa, in Bastiglia, Italy. After being shown at the Ferrari Owners Club UK National Concours in 2001, it was sold to Jean Guikas of Marseille before eventually being acquired in 2003 by the current owner.

After participating in the Texas 1000 and New England 1000, the car was more recently stripped down to bare metal and refinished in a very attractive deep blue, complemented by its original silver BMW 507-type hardtop a truly spectacular combination. It is believed that the hardtop was modified and adapted to this car during Wolfgang Seidel's ownership. In addition to being shown at Meadow Brook in 2005, the car was also displayed at the 58th Annual Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance in the special California Spyder category. As presented, it remains in excellent condition throughout and of course retains its original type 128 D engine.

1307 GT is unique in several important respects. Most apparent is the switch box placed over the driveshaft tunnel just behind the shift lever. It contains the ignition switch and other controls which normally would be mounted on and below the dashboard and instrument panel, giving taller drivers more leg and knee room. As mentioned, 1307 GT also has distinctive Superamerica-style front fender vents formed from bright-finished aluminum. Fitted from new with the desirable and more reliable twin Marelli distributors, its three Weber carburetors breathe through factory-fitted velocity stacks and are contained within a cold air box, both highly desirable performance options fitted to only a few California Spyders.

As a long-wheelbase example, the trim, low lines of its topless coachwork are elegantly balanced by the placement of its wheels and tires. The overall effect is long, low, sleek and decidedly sporting. The California Spyder is as close as Ferrari came to building a sports car since the early Barchettas and only it and the later 275 GTB/4 NART Spyders have the elemental high speed open air attitude that sets these cars apart from their more common cabriolet counterparts. 1307 GT is distinctive among even these rare and highly prized automobiles, the ideal mount for a variety of tours and events or even, in the tradition of the late Bob Grossman, a competitive entry in the many historic racing and Ferrari club events where its participation would be welcomed.

RM Auctions
Automobiles of Amelia Island
March 14, 2009
Website: www.rmauctions.com
Not Sold at a high bid of $1,975,000
Lot #253

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder Additional Pictures

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder

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1959 Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spyder - Over 10,000 classic, collector and current cars and trucks at RemarkableCars.com