Year of manufacture1989
Number of seats2
1989 Ferrari 328GTS Targa Convertible Coupé
Coachwork by Pininfarina
Registration no. GO 1328
Chassis no. 82947
Engine no. 19563
The Ferrari 328 GTS offered here was delivered new to Nigel Mansell in 1989. One of Britain's best-loved Formula 1 heroes, Nigel Mansell excelled in a career that spanned 15 seasons and is ranked among the greatest racing drivers of all time. Mansell had signed for the Italian manufacturer's Formula 1 team at the end of the 1988 season, leaving Williams, so the 328 represented the ultimate 'welcome gift'. In a dream debut, he won for Ferrari in the season-opening Brazilian Grand Prix of 1989. A plaque in the centre glove compartment between the seats reads: '328 GTS 82974 - owned and driven by Nigel Mansell whilst driving for Ferrari in their 1989/90 season.'
Nicknamed 'Il Leone' by the adoring tifosi, Mansell would go on to score two more wins for Maranello before returning to Williams at the end of 1990. In 1992 he won the Formula 1 World Championship and followed that up by winning the CART Indy Car World Series in 1993, becoming the first and only driver to hold both titles simultaneously. With 31 wins, Mansell is Britain's second most successful Formula 1 driver after Lewis Hamilton.
Ferrari's line of highly successful V8-engined road cars had begun with the 308 GT4 of 1973. Originally badged as a Dino, the all-new 308 GT4 2+2 took over from the preceding Dino V6. The newcomer's wedge-shaped styling - by Bertone rather than the customary Pininfarina - was not universally well received, but the performance of the amidships-mounted double-overhead-camshaft 3.0-litre V8 certainly was, and a new two-seater car using a dry-sumped version of the same power unit debuted at the Paris Salon in 1975. Built on a shorter wheelbase, the stunningly beautiful 308 GTB marked a welcome return to Pininfarina styling.
Subsequently updated with four-valves per cylinder, the 308 was superseded by the mechanically similar but larger engined 328 GTB in 1985. By increasing both bore and stroke, the quattrovalvole engine's capacity was raised to 3,186cc which, together with a higher compression ratio, revised pistons and improved Marelli engine management system, lifted maximum power to 270bhp at 7,000rpm. Top speed was raised to within a whisker of 160mph with the sprint to 60mph covered in 5.5 seconds. On the outside the addition of Testarossa-style moulded bumpers, a deeper rear valance and an unobtrusive roof spoiler could not disguise its underlying beauty. 'If the sublime purity of the original shape has been corrupted, its striking appearance has not,' observed Motor magazine. 'In our book, this is still the most beautiful of all contemporary exotics - a gorgeous looking car.'
This right-hand drive 328 GTS Targa convertible was owned by Nigel Mansell, at that time resident in the Isle of Man, until 1991 when it was sold to the second owner, Mr D Saunders of Alton, Hampshire and registered in the UK. Mr Saunders kept the Ferrari until 2005 when it passed to Mr P Cromwell of Aston, Birmingham. Mr Cromwell was followed by Christopher Farley of Birmingham (2006-2007), Steve Bamber of Lytham St Annes (2007-2014) and then Chris Evans. The car comes with a good file of service history and expired MoT certificates verifying the recorded mileage of 15,518. It was last serviced in October 2013 at 15,189 miles by marque specialists Northern Supercars, including changing the cam belts, and comes with the relevant invoice.