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Like many of the world’s greatest sports cars, the road-going Ferrari Dino was created to facilitate motor racing. The new-for-1967 Formula 2 rules required an engine of no more than six cylinders based on a production unit installed in at least 500 road cars. To get the engine quickly homologated to race, it was installed in both the Fiat Dino and Ferrari 206 Dino. While the front-engine Fiat topped the marque’s model range, the Dino did the opposite for Ferrari, representing a move to a completely new higher-volume segment.

To offset the growing costs of both Sports Car and Formula 1 racing in the 1960s, Ferrari needed to markedly increase road car production. Priced around $14,000 by 1972, the Dino cost appreciably more than a Porsche 911, which opped out around $11,000, but much less than the $20,000 365 GTB/4 Daytona. The Dino’s lower price would sell more cars and generate more revenue, but its specifications drew attention at any price. One of its most exciting characteristics was the placement of the engine amidships. The 206 Dino debuted at the 1967 Torino Motor Show, just 18 months after the Lamborghini Miura set the motoring world alight with its mid-engine layout. This was proper race car technology at the time, and the remainder of the Dino’s specification was no less sophisticated: independent double-wishbone suspension and ventilated disc brakes all around, rack and pinion steering, five-speed transaxle, and, of course, the engine. The 65º V-6 used dual overhead camshafts, and in its initial 2.0-liter form, it used aluminum construction throughout. It made 90 hp per liter, an impressive specific output for any carbureted road-going engine with two valves per cylinder. These technical features, coupled with the stunning Pininfarina aluminum bodywork, made the car a sensation.

The Dino’s aluminum intensive construction, both in its engine and bodywork, made production expensive, so more conventional materials were substituted in 1969. The car’s name changed to 246 to reflect a displacement bump to 2.4 liters, which yielded a welcome 21% torque increase, that arrived 1,000 rpm sooner at 5,500 rpm. Power peaked 400 rpm sooner, resulting in a more flexible car that was better suited to the important US market, where the car debuted for 1972.

This particular Dino 246, chassis 08272, is an exceptionally original example which has covered less than 3,200 miles from new. A US-specification GTS model with removable roof panel, it was originally collected at the Ferrari factory in fall 1974 by a Miami-based enthusiast, John H. McGeary. He kept it briefly before Luigi Chinetti Motors sold it to long-term owner Howard O’Flynn, who retained the car until 2011. Mr. O’Flynn, a New York banker, was a fixture in the North American Racing Team (NART) landscape, backing Chinetti’s racing efforts and even owning the 365 GT4 BB that NART raced at Le Mans in 1978.

In 1979, Mr. O’Flynn carefully placed the car in storage in Texas, together with a 900-mile Maserati Bora and an 8,500-mile Ferrari Daytona. The three cars would remain there until March 2011, when they were discovered, dusty but remarkably intact and undisturbed. Later that year, the Dino was purchased by a Texas-based collector who had the car sympathetically recommissioned, retaining it until February 2013, when it was sold to the consignor.

During his ownership, the consignor has had more than $100,000 of primarily mechanical maintenance and recommissioning performed in addition to a Ferrari Classiche certification. Today, the car is believed by the consignor to retain its original paint, chrome, and interior, all of which are in extraordinary condition, exuding a natural patina due to age. Its original tools, jack, and books are beautifully preserved. Also present is a file of documentation from the car’s acquisition by Mr. O’Flynn, including the Luigi Chinetti Motors purchase invoice dated January 5, 1975.

With this extraordinary provenance, low mileage, and thoughtfully executed conservation, this 246 GTS is among the finest unrestored Dinos in existence. A time capsule, reference-grade example, its lack of concours history leaves the new owner ample opportunity to share this outstanding example with appreciative judges and spectators alike in the future.

Gooding & Company
1517 20th Street
Santa Monica  90404  California
United States
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