1969 Ferrari 365
Year of manufacture1969
Debuted in 1968, the 365 GTB/4 succeeded the 275 GTB/4 as Ferrari’s top-of-the-line, two-seat gran turismo. Unofficially known as the Daytona – in honor of Ferrari’s podium sweep at the 24-hour race in 1967 – it stands as the last front-engine V-12 Berlinetta designed before Fiat’s takeover of Ferrari road car production.
While utilizing the same general layout, wheelbase, independent suspension, and rear-mounted transaxle of its predecessor, the 365 GTB/4 differed dramatically in its bold styling by Pininfarina’s Leonardo Fioravanti. A 4.4-liter version of the six-carb, four-cam, dry-sump V-12 engine produced a staggering 352 bhp at 7,500 rpm.
Capable of reaching 0–100 mph in 12.8 seconds, with a top speed in excess of 170 mph, the Daytona was the fastest production automobile of its day. Period reviews were effusive: Car and Driver declared, “It isn’t fast – it’s blinding.” Le Mans-winning driver Paul Frère, who reached 176 mph on the Autostrada during his Autocar test, described it as “a Grand Touring car par excellence.”
This Daytona, chassis 12699, is among the earliest examples built, bearing Scaglietti body no. 38 and engine internal no. B202. Completed on July 2, 1969, finished in elegant Blu Ferrari (Ferrari Blue, code 20-A-185) over beige leather, this 365 GTB/4 was originally a “plexinose” example built for the Italian market.
In February 1970, 12699 was delivered to Luciano Ravasio & Sons, the official dealer in Verona, Italy, and sold to local resident Luigi Ravizza. According to Italian registration records, the Daytona was stolen in June 1972, recovered in 1976, and returned to its rightful owner, Gianluigi Cernuschi of Milan. The car remained in Italy through the late 1970s, passing through a succession of owners.
Imported to the US by Max Lagomarsino around 1980, the Ferrari was modified for American use, which involved fitting pop-up headlights, a dash-mounted VIN plate, and side marker lights. Presumably, the body was refinished in its current black livery at this time. Stephen P. Dean acquired the Daytona in 1982, drove it regularly for approximately 15 years, and then partially disassembled the car while carrying out various mechanical projects. It has remained in static storage since; at the time of cataloguing, the odometer displayed 45,303 km. Included with the sale is a history report produced by Marcel Massini, copies of Italian registration records, a tool roll, chassis abstract, sales brochure, correspondence, and accessories and spares collected by Mr. Dean throughout his ownership.
An early production European model, with an attractive original color scheme, one owner for nearly four decades, and its original matching-numbers engine per factory records, this “plexinose” Daytona checks all the right boxes and would look sensational in its original splendor. For the collector in search of a rewarding Ferrari project, this car’s appearance at auction represents a most compelling opportunity.