One owner, 84,299 kilometres from new 1973 Ferrari 365GTB/4 'Daytona' Berlinetta Coachwork by Pininfarina Chassis no. 17607 Engine no. 2088
'It's a hard muscled thoroughbred, the Daytona - easily the most awesome and yet disciplined road-going Ferrari in that firm's brilliant quarter century of existence. The Daytona isn't fast it's blinding. It will eat up a quarter-mile of asphalt in 13.2 seconds at 110mph and scream out to 175mph - or it will slug through traffic at 1,500rpm with the Sunday manners of a FIAT. It is the perfect extension of its driver. You can cut and weave through shuffling traffic with the agility of a halfback, or lope down the freeway with the piece of mind that comes from knowing you can contend with anyone's incompetence. To say, after you've driven it, that the Daytona is desirable doesn't begin to sum up your feelings - you would sell your soul for it.' - Car & Driver, January 1970.
Every Ferrari is, to a greater or lesser extent, a 'landmark' car, but few of Maranello's road models have captured the imagination of Ferraristi like the 365GTB/4; the 'Daytona' name was unofficial, bestowed by the press in honour of Ferrari's crushing victory at that circuit's 24-Hour Race in 1967. Responding to the challenge from Lamborghini, Ferrari had introduced its first road-car V12 engine with four overhead camshafts on the preceding 275GTB/4 and this superior type of valve gear was retained for the Daytona. The latter's engine though, was considerably enlarged, displacing 4.4 as opposed to 3.3 litres, in part to compensate for the Daytona's increased weight but more importantly to guarantee Miura-beating performance; its 352bhp and 318lb/ft of torque ensuring that these targets were met. Dry-sump lubrication enabled the engine to be installed low in the multi-tubular chassis, which featured all-independent wishbone and coil-spring suspension first seen in the 275GTB, while a five-speed rear transaxle enabled 50/50 front/rear weight distribution to be achieved.
One of Pininfarina's countless masterpieces, the influential shark-nosed body style combined muscularity and elegance in equal measure. An unusual feature of early Daytonas was a full-width transparent Plexiglas panel covering the headlamps, replaced by electrically operated pop-up lights towards the end of 1970. At the time of its introduction in 1968 the Daytona was the most expensive production Ferrari ever and, with a top speed in excess of 170mph was also the world's fastest production car. Deliveries commenced in the second half of 1969 and the Daytona would be manufactured for just four years; not until the arrival of the 456GT in 1992 would Ferrari build anything like it again.
Today, some 40 years after the last Daytona left the factory at Maranello, most have passed through the hands of several owners. This car however, which has covered only 84,299 kilometres (approximately 52,300 miles) from new, is one of the very few that is still with its original owner. Completed to European specification on 12th December 1973, chassis number '17607' is a very late example, being the fifth from last produced. It was, and still is, finished in the unusual colour scheme of black (Nero) with red (Rosso) leather interior, playfully reversing the exterior/interior combination applied to so many Daytonas. Air conditioning was fitted at the factory.
The Daytona was delivered in Switzerland via the official Ferrari importer SAVAF (Société Anonyme pour la Vente des Automobiles Ferrari) and sold to the current vendor early in 1974. Around 1976 the owner decided that for once he wasn't going to send his Ferrari to the official importer Auto Becker in Düsseldorf but entrusted a major service to his local Mercedes garage which dealt with his company cars. This would turn out to be a fatal error as following a wrong adjustment in the timing chains the engine suffered severe damage and the car would subsequently receive a replacement unit. A few years later and obviously still in the same ownership, the gearbox too was replaced. In 2010 the car was sent to the Ferrari/Ferrari Classiche accredited firm of Eberlein Automobile GmbH in Kassel, Germany for extensive refurbishment, which is detailed in their 8-page invoice on file for 44,329. It has been used little since and remains in commensurately excellent condition. Offered with the aforementioned invoice, Massini Report, an article in the German Ferrari owner's magazine and German registration papers, '17607' represents a wonderful opportunity to acquire one of the fast-diminishing stock of one-owner Daytonas, little used since recommissioning by a factory-accredited specialist.