Founded by Enzo Ferrari in 1939 as Auto Avio Costruzioni, Ferrari is considered the world’s most powerful brand by the asset-valuation consultancy Brand Finance. Throughout its long and storied history, the maker has been noted for its continued participation in racing. In Formula One, it’s the most successful racing team of all time. But you don’t need to have any interest in racing or even cars to know that the Ferrari brand is synonymous with luxury, speed and wealth. Below is a list of what are widely regarded as best of a winning breed. Read on — then check out Seven 2017 Sports Cars to Buy Now!
This one’s a two-seat, front-engined Gran Turismo produced by Ferrari between 1964 and 1968. Equipped with a Colombo V12, it’s not only notable for its good looks but also for the fact that it was the first Ferrari to be equipped with a transaxle (should that mean anything to you). In August 2014, one was bought for $26.4 million. Bellisima!
The name Daytona was apparently bestowed by the media and refers to the Ferrari’s 1-2-3 finish in the February 1967 24 Hours of Daytona with a 330 P3/4, a 330 P4 and a 412 P. The Daytona had a fully independent suspension, rear transaxle for better weight distribution, and a roaring V12 engine. Ogle today’s speediest racers in our roundup of The 20 Most Powerful Cars on the Road!
250 GT Lusso
“Lusso” means luxury in Italian, and this little beauty was a more luxurious version of the 250 GT series. Although it was a true beast in terms of performance, it was also constructed with style and comfort in mind. How cool is this car? Well, Steve McQueen had one, so as cool as it gets.
This is the automobile that launched Ferrari’s supercar reputation. Produced between 1973 and 1984, this baby used a mid-mounted flat-12 engine, replacing the front-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout of the Daytona. Designed by Leonardo Fioravanti, the Boxer was the very first mid-engined road-car to bear the Ferrari name and Cavallino Rampante, the iconic logo of a prancing black horse on a yellow background. Check out tomorrow’s most amazing supercars and concepts in our 25 Favorite Cars at the New York Auto Show!
The Ferrari P series were prototype cars produced in the 1960s and early ’70s. As you might imagine, they didn’t make a lot of prototypes; in fact, there’s only one bona fide 330 P4 in existence. It’s got sexy lines but serious power, and is one of the last Ferrari prototypes that still resembles a sports car.
250 Testa Rossa
Named for its red valve covers (testa rossa means “red head”), the Testa Rossa was a racer designed for sports-car competition. These iconic autos dominated their competitors in the 1950s and early ’60s — variations won 10 World Sports Car Championship races, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1958, 1960, and 1961; the Sebring 12 Hours in 1958, 1959 and 1961; and the Buenos Aires 1000Km in 1958 and 1960. These results led to World Sports Car Championship titles in 1958, 1960 and 1961. In August of 2011, one sold at auction for nearly $16.4 million. Marvel at more world-record wheels in our rundown of The 17 Most Expensive Cars Sold at Auction!
250 GT SWB California Spider
This was Ferrari’s most successful early model, built between 1953 and 1964. A fiberglass-bodied replica of a 1961 250 GT Spyder California, based on an MG, was featured in the 1986 film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Remember how distraught Cameron was when his father’s pride and joy sailed through the garage and into the woods? Perhaps he foresaw that in 2014 someone would pay $15.1 million for one of these beauties.
Produced from 1984 through 1987, the 288 GTO was developed to compete in Group B racing, which was canceled following the deaths of Henri Toivonen and Sergio Cresto (in Group B rallying). This car is an exotic homologation of the Ferrari 308 GTB. (In case you didn’t know, homologation is the approval process through which a vehicle, a racetrack or a standardized part is required to go for certification to race in a given league or series. GT (Gran Turismo) O is for Omologato (homologated in Italian). It was the first street-legal car to achieve 300 km/h (186 mph). Check out more all-time greats: The 10 Coolest Porsches of All Time!
The F40 was the last Ferrari approved by Enzo himself and was designed to celebrate the company’s 40th birthday. The F40 became the basis of one of the wildest street cars available at the time. It weighed only 1,100 kg (its low weight achieved through extensive use of aluminum and composites) and produced around 470hp. Spicy.
Only the 250 GTO was designed to compete in GT racing, where it was pitted against rivals including the Shelby Cobra, Jaguar E-Type and Aston Martin DP214. Just thirty-nine 250 GTOs were manufactured between 1962 and 1964. In 2004, Sports Car International placed the 250 GTO eighth on a list of top sports cars of the 1960s and nominated it the top sports car of all time. As Ferris Bueller said of another Ferrari on this list, if you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up. Help bankroll your future purchase with The 25 Best Wealth-Building Tips Ever!