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1964 Ferrari 250 GT/L 'Lusso' Berlinetta by Scaglietti

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1964 Ferrari 250 GT/L 'Lusso' Berlinetta by Scaglietti
Sold for $1,980,000 Including Commission
RM Auction, Monterey, CA. 2014
Chassis no. 5233 GT
Engine no. 5233 GT
240 bhp, 2,953 cc SOHC V-12 engine with triple Weber carburetors, four-speed manual gearbox, independent front suspension with unequal length A-arms and coil springs, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, parallel trailing arms, and Watt Bar, and four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes. Wheelbase: 94.48 in.
•An incredible “barn find” Lusso
•The first time offered for public sale
•Original ownership for nearly 50 years
•Original engine, gearbox, and axles
The Ferrari 250 GT/L, or the “Lusso” as it has become known over time, is widely celebrated as one of the most beautifully proportioned Ferraris ever designed by Pininfarina. Following the Lusso’s premiere at the Paris Motor Show in October 1962, it was widely acclaimed as yet another triumph for both its designers at Pininfarina and coachbuilders at Scaglietti. The Lusso would be the last Ferrari to bear the legendary 250 name, and many thought that Pininfarina had saved their best design for the celebrated 250 chassis for last.
Sitting on the shorter wheelbase chassis of the Ferrari 250 model range, power was delivered through the same 2,953-cubic centimeter short block V-12 that was designed by Gioacchino Colombo. As it was the last car in the 250 line, the Lusso would also be the last V-12 Ferrari road car to feature this engine, as displacement would increase to 275 cubic centimeters per cylinder for the next generation of Ferrari road cars. Additionally, the Lusso offered significant chassis upgrades, thanks mostly to lessons learned by the Scuderia in racing the 250 SWB and 250 GTO. These improvements principally consisted of the use of concentric springs around the telescopic shock absorbers and a Watts linkage to laterally stabilize the rear axle.
The design of the front end was clearly reminiscent of the 250 GT SWB, which is arguably the greatest dual-purpose race and road car ever created. The design elegantly swept back to the rear and culminated in a Kamm tail with a subtle rear spoiler, which was similar to that on the 250 GTO and the forthcoming 275 GTB. The Lusso is instantly recognizable as a member of the 250 family of Ferraris, and its design language makes it clear that this is a Ferrari for grand touring, as it appears to be visually less muscular yet more elegant than the SWB and GTO. However, three Lussos saw competitive use in the hands of their owners and proved to be successful, testifying to the sporting nature of the engine and chassis.
“Lusso” translated into English means luxury, and from one look into the cabin, there is no doubt that luxury is the perfect word to describe the ambiance. Its driver and passenger were lavished with the finest Italian materials in terms of leather, chrome trim, and a Nardi wood-rimmed steering wheel, which was a trademark Ferrari item. Arguably, the most eye-catching part of the interior was the rear luggage shelf, which was quilted in fine Italian leather and designed to support designer luggage that was just as chic as the Lusso itself. The dashboard configuration, thought to be inspired from a previous special-bodied 250 SWB, was also different from previous production Ferrari models, as it featured a large-diameter tachometer and speedometer in the center of the dashboard, which was angled toward the driver for easier readability.
Additionally, that luxurious interior ambiance was heightened by the airy “greenhouse” design created for the cabin. Glass surrounds the driver on all sides, and it is only punctuated by thin rear pillars that help house the panoramic rear window. This created a sweeping curve that merged delicately into a tiny rear deck. This design feature was distinct to the Lusso and offered almost 360-degree visibility for the driver, making the car not only stylish but also easier to maneuver through traffic for the driver.
In the hands of the motoring press, the car was well-acclaimed, even by Ferrari’s standards. Virtually all journalists who were granted the opportunity to test a Lusso showered the car with praise. Car and Driver declared, “Its proportions approach perfection,” Automobile Revue called it “the most beautiful car in the world,” and Ferrari Magazine called it “one of the all-time classics.” Even five years later, Road & Track proclaimed it as “Ferrari’s most beautiful car,” which is a compliment that cannot be tossed around lightly.
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