Ferrari’s most successful Le Mans racer is up for sale

Maranello didn’t realise the chassis had won the greatest endurance race on earth twice until recently

ferrari 275 p

FERRARI’S forgotten Le Mans hero is being sold privately by auction house RM Sotheby.

The 275 P is one of Maranello’s earliest mid-engine sports cars, with the prototype fitted with a 3.3-litre V12 engine between its axles.

ferrari 275 p inside

This particular example, chassis #0816, is one of Ferrari’s greatest racing cars, winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans twice (1963 and 1964), but the Italian company didn’t realise until recently.

According to the auction house, chassis #0816 wasn’t meant to race in the ’63 race.

The original plan was for 275 P #0814 to be entered, but that chassis badly damaged at the Nurburgring just a month before the French race.

engine

Instead of filling out the paperwork for the entry again, Ferrari simply sent #0816 in its place, finishing first outright

The very same chassis repeated the feat a year later, but Ferrari didn’t pick up the clerical error that hid the achievement for many decades.

The victories in ’63 and ’64 are also the final outright 24 Hours of Le Mans victories for the Scuderia.

ferrari 275 p seats

Only four other individual chassis have won the 24 Hours of Le Mans twice; a Bentley Speed Six in ’29 and ’30, the legendary Mk1 Ford GT40 in ’68 and ’69, a Porsche 956 in ’84 and ’85, and the TWR-WSC 95 in ’96 and ’97.

Belonging to the family of collector Pierre Bardinon, 275 P #0816 has lived a reclusive life for the past five decades, rarely being shown in public.

ferrari 275 p dash

RM Sotheby’s says the car is being sold unrestored, with matching number engine, gearbox, and body.

The auction house doesn’t issue a price estimate for the private sale, but it’s likely to be deep into the eight figures.

 

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