Wednesday, 17 November 2010

What's a missing 1/4 light between friends ? - 1957 Ferrari 250 GT Ellena

It's a great honour to share another couple of Steve Anaudins Dads photo's to day this time from Lime Rock in 1959.

During the mid to late 50's Ferrari like Maserati realised that a business model focused on the production of low volume racing cars was not sustainable and so both began producing larger volume road cars, we saw the Maserati 3500 GT yesterday, Ferrari's transition was a little more chaotic with the introduction of 250 GT which was introduced in 1954 and in at least 12 different body variations.

The car was built around the staggering 280 hp 2,953cc / 180 cui Colombo Tipo 125 V12, which weighed nearly half the weight of the contemporary Jaguar XK 6 engine with a similar power output.

Amazingly the clue to the identity of this 250 GT is in the absence of the 1/4 light window in the door ! In 1956 Pinin Farina designed a prototype coupe which he did not have the capacity to build so responsibility for production was handed over to an ex Farina and Ghia coachworks employee Mario Felice Boano who produced 64 coupes all with a lower roof line than original prototype.

Not long into production Boano was employed by FIAT and so he handed production responsibilities over to his son in law Ezio Ellena who produced a couple of cars identical to the low roof line Boano, before raising the roof line and doing away with the quarter light to tidy up an already exceptionally clean and smooth design. It is thought that Ellena produced around 50 250 GT's before production of the next 250 GT upgrade was taken in house by Ferrari in 1958.

Hope you have enjoyed popping by today, thanks again to Steve Arnaudin for sharing his Dad's photographs with us and thanks to Steve's Dad for taking them in the first place.

Looking forward to trawling through my archives for tomorrow's edition of 'Gettin a lil' psycho on tyres !' hope you'll join me, don't forget to come back now !