A Ferrari Berlinetta Boxer (BB) is one of a series of cars produced by Ferrari in Italy between 1973 and 1984. They used a mid-mounted flat-12 engine, replacing the FR layout Daytona, and were succeeded in the Ferrari stable by the Testarossa. It was designed by Leonardo Fioravanti. The Boxer was the very first mid-engined road-car to bear the Ferrari name and the Cavallino Rampante (prancing horse) logo.
Production of the BB was a major step for Enzo Ferrari. He felt that a mid-engined road car would be too difficult for his buyers to handle, and it took many years for his engineers to convince him to adopt the layout. This attitude began to change as the marque lost its racing dominance in the late 1950s to mid-engined competitors. The mid-engined 6- and 8-cylinder Dino racing cars were the result, and Ferrari later allowed for the production Dino road cars to use the layout as well. The BB was the first mid-engined 12-cylinder road car to be launched by Ferrari.
The first “Boxer” was the 365 GT4 BB shown at the 1971 Turin Motor Show. Designed to rival the Lamborghini Miura and the newly developed Lamborghini Countach, it was finally released for sale in 1973 at the Paris Motor Show. 387 were built, of which 88 were right-hand drive (of which 58 for the UK market), making it the rarest of all Berlinetta Boxers. The Pininfarina-designed body followed the P6 show car with popup headlights. Though it shared its numerical designation with the Daytona, the Boxer was radically different. It was a mid-engined car like the Dino, and the now flat-12 engine was mounted longitudinally rather than transversely (as it was mounted in the Dino; the Daytona was a conventional front-engine, longitudinal design). The engine produced 380 hp, slightly more than the Daytona.
The engine shared its internal dimensions with the V12 from the Daytona, but was spread out to 180° as on Ferrari’s 1970 Formula One car and was mounted above a five-speed manual transmission. One major difference in this engine was its use of timing belts rather than chains. Although referred to as a Boxer, the 180° V12 was not a true boxer engine, but rather a flat engine.
AC, Clarion Radio / Cassette, Electric windows, Rear luggage belts, Driver & Passenger 12v / Ashtrays, Original complete tool kit
It is over 40 years since the world first laid eyes on the 365; a huge departure for Ferrari as it’s first mid engine Supercar. Two tier paintwork, blistered arches and the unmistakable wedge profile represent a pinnacle for Pininfarina in period.
The compact nature of the design draws attention to the raked front end with an utterly gorgeous pop up headlamp / indicator and front grille arrangement, whilst a minimal rear over-hang houses an ultramodern debut of lamps set in mesh.
Magnificent in Blu Chiaro the car has photographic records of conclusive cosmetic restoration 20 years ago and furthermore has just arrived with us after a considerable refresh.
Fit and finish of this Boxer has stood the test of time and aged remarkably well thanks to a combination of fastidious ownership and careful upkeep.
The typical Italian leather smell and patina maintains a strong and lasting presence with dash top and leather door cards retaining a smooth and soft texture. The seats maintain good structure and support having been treated and maintained by ex Connolly craftsmen, whilst the headlining is taught with no holes or marks.
The magnificent period Veglia dials are unmistakable, the switch gear clean and tidy and the dogleg open gate pride of place.
Originality is key here with even the factory stereo still present.
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
Fed by a quartet of Weber carburettors the 4.4 flat or ‘Boxer’ here is based on the 312b GP car unit. Opening up the huge rear clam shell reveals an engine bay that is absolutely a work of art, one will spend as much time admiring it as you would the exterior. Sound on start up evokes all kinds of wonderful Italian history – the controls are heavy when cold, but as the car goes through it’s warm up routine this Ferrari demands revs to deliver on its supercar promise with layers of sound, before and after the exhaust note; in this case amplified by a 512 system.
Engine and Drivetrain have received regular attention from marque specialists to ensure optimum performance. A full engine rebuild with Nick Cartwright also saw the installation of a stronger, more robust 512 gearbox casing whilst more recently ex Maranello mech Vinnie Mezzullo carried out a whole host of works inclusive of new exhaust valves.
WHEELS, TYRES & BRAKES
Arguably one of the finest OEM wheel designs the elegant 5 spoke rims are attached via a ‘waffle’ plate and heavy duty chrome spinners; all of which present with a gleaming chrome finish. The re-manufactured wheels benefit from the 9 inch option at the rear; a win-win from a dynamic / aesthetic outlook. Wearing correct Michelin XWX the tyres display plenty of tread.
Brakes are in good order; easy to modulate and up to the performance demands.
The original wheels are also supplied.
This incredible BB was ordered new in March of 1975 by none other than Colonel Ronnie Hoare; the Chairman of Maranello Concessionaires UK.
The original order form confirms the Blue Met Dino with Beige VM 3234 trim, whilst a copy of the Sales Invoice from Modena confirms the supply of the vehicle with five wheels and tyres, tool kit, AC and Radio Autovex Melody. A recent dating letter from Tony Willis of the Maranello Archive also confirms the cars delivery, first owner and specification. It is interesting to note only 58 cars were built for the UK market of which it is thought 12 were built to this specification.
All major works are accounted for from 1982 to the present day; summary sheets, invoicing, pictures of restorative work and dialogue between respective owners and dealers involved at each and every stage.
Records have been kept for every change of ownership and MOT whilst notably the complete tool case, spare keys, original handbook and original wheels are also included in the sale.
To conclude this is provenance at it’s very best – ready for the next custodian to not only cherish but create their own chapter in a unique story of love and care over the last 40 years.
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