Skip to main content

Ferrari 275 GTB

Ferrari 275 GTB 1960s Italian classic sports car

The Ferrari 275 GTB was not just beautiful to behold - it was technically innovative, too. For example, it brought suspension to the Ferrari table, in a way that had never been seen - or felt - before. The result was a car which looked like $1,000,000 ... and had handling capabilities to match. For once, the Ferrari engine - the alloy 60° V12 - was not the centre of attention. It was trumped by the transmission! For optimal weight distribution - and, with it, top traction - the motor and gearbox were separate. The two were linked on early models by a slender prop shaft - and later, by a stiffer torque tube. When double wishbone rear suspension was added to the mix, this Ferrari was uniquely positioned to make the most of the 280bhp from its single overhead-cam motor. An automotive marriage made in heaven, the 275 GTB was exquisitely styled by Pininfarina. Plus, it had 150mph on tap ... every last drop of which could be poured safely onto the tarmac!

Scaglietti built the GTB's body. They were but a stone's throw away from Ferrari's Modena HQ. Scaglietti's steel metalwork was then transferred to Pininfarina, to apply the finishing touches. The GTB's frame was multi-tubular - in familiar Ferrari fashion. There was a set of Borrani alloy wheels - complete with knock-on centre hubs. As sporty 2-seater coupés go, from the outside the GTB was about as good as a Berlinetta gets! The interior did not let the side down, either. Suitably well-equipped, its focal point was the deliciously-designed Nardi steering-wheel.

Launched in '64, there would be several versions of the GTB. '65's 'Series Two' model sported a longer nose, and a smaller air intake. And in '66, the quad-cam GTB/4 was fitted with six carbs and dry-sump lubrication. The wind-in-your-hair option - the GTS - was aimed squarely at fair-weather American buyers. All GTBs are rare - there were only 200 of them built. Especially scarce, however, are the 9 NART Spiders - and the 12 lightweight aluminium racing GTCs. A landmark Ferrari, if ever there was one, the GTB was the point at which the Modena marque transcended mere beauty - and started to deliver on every level. Of course, the perfect road car does not exist. The Ferrari 275 GTB, though, probably came as close as any!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

FN Four

In terms of breakthroughs in the history of motorcycling, there cannot be many to rival the first in-line four engine. Belgium was the birthplace of this landmark layout. FN was the much-to-be-thanked manufacturer.The FN Four first hit the highway in 1911. It produced 4bhp. That, from a 491 cc capacity. At the time, such figures described state-of-the-art technology. Top speed for the FN Four was 40mph. Not bad - for an 8-valve inlet-over-exhaust set-up. Oh, it was air-cooled.The FN Four was light - tipping the scales at 165lb dry. Not only the motor, but the chassis, too, was avant-garde. It featured an early form of telescopic forks. A new-fangled clutch - and 2-speed 'box - only added to the FN Four's slick box of tricks. Solid shaft-drive output the power. Who, then, designed this visionary vintage? You will not hear the name Paul Kelekom shouted from motorcycling's rooftops. But, you should - for it was he who fashioned the FN Four. In so doing, he ki…

Chrysler Airflow

The Chrysler Airflow was where Art met Science! The lines of its bodywork were drawn from aerodynamics - at a time when that discipline was a mere glint in a boffin's eye! Certainly, it was far from being routinely used in automotive design. Indeed, the Airflow was the first production car to feature the fledgling craft. A 'wind tunnel' was duly developed. Even today, such systems are considered arcane ... but, in the early '30s, they were tantamount to a black art! The engineering wizards overseeing the project were Carl Breer, Fred Zeder, and Owen Skelton. Breer was the catalyst ... he had been first to be smitten by the science of aerodynamics. Zeder and Skelton soon followed suit. And it did no harm at all when Orville Wright - father of aviation - was brought on board! More than 50 test cars were built. By means, then, of painstaking refinements, the Chrysler Airflow gradually took shape.But the Airflow was not just about aerodynamics. 'Weight lo…

NSU Ro80

The styling of the NSU Ro80 was ahead of its time. At first glance, masses of glass were straight out of science-fiction. Closer inspection revealed the gently rising line of its profile - giving it a low front, high back stance - which would influence automotive design for years to come. The 5-seater body was supremely aerodynamic for a saloon car - making cruising at speed a breeze. So flawless was it outwardly that it was hardly touched in ten years of production. Just the tail-lights were modified, on later versions.The Ro80's handling was equally impressive. FWD - and precision power-steering - kept it perfectly pointed. The long-travel strut suspension soaked up bumps. High-efficiency disc brakes were fitted all round. The 3-speed semi-automatic transmission swept through the gears with aplomb. Top speed was a sound 112mph.But, of course, nothing is perfect. The Ro80 was powered by a twin-rotor Wankel engine. Unfortunately - in a rush to get the car into showroom…