Autosport International Sale 2019

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1981 Ferrari 308 ‘Spyder’

Lot No.: 350

Registration: HIL 2277
Chassis Number: 31095
Engine Number: F106 A021 01538
Number of cylinders: 8
CC: 2926
Year of Manufacture: 1981
RHD/LHD: Right Hand Drive
Estimate (£): 40,000 - 50,000
(+buyer's premium of 15% including VAT @ 20%)
  • 1 of only 3 Ferrari 308 ‘Spyders' in existence - created from a genuine, right-hand drive, carburettor GTB 
  • Converted in 1989 by 'The Daytona Motor Company' well known for their Daytona Spyders and Aston Martin convertibles
  • Full details of this well-engineered conversion and the build spec are in the car's History File
  • Offered from 10 years in a small private collection, with just 2,000 miles covered, and only 66,000 miles in total
  • Spectacularly pretty. The 'Sypder' that Ferrari should have produced 

The 308 GTB, launched at the Paris Motor Show in 1975, was conceived as a direct replacement for the 246 Dino.  Designed by Leonardo Fioravanti, the man who styled some of the most iconic Ferraris including the Daytona, the new 308 had a rakish and attractive body which fused classic elements of Ferrari styling with a thoroughly modern design.  Perhaps one of the most recognisable designs ever penned for Ferrari, the 308 was an instant hit and it came to define the late-70s and early 80s sports cars.

For the first two years of production, the body of the 308 was produced in fibreglass, before the decision was reached to change to steel.  It shared a similar tube frame chassis to the original Dino and 308 GT4, with four-wheel, double wishbone, independent suspension and a transversely mounted 2.9-litre DOHC four-cam, 90-degree V8 engine fed by four Weber 40DCNF carburettors.  For the UK and Europe, the engine was dry-sumped, giving a power output of 255bhp which is enough to propel the 308 from 0-60 mph in 6.5 seconds and give a top speed of 159 mph.  In the early 1980s, the decision was taken to replace the carburettors with fuel injection, reducing the engine output to 214bhp.  The 308 was manufactured in both GTB and GTS (Spyder) forms from 1977 to 1985, before being replaced by the 328.

The car presented here is extremely rare, being one of only three Ferrari 308 'Spyders' in existence.  In 1989, it was professionally converted from a genuine, right-hand drive, late carburettor-model 308 GTB (highly desirable features in their own right) by 'The Daytona Motor Company', who were much-respected for their work on Ferrari Daytona Spyders and Aston Martin convertibles.  In the accompanying history file, there is a specification sheet from the company documenting the conversion, which was done to a very high standard, producing a car that is aesthetically hugely successful. Perhaps this is a model that Ferrari might have wished they had built? 

We believe that just three Spyders were constructed, making this a very rare example. The design was so successful that a scale model was subsequently built to record its sensational lines (see photos attached of the green model car).

Our Ferrari-enthusiast vendor enjoys a small collection of choice Italian cars and added this Spyder to it almost 10 years ago, during which time he has covered just 2,000 miles bringing the total indicated mileage to 66,000.  In common with the rest of the collection, HIL 2277 has been regularly serviced and received whatever attention it needed and is said to drive and perform as well as you'd expect.

Looking striking in its Silver Argento paintwork and Crema leather interior, the Spyder is always well received, with even hardened Ferrari aficionados expressing delight, and this special car is now ready to be enjoyed by a new owner.