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1971 Ferrari 365 'Daytona' Berlinetta Competizione
• Ferrari’s final front-engine V-12 racing berlinetta
• Professionally converted to competizione specifications
• Current HTP papers; eligible for all FIA-sanctioned events
The 365 GTB/4 Daytona was famously the last of Ferrari’s long line of vintage front-engine V-12 grand touring cars, but despite the Daytona name, it was conceived as a road-going GT only, not a dual-purpose berlinetta in the tradition of the Ferrari’s great road/racers of the 1950s.
However Ferrari’s US importer, Luigi Chinetti, founder of the North American Racing Team, saw great potential for a competition version and ordered an all-alloy bodied Daytona direct from Scaglietti. It was entered in the 1969 Le Mans 24 Hours and Chinetti subsequently developed two more competizione versions, by which time the factory finally began to take interest in the Daytona’s racing potential.
By 1971 Ferrari’s production run of standard Daytonas had also reached 500; sufficient to trigger FIA homologation in the International Group 4 Special Grand Touring Car racing category. So manufacture of Competizione versions for customer use then began at the factory’s Assistenza Clienti department by expanding on Chinetti’s development of the car, which most significantly included the aluminium body, a roll cage, and wider rear tyres. Further developments included the addition of stabilizing vertical fins to the front wings, side exhaust outlets, a front spoiler, and a cold air box for the six-Weber carburettor intake. After one of these cars finished 4th at the 1971 Tour de France, and following the FIA’s acceptance of the Daytona in 1972 for Group IV competition, more serious upgrades were undertaken by the factory, leading to the 5th overall finish at the 1972 24 Hours of Le Mans and class wins at Le Mans in 1972 and 1973.
Five Daytonas, now retrospectively known as Series 1 cars, featured alloy bodies, plastic side windows, and blueprinted engines. Ferrari built a second series of five race cars with rather more extensive modifications. Now homologated in Group 4 these cars retained the steel body of the road cars but were still lightened. Engines were fitted with high lift cams and polished cylinder heads raising power to a claimed 402bhp (up from 352bhp in the road car). These cars also gained 9" front and 11" rear rims with large wheel arch extensions to cover them. The body modifications were completed by a front spoiler and air control ridges on the front wings. Ferrari concluded the run of Competizione Daytonas with five Series 3 cars. Externally almost identical to the Series 2 cars, the Series 3 now produced 450bhp from its V12 while stiffer anti roll bars were employed to improve handling.
With only 15 cars built by the factory, privateers continued converting a small number of standard Daytona road cars to competizione specifications, with one such entrant finishing 2nd overall at the 1979 24 Hours of Le Mans, over a decade after the Daytona was first launched. Beyond this officially recognized group of privateer competizione models, an additional number of 365 GTB/4 coupés have been successfully modified in more recent decades, with one even winning the 1993 Tour de France.
Originally completed as a standard factory road car on chassis no 13383, according to Ferrari records this Daytona coupé was then delivered new to the Italian market in 1971. Later sold to a Japanese collector, it was then brought back to England 2004 where it was decided to convert the car to the proper Series 1 Competition Group 4 specification. The car was completely stripped and the bare chassis was then stiffened and fitted with an FIA roll cage, before a new all aluminium body was constructed & fitted by the renowned Steve MacFarlane in 1.2mm sheet as per original. He incorporated the distinctive flared arches to accommodate the correct wider-rim magnesium front and rear wheels and tyres. The headlight configuration was changed to competition standard and sliding plexiglass side windows, Plexiglas rear screen, and a competition outside fuel filler added, feeding the FIA fuel cell in the boot.
The engine remained in standard trim as per the Series 1 but was fitted with Roelofs competition exhaust manifolds and the carburettors fitted with competition inlet trumpets and cold air intake above the radiator. It was dyno tested by Tim Adams Racing Engines and showed 379bhp against the factory claimed 352bhp. The resulting power to weight ratio is almost the same as the 450bhp steel Series 3 cars but it remains eminently tractable for the road as it features standard camshafts. In short it's ideal for road or track.
The current owner purchased the car and shipped it to Portugal where it was completed and race-prepared by Lorenzini Autosports of Lisbon and granted FIA HTP.
It was track tested at Estoril before being stored away with less than 3 hours use, finally coming back to the UK this year where it has been carefully checked over and is ready to be enthusiastically campaigned by its new owner.