Seven decades of Ferrari demands a very special anniversary celebration
Ferrari. The name swirls round your mouth, rolls off the tongue. The word conjures up more imagery than just about any other manufacturer. Just say the word and people will smile, or nod or get jiggy. You don’t get quite the same reaction if you say ‘Ford’ or ‘SsangYong’.
And now Ferrari is celebrating 70 years, commemorating the time in 1947 when Enzo Ferrari started his own company. It was of course in Maranello – again, say the name and people grin hugely. Try that with ‘Dagenham’ or even ‘Seoul’.
So it was only fitting that the celebrations for seven decades of Ferrari should finally finish in Maranello. Being a Ferrari event, the celebrations got underway with an auction run by Sotherby’s. It’s fair to say the prices were eye-catching. A 250 GT LWB California Spider dated 1959 went for £6,440,000 while a 1969 GT/B Daytona Berlinetta Alloy which had spent four decades gathering dust and rust in a Japanese hayloft, went for £1,472,000.
It would be equally fair to say that Sotherby’s must have made a significant sum of money out of the event. We know they did, because they even sold one car and waived the fee. That was a LaFerrari Aperta. You may recall Ferrari was going to make 209 examples. This was the 210th.
Finished in a unique Rosso Fucco livery with a Bianco Italia racing stripe, the car was donated by Ferrari and sold by Sotherby’s for no costs, with the proceeds all going to the Save the Children charity. Guess how much it sold for. £7,636,000.
The next day there was a Concours d’Elegance that naturally was covered by Italian television. Ferraris came in from around the world, and displayed themselves around the Fiorano test track. Some were red.
There was everything there, totally rare cars and fan cars, even a replica of the 1947 125 S that kicked it all off, as well a version in white of the new Portofino which hasn’t even been officially unveiled yet.
With the impassioned Tifosi watching, taking photos and videos and doing everything short of actual worship, the cars moved around in a fantastical swirl of colour and energy, like the Ferrari flag being waved.
It’s not long now till the centenary, but to help you wait, have a look at the photos and try not to get jiggy.