While Enzo Ferrari’s focus was always on Grand Prix victories, he was never reluctant to apply the lessons learned in Grand Prix-or to spread out the high cost of GP car and engine development-to large displacement sports cars.
Sports cars also earned both starting and prize money for the factory, and there seemed to be a constant queue of sports racer customers-waving dollars, lira, francs, pounds and pesos-standing outside the factory gate.
The 375 Mille Miglia descended directly from the four-liter GP formula and the big engine that Aurelio Lampredi designed for it. It was natural to tune the engine down a little, wrap a two-seat body around it, and go collect some prize money. Typically bodied by Pininfarina, the 375 MM was both the factory team car and a favorite of well-heeled customers. One of them, Casimiro de Oliveira of Portugal, so frequently bruised his 375 MM’s Pininfarina body that it had to be returned to Ferrari after only a year, where it received a very early body by Scaglietti: 0366 AM. That car is the 375 MM shown here.
The 375 MM’s Lampredi engine is an all-alloy beauty. It breathes through a trio of beautiful four-choke Weber 40IF4/C downdraft carbs. In 375 MM form, it delivers 340 horsepower, with every component built for strength and reliability.
0366 AM was first delivered to de Oliveira at the 12 Hours of Casablanca, where the new owner was to drive with the World Champion, Alberto Ascari. Ascari qualified 0366 AM for the race, but de Oliveira crashed his new car in practice. Ascari must have been particularly annoyed when Giuseppe Farina and Piero Scotti won the race in another 375 MM. Oliveira later agreed to sell 0366 AM to Swedish Ferrari importer Tore Bjurstrom, for Vlademar Stener to drive. De Oliveira delivered Bjurstrom’s new 375 MM at the Skarpnack airfield-and promptly crashed it again.
0366 AM, the only Scaglietti-bodied 375 MM, is in concours condition, having completed its cosmetic restoration just two years ago by one of the best in the business. The car has been meticulously maintained in a collection known for a consistently high caliber of cars, and their constant readiness for any event-whether it is on the road or on the show field.