Subdued styling kept values among the lowest of V12 Ferraris; they were
entry-level cars priced about the same as a 250 GTE or a 250 PF coupe


At the 1956 Geneva Motor Show, Pinin Farina unveiled a prototype built on a 250 Europa GT chassis. The new body made the car look longer than the Europa, with a crisp beltline and only a small notch in front of the rear wing. The grille was lower and smaller, the windshield was more curved, and the trunk capacity was increased. It was known as the Boano.
The factory stated it was "a production car which benefited from the experience in racing." Even if not intended for racing, some customers won significant victories in them. Richie Ginther won the first U.S. East Coast GT race in a Boano coupe, and the cars also ran in the 1956 and 1957 Mille Miglias. Some Boanos were clothed in aluminum, like chassis #0443GT, which won the GT class in the 1956 Alpine Rally and took a first overall at the Acropolis Rally.
The GT Boano Coupe offered here is a production Boano coupe, finished in dark blue with silver roof, beige leather seats, and beige carpets. It has been mechanically restored at Bassano del Grappa, with cosmetics by the excellent Mario Galbiatti, ex-Carrozzeria Zagato.
This car's first owner was an Italian named Vittorio de Micheli, who purchased the car new in 1956. It was later offered for sale in the U.S. by Bill Rhodes in May 1993, before coming back to Italy in 2004 and then to its present owner.
The car is superb and fully eligible for most historic events, a very reasonably priced "ticket" to enter the Mille Miglia at the wheel of a Ferrari.

SCM Analysis


Vehicle:1956 Ferrari 250 GT Boano
Years Produced:1956-58
Number Produced:130
Original List Price:$10,500
SCM Valuation:$125,000-$200,000
Tune Up Cost:$2,000
Distributor Caps:$450
Chassis Number Location:on frame tube next to engine
Engine Number Location:right rear above motor mount
Club Info:Ferrari Club of America, P.O. Box 720597, Atlanta, GA 30358
Alternatives:1962-64 Ferrari 250 GT Lusso, 1955-57 Alfa Romeo 1900 Zagato (SSZ), 1953-55 Fiat 8
Investment Grade:B

This 1956 GT Boano Coupe sold for $410,652 at Sotheby’s Maranello sale, held June 28, 2005.
Ferrari just called the Boano and its sister model, the Ellena, the “250 GT.” However, like the later Daytona, their street names became the more popular identifiers and today these cars are generally known as Boanos and Ellenas, or low-roof and high-roof Boanos.
Pinin Farina designed the model for Ferrari, but at the time the carrozzeria was moving to a larger facility and was not able to build the car. Construction duties fell to former Ghia designer Mario Boano and his Carrozzeria Boano shop, hence the name. But about a year into production, Mario got an offer from Fiat asking him to set up its Centro Stile (design center). He jumped at the opportunity, selling the manufacturing concern to his son-in-law Ezio Ellena and partner Luciano Pollo. The business was rechristened Carrozzeria Ellena and production continued without a hitch. While the first 250 GTs built by Ellena were continuations of the Boano model, a redesign quickly appeared, and most Ellena-built 250 GTs featured a new, higher roof, and doors without vent windows.
Forza magazine recently asked an esteemed group of Ferrari personalities to submit their choices for the top ten Ferrari road cars from the first 20 years of Ferrari production. The 250 LWB model, made up of the Europa, Boano, and Ellena derivatives, was number seven on the list. The selection had little to do with styling or performance, but centered more on historical significance: The 250 LWB was Ferrari’s first venture into series production. Cars of this series were civilized road cars, not detuned race cars, and were the foundation of Ferrari’s commercial empire.
The Boano was a relatively simple design, which led to a high build quality for the era. Pinin Farina had created the car for series production, which allowed Boano to replicate them with unusual standardization for Ferrari. Unfortunately, the design was not one of Pinin Farina’s best. While pleasant enough to look at, with no glaringly unattractive features, the Boano at the same time lacked the elegance and style usually associated with coachbuilt Ferraris.
The subdued styling of the Boano traditionally kept its values among the lowest of V12 Ferraris, and for years they were entry-level cars priced about the same as a 250 GTE or a 250 Pininfarina coupe. By the 1980s, however, the Boano became recognized for its significant place in Ferrari history, and prices began to accelerate up towards their current range of $125,000-$200,000. So how, then, do we explain the $410,000 paid here?
First, let me make a digression about the auction itself. Sotheby’s pulled off a major coup in launching this Maranello sale. It was able to get Ferrari to lend its name, a building to use for the event, and even consign some special items to the auction. This endorsement ensured Sotheby’s worldwide publicity, along with the credibility to attract exceptional consignments and exceptional bidders.
Unfortunately, potential does not always equal results. Multiple problems, from the lack of air conditioning in the auction arena to a lack of experience at auctioning automobiles, turned Sotheby’s slam-dunk into a disappointment. With an auction commission of up to 30% applied once all the various taxes were figured in, the major cars found little interest and many went home unsold. But on the other hand, some lesser cars brought unbelievably high numbers. The Boano fell into this category.
Even factoring in the exchange rate and taxes, $410k is simply a stunning amount for a Boano. By comparison, at Monterey last year, Christie’s sold a Boano that had undergone a cost-no-object restoration for $220,000.
But there is one small detail here that might explain why someone would pay double the going rate for this car: aluminum. Only a handful of Boanos were built in alloy, and S/N 0527GT was one of them. This would and did add a significant bump to a Boano’s value. But a doubling? For the new owner, yes.
While this is a high price today, is this car a good long-term investment? Chances are the new owner will never find out. In the current Ferrari world, where today’s new owner is tomorrow’s speculator, consider the following: While researching this article, I called a former owner of S/N 0527GT. “What’s going on?” he asked. “This is the second call I had on the car this week.” The other caller had been offered the Boano by the new owner or his agent, and was doing his due diligence. While the new asking price wasn’t disclosed, it’s a sure bet to be north of $410k.
In other words, as this market continues to heat up, we begin to see more and more traces of the last molten period, 1989-91. Then, as with this 1956 GT Boano Coupe now, the mere paying of a world record price for a car was enough for the new owner to justify asking even more immediately after the purchase. Let’s just call it business as usual in the Ferrari world.
(Historical and descriptive information courtesy of the auction company.)

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