What might have been called patina a decade ago had slipped to scruffy
Unveiled at the 1966 Geneva Salon, the Ferrari 330 GTC allied the 275GTB chassis with a 330 2+2 engine. The Pininfarina coachwork blended the 400 Superamerica front with the tail of the 275GTS. This produced a very elegant car that is by no means out of place today.
The GTC provided plenty of room and comfort for two passengers and plenty of performance to match. In November 1966, The Motor conducted a road test by noted race driver/automotive journalist Paul Frere. He was highly impressed, noting ".the greatest surprise is the silence of the engine. In handling, the 330 GTC is exactly like all Ferraris I have driven before. It is as close to being neutral as one could want, but the most impressive feature of the handling is the solidness in which it changes directions, particularly in the S-bends where it tracks with about the same precision as a modern race car."
Frere achieved a lively 14.6 seconds for the standing quarter mile, almost exactly matching the figures produced by Road & Track when they tested the 330 GTS. They reported 14.9 seconds (at 95 mph) and a top speed of 145 mph. It is also of note that legendary Ferrari World Champion Phil Hill called the 330 GTC "the best road-going Ferrari ever built."
HIGHLY ORIGINAL EXAMPLE
This highly original example was supplied in the livery it still sports today and featured a factory-fitted radio, Borrani wheels, electric windows, and air conditioning. In 1998, it was acquired by the previous owner, who undertook a detailed and exacting mechanical rebuild that included extensive work to the engine, brakes, and application of the correct engine ancillaries per the factory specifications.
Continuing along these guidelines, the car has recently been treated to a thorough mechanical restoration and detailing to show standards. Aspects covered include a full suspension (necessitating new Koni shock absorbers), brake-line replacement, correct Michelin XWXs, exhaust system, clutch, and the transaxle has been removed and detailed. The only feature not currently functioning is the air conditioning.
SPECIALIST WAS CAPTIVATED
Save for the beneficial work already mentioned, the 1967 Ferrari 330 GTC is otherwise wonderfully original and thanks to careful ownership has aged gracefully; upon a recent inspection, a Christie's specialist was somewhat captivated by the whole package. The exterior is thought to still sport some original paint (at least to the roof) and prospective purchasers can either view the crazing and imperfections as a benefit or hindrance.
The brightwork is largely original, save for a few items that have been rechromed. On the inside, only the fitment of new carpet and refurbishment of the wood-rimmed steering wheel detract from the immaculate yet untouched feel that 10377 offers.
Accompanying the 330 GTC are records of recent work, owner's manual, jack (and jack pouch) and unsurprisingly, even the original keys. In our opinion, this fine survivor is ripe for enjoyment both in terms of aesthetic appreciation granted by the sympathetic manner to which it has been preserved and the level to which it has been optimized.
|Original List Price:
|Tune Up Cost:
|$450 (two required)
|Chassis Number Location:
|left frame member by steering box.
|Engine Number Location:
|right rear above motor mount.
|Ferrari Club of America. P. O. Box 720597 Atlanta, GA 30358
This 1967 Ferrari 330 GTC sold for $170,375 at Christie’s August 2006 Monterey Auction.
“The best road going Ferrari ever built.” These words, immortalized in an article written by Phil Hill in a 1966 Road & Track article, seem to be found in every blurb ever written about 330 GTCs. While Mr. Hill’s statement might have been spot on at that time, there’s more to the story.
EXCELLENT ON PAPER BUT.
Judging the 330 GTC as the best road-going Ferrari ever built is on par with saying that the Acura NSX is the best exotic ever built, or perhaps the 928 is the best Porsche ever built. It may have been a correct statement at the time, but one that enthusiasts and the marketplace tend to ignore. These cars set new standards for civilized performance driving but fell victim to their own success. Their lack of flaws make them excellent on paper, excellent on the road, and appealing to the eye, but they come off as bland in the total ownership experience. Meaning that, yes, they’re great cars but.
There’s no doubt the 330 GTC is a fine driver. The engine has a surprising amount of power. A firm push on the gas will knock you back in the seat as the acceleration demands your full attention. The engine sound is perfect, with a deep burble at idle that rises nicely with the RPMs. The transaxle is smooth with precise linkage. The steering is light and the suspension is tuned for an even ride with crisp handling. The brakes are strong enough to stand you on your ear. The styling is elegant and the interior is luxurious. The 330 GTC has everything going for it, so what’s not to love?
There are a huge number of great cars, and to stand above the crowd, a car has to have something special. The 330 GTC has excellent performance wrapped in a beautiful body with an attractive interior, but it lacks that something special to make it a great Ferrari. Ferrari enthusiasts will talk about how well a 330 GTC drives, but most would choose the more brutal Daytona if offered a choice. They will compliment the GTC’s graceful lines, but at a show will walk by one without a glance. They will debate it being the best Ferrari ever, but will write a bigger check for a more flawed model. The 330 GTC is a car you love but not one you lust after.
Which Car Are You Writing About?
I inspected the subject 1967 330 GTC before the auction and wanted to ask Christie’s, “Where’s the car in the catalog?” What might have been called patina a decade ago had slipped to scruffy. The car was complete and sound but the paint was checked and blemished beyond the “driver” stage. The interior looked old, and not in a good way. The exterior brightwork was dull and the underhood detailing must have been done on a different car. I don’t usually pick on catalogs, but whoever wrote this description could not have seen the car.
Over the last few years, 330 GTCs have more than doubled in value. Not long ago, average examples were slow sellers at $75,000. Today an average car will break $150,000 and an exceptional example should bring over $200,000. However, as the prices go up, so does the minimum level of acceptability.
In my opinion, $170,000 was all the money and then some for this car. At the least this car will need new paint with a color change, which will just emphasize the other flaws. You can’t paint the car without restoring it and you can’t restore it without getting buried. In my opinion, I suspect the purchaser was a speculator who felt the market will continue to go up fast enough to solve this dilemma. I predict we’ll be seeing this car up for auction again next year.