When the Lamborghini Miura appeared, high-performance coupes with engines in front of the driver began to look quite old fashioned to some observers. Stung by outspoken criticism of their front-engined Daytona models, Ferrari unveiled at the 1971 Turin Motor Show the aggressive 365 BB flat-twelve, mid-engined Boxer Berlinetta. At this point it was still a concept car used to make a point, demonstrating what could be done with a flat-twelve powerplant similar to that used in the Scuderia’s Formula One cars. Ing. Mauro Forghiere’s powerful flat-twelve engines went on to bring Ferrari many laurels in Formula One and endurance racing from 1970 to 1973.
Both the concept car and the engine were too good to waste and in 1973 the 4.4-liter 365 GT4 BB “Boxer,” a road-going production version of the earlier prototype, was launched at the Paris Motor Show. Combining the flat twelve with aggressive styling by Pininfarina, Ferrari set a theme for their high-performance road cars that would evolve for almost a decade.
This 365 GT4 BB appears in very presentable order and has probably been repainted. The yellow paintwork over black sills is most attractive. The interior is in very good condition and there is an original type Eviatone radio/cassette player installed. The odometer shows just 5,017 kms, although this may not be original. The car is offered with its original instruction book. EPA paperwork indicated that this Boxer was imported from Italy by a Mr. Jerrold Goldine and passed to a Mr. Millett in 1983 where it was kept in a heated and dehumidified garage with the other Ferraris in his collection. Being a carbureted car, the new owner will undoubtedly enjoy the sound of the four triple-throat Webers working hard in the engine bay.
The car described above sold for a high bid of $56,400 (including 17.5% commission) at the Christie’s Auction held at the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles, California, on June 17, 2000.
To the uninformed, the 365 Boxer is just a minor player in the arena dominated by its big brother, the 512. This is probably due to the long production life of the 512 and consequently, the larger numbers of the later car (1,928 units versus 387). Another issue to the Stateside enthusiast of the time would have been the difficulty in importing and federalizing the 365 (no Boxers were ever officially brought to the US by Ferrari). The short-stroke 365 motor wasn’t anywhere near as clean running as the longer-stroke 512 or the very clean running fuel-
injected 512 BBi that followed. To the enthusiast at the time, however, the 365, with its high-winding, 7,200-rpm, 380 DIN horsepower, 12-cylinder engine, made for the most exciting experience in a street-legal Ferrari yet.
Though the displacement was the same as the 365 GTB/4 Daytona, the 365 Boxer produced twenty more horsepower than its front-engined cousin, thanks to the shorter, more direct inlet tract.