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Ferrari Daytona: 365 GTB/4 & GTB/4 Spyder

The 365 Daytona is generally regarded as one of Ferrari's greatest ever GT's. A combination of enormous performance, stunning Pininfarina bodywork and its place in history as the last front-engined Ferrari GT that Fiat had no hand. Therefore it occupies a special place in Maranello history. The press in recognition of the prancing horse’s stunning 1-2-3 victory unofficially conjured up the world famous Daytona name at 1967's Daytona 24 Hours. Rumors persist that Ferrari was actually intending to name their new model as such but for some reason they never officially used this evocative title themselves.
A very early 365 GTB/4 Daytona from 1968  
There were two prototypes (chassis number 10287 and 11001) built. Chassis number 10287 still survives.  It is a covered headlight car with the nose projected forward farther than the long nose 275 GTB body. Styling refinements continued until the current style of the present car.  The early cars had the headlights covered with a plastic band called perspex. The Daytona was a stopgap model between Ferrari's outgoing 275 GTB/4 and their mid-engined 365 GT4 Berlinetta Boxer, the development of which was running well behind schedule. Influenced by the fact they were beginning to suffer a number of financial problems, Ferrari decided to produce what was essentially an updated version of an existing model. However, despite the troubled background to its inception, Daytona's themselves were in no way affected, Ferrari producing what became the definitive GT of its time. A traditional welded tubular steel chassis designated Tipo 605 bore many similarities to the Tipo 596 of the 275 GTB/4, including its 2400mm wheelbase. Some important developments were made though, Tipo 605 frames most obviously having their inner tub now formed from fiberglass. A family lineage extended to the engine, Daytona's running what was essentially an enlarged Tipo 226 60° V12 from the outgoing 275. Designated Tipo 251, displacement was up from 3.3 to 4.4-liters, 4390cc to be exact, thanks to a bore and stroke of 81mm x 71mm respectively. Unsurprisingly then, output was also significantly higher with 352bhp at 7500rpm, compression being set at 8.8:1 and six twin-choke Weber 40 DCN 20/21A carburetors  (European spec cars running 40 DCN 21). This meant that, despite being an undoubted heavyweight at over 3880 pounds, the Daytona became the world’s fastest production car.
A top speed of 175mph and zero to sixty-sprint time of 5.3 seconds were enough to eclipse every other manufacturer, even Lamborghini. Meanwhile, as had become normal practice since the mid fifties, Ferrari commissioned Turinese carrozzeria Pininfarina to design the Daytona's bodywork. Exuding power from every angle, the Daytona remains one of the most jaw-dropping post war GT's to this day. Panels were fabricated by Scaglietti of Modena who used hand-formed and hammer-welded small sections of steel for everything other than the doors, bonnet and boot lid, these being light alloy.
Pininfarina were responsible for the bodywork  
The effortlessly long bonnet and chiseled nose housed a full width perspex cover over the headlights, the rakish cabin being set well back and accentuating the wild front end, both cockpit and wings leading seamlessly into the taught, muscular tail. But for a pair of engine vents carved into the hood, Pininfarina kept the Daytona free of ducts, louvers and blisters, its exceptionally clean profile undoubtedly minimizing the effects of age. Inside, the cabin was just as impressive and despite featuring nothing revolutionary, was nevertheless wonderfully styled and finished in the finest Connolly leather, all-round visibility proving very good. The dash covering on the earliest Daytona's was black vinyl, this soon getting replaced by an “anti-dazzle material” often called mousehair. Complemented by a wood-rimmed steering wheel, leather-trimmed bucket seats and electric windows, the new model was launched during October 1968's Paris Salon and won enormous praise.
It was the fastest production road car available and would be the last of Ferrari's front-engined GT's, a fact not lost on writers at the time. Relatively few official options were available including air conditioning ($885.00), and either a Voxson ($285.00) or Blaupunk($390.00) radio. Later upgrades included Borrani wire wheels, wider Cromodora wheels and metal nose guards.  A handful of cars destined for important customers did make it to the Servizio Assistenza Clienti though, their Tipo 251 motors being breathed upon to produce around 380bhp.
An early retractable headlight 365 GTB/4  
Shortly after debuting the gorgeous GTB/4 Spyder, a number of important revisions were introduced on both versions. These changes came about as a result of the newly imposed federal safety legislation in the USA that deemed covered headlights illegal.  Ferrari and Pininfarina were subsequently being forced into carrying out a mild front-end makeover. Their answer was to fit the Daytona with retractable headlights in early 1971. In this year the nose was decorating with a distinctive aluminum paint finish to give the impression of the old perspex arrangement. However idea was dropped the same year (see illustration above). As a consequence of these lighting requirements, only one genuine GTB/4 Spyder (that Frankfurt Show car, chassis 12851) was ever built with the perspex front-end. All subsequent examples featured retractable headlights. As production went on, Ferrari made changes to the indicator lenses. Later cars came more often than not with uniform orange lenses whereas earlier examples tended to get combination lenses. There was also a switch from aluminum to steel doors (these providing a little more side impact protection) and the arrival of a smaller-diameter leather-rimmed steering wheel. Production continued in both Berlinetta and Spyder forms until late 1973.  The Daytona was discontinued in 1973 to make way for the overdue mid-flat-12-engined 365 GT4 Berlinetta Boxer. By this time, Ferrari had completed 1284 GTB/4's, 179 of which were right-hand drive. A total of just 121(as well as one prototype Spyder making it a total of 122) Daytona Spyders were manufactured by comparison. Of the 122 Spyders only seven were right hand drive.
One of the 122 genuine 365 GTB/4 Spyders s/n 16915

Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona

Years Made: 1968-1973
Engine Type: 251
Cylinders: 12, in 60° V
Bore: 81 mm / 3.19 in
Stroke: 71 mm / 2.79 in
Capacity: 4390 cc / 268 cu in
Compression Ratio: 8.8 : 1
Horsepower: 352 bhp / 7,500 rpm
Torque: 315 lb ft / 5,500 rpm
Camshafts: 4, DOHC
Valves: 2 per cylinder
Ignition: 2 distributers
Spark Plugs: 1 per cylinder
Fuel System: 6 Weber 40 DCN 20 (Europe)
6 Weber 40 DCN 21 (U.S.)
Lubrication: Dry sump
Cooling: Water
Gearbox type: Manual, synchromesh
Gears: 5 forward, 1 reverse
Clutch: Borg & Beck single disc
Chassis type: 605
Chassis construction: Multi-tube steel
Body: Berlinetta: steel, with aluminum doors,
hood and trunk lid
Body designer: Pininfarina
Body builder: Scaglietti
Body length: 4425 / 174.2 in
Body width: 1760 mm / 69.3 in
Body height: 1244 mm / 49.0 in
Wheelbase: 2400 mm / 94.5 in
Track front: 1440 mm / 56.7 in
Track rear: 1425 mm / 56.1 in
Weight (with oil and water): 1633 kg / 3600 lb
Suspension front: Independent, unequal A arms, coil springs,
tubular shock absorbers, anti-roll bar
Suspension rear: Independent, unequal A arms, coil springs,
tubular shock absorbers, anti-roll bar
Brakes front: Vented disc, 287 mm / 11.3 in
Brakes rear: Vented disc, 294 mm / 11.6 in
Tires front/rear: Michelin XVR, 215 / 70-15
Wheels front/rear: Cromodora cast light alloy, 15 x 7.5L
Top speed: 278 kmh / 174 mph
0 to 60 mph: 5.9 seconds
Options: Borrani wire wheels

All content is © 2005
Last updated 3/8/05