There are special V8 Ferraris, and then there are special V8 Ferraris…
By Matt Bird / Tuesday, 17 October 2023 / Loading comments
Poor old Ferrari 348 – it never did get much love. Replaced by the prettier, more capable F355 in the mid-1990s and made to look a bit old hat by the Honda NSX when it was on sale, the GTB, GTS and Spider are not really regarded as Ferrari’s best V8 sports cars. But this isn’t any 348 – it’s a GT Competizione. And that makes it very, very special indeed. Because before there were Pistas and Speciales, before even the 355 Challenge, the GTC was Maranello’s rare and raw road racer.
It was first seen in 1994, with 50 units built to celebrate an Italian GT2 championship in 1993. It was also, effectively, a final edition for the 348, and what a way to go. Every single one was Rosso Corsa, with a unique exhaust for another 10hp from the 3.4-litre V8 as well as a lower final drive and better gear linkage. The weight was reduced massively (think 200kg or so) thanks to the use of carbon-kevlar for some body panels and removing most of the interior bar the stunning F40-style seats. A new steering wheel was individually numbered.
In the chassis, the superb Speedline wheels were a little wider than standard, and the suspension was revised to accommodate, including uprated springs, dampers and rose-joints. (There’s a site dedicated to the Competizione, 348GTC.com, and it’s full of information. A great place to waste an afternoon…)
Even that didn’t get the GTC too much attention, because it was on sale at the same time as the then-new F355 for more money. Talk about a tough sell. In recent years, however, the 348 has become much more widely appreciated, thanks to its rarity, the purity of its driving experience in the paddleshift age and – we’re going to assume – the way it looks. It’s the 348 how it always should have been.
This one is extra special as a right-hand-drive example. It’s believed there were just eight UK-spec GTCs like this, which is a tiny number even by limited edition Ferrari standards. Number 36 of the 50 was registered in September 1994 and has racked up an impressive 50,000 miles since, with plenty of history to support that. The cambelt was done last year at a Ferrari main dealer, for some evidence of the love that’s been invested on this 348 – at a cost of almost £5,000, too…
The exact price for the Comp is POA but, amazingly, 25 per cent of the UK GTC allocation is currently for sale on PH. Number 41 is a similar mileage and available at £225k, for some gauge on pricing. Or about what its Porsche 964 RS contemporary might cost, both unloved when new for being too hardcore and now revered for their focus and back-to-basics thrills. No pleasing some folk. Time to see what all the excitement is about…
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