It was the need for a production-based engine for the new Formula 2 car that led to the introduction of a ‘junior’ Ferrari and, in 1967, the Dino 206 GT was born.
A compact, aluminium-bodied coupe of striking appearance, the Pininfarina-styled Dino – named after Enzo Ferrari’s son Alfredino Ferrari and intended as the first of a separate but related marque – was powered by a 2.0-litre, four-cam V6 engine, driven via a five-speed transaxle. The motor’s 180 bhp was enough to propel the 206 GT to 142 mph.
A 2.4-litre version on a longer wheelbase – the 246 GT you see here – replaced the Dino 206 in late 1969. The body was now steel and the cylinder block was made from cast-iron rather than aluminium. But the larger engine’s increased power – 195 bhp at 7,600 rpm – was adequate compensation for the weight gain.
BPB 84K was ordered on the 5 January 1972 for production in March. The car is said to have been ready early, as it was invoiced by the factory to Maranello Concessionaires Ltd on the 28 February 1972 for delivery to the UK by truck. This was to be one of 1,779 E-series cars built. Maranello invoiced the car to Ian M Stewart Ltd, of Crieff, Perthshire (Dino Scotland Agents) on the 28 March 1972 at a price of £4,690.44 including a full tank of petrol (£5.04) and a Phillips stereo (£135.00!).
The car was entered in the Christie’s Auction at Loews in May 1987 in the company of Ferrari 250 TRs. Perhaps not surprisingly, it failed to sell. However, as reported in the August 1987 edition of Thoroughbred and Classic Cars: ‘Sadly, one car that did not sell was quite the most superb Ferrari Dino 246 GT we had ever seen – the result of an incredible two-year rebuild organised by RAF fast jet pilot, Tim Wright, with labour from enthusiastic Scottish engineers. In Loews Auction company this little jewel was overshadowed. In a mechanical and cosmetic concours it should have won hands down; it was quite, quite superb.’
Car displayed courtesy of Andrew Illingworth from Tuesday 2 to Sunday 14 May 2017.