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The Quail Auction / 1949 Ferrari 166 Inter Cabriolet Chassis no. 033 S Engine no. 033 S

Lot 56
1949 Ferrari 166 Inter Cabriolet
19 August 2022, 11:00 PDT
Carmel, Quail Lodge & Golf Club

US$1,800,000 - US$2,200,000

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1949 Ferrari 166 Inter Cabriolet
Coachwork by Stabilimenti Farina

Chassis no. 033 S
Engine no. 033 S

1,992cc SOHC All-Alloy 'Colombo' V12 Engine
Weber 32 DCF/3 Twin-choke Carburetor
110bhp at 6,00rpm
5-Speed Manual Transmission
Independent Front Suspension - Live Rear Axle
4-Wheel Hydraulic Drum Brakes

*Superb, factory-correct restoration recently performed by Ferrari Judge and restoration specialist
*One of just 3 bespoke, truly unique hand-built examples made
*Matching-numbers example, retaining its original bodywork and chassis
*Fastidiously documented with restoration file, Massini report and Ferrari Classiche 'Red Book' Certification
*Ready for the most competitive Concours d'Elegance judging around the world


Enzo Ferrari had begun planning his new car during the war and in 1946 commissioned Gioacchino Colombo to design a small-capacity V12 engine for it. The 1.5-litre Tipo 125 unit took its designation from the capacity of an individual cylinder (125cc), thus instigating a system of nomenclature that would characterize Ferraris for many years to some. Ferrari's Tipo 125 sports-racer made its competition debut in 1947 and by mid-season had been re-designated Tipo 159, its engine having been enlarged to 1.9 liters. Later in the year the first Tipo 166 (2.0-litre) unit appeared. In race tune up to 150bhp was available - the Inter road car with its twin-choke Weber carburetor produced 110bhp - which was transmitted via a five-speed gearbox, an unusual feature in those days, even on a competition car. The twin-tube chassis employed transverse leaf and double wishbone front suspension and a semi-elliptically sprung live rear axle located by torsional stabilizing bars. Houdaille hydraulic shock absorbers were fitted all round.

Before long Ferrari had become the dominant force in international sports car racing, 1949 proving to be a phenomenal year for the Tipo 166, which claimed victory in three of the world's most prestigious events: the Mille Miglia, Targa Florio and Le Mans 24-Hour Race, a quite outstanding achievement.


Offered here is a truly significant Ferrari, one of just three such examples featuring bespoke Cabriolet coachwork by Carrozzeria Stabilimenti Farina. Ferrari's road cars were allocated odd numbers at this time (the competition cars had even numbers) making this car only the sixteenth road-going Ferrari completed.

According to the report on file compiled by leading Ferrari historian Marcel Massini, Ferrari 166 chassis no. 033 S was manufactured by hand during a 9-month period, starting in June of 1949. On October 7th, 1949, the Certificate of Origin was issued, and on November 5th of 1949, Enzo Ferrari sold the Ferrari to one of his top VIP clients, Dr. Enrico Wax of Wax & Vitale S.p.A, Genova, Italy based importer of Johnny Walker whiskey and owner of many important early Ferraris. 3,000,000 lire was paid for the car. 033 S was to be clothed by Carrozzeria Stabilimenti Farina in delicate Cabriolet bodywork featuring a split windshield as seen on the car today, and the work was completed so the new Ferrari could be road registered by March of 1950. The great coachbuilding legacy of Stabilimenti Farina has long been known for its elegant and pure designs. In business from 1906 until 1953, the Turin-based firm employed many of the greatest Italian automotive designers in their early years, such as Pietro Frua, Felice Mario Boano, Giovanni Michelotti, Alfredo Vignale, and of course Battista Farina, who went on to establish Pininfarina.

The Ferrari was finished exactly as it appears today, with the Cabriolet bodywork painted 'Avorio Antico' and the interior trimmed in 'Bleu Ceruleo' with matching soft top. In keeping with tradition, the car was built with right-hand drive steering - it being deemed safer to sit on the right when driving across the Alps, which at that time were cursed with poor roads lacking in safety barriers. In July of 1951, Wax & Vitale sold 033 S to the second owner, Mr. Patrizio Agostini, son of Ludovico Agostini, of Rome, Italy. The Ferrari was registered on Roman license plate 'Roma 152221' at this time, just as seen on the car today. By 1954, 033 S was found in the hands of fellow Roman Sante Paura, before being put away in a yard in Northeastern Italy. By the late 1960s, the early and very important Ferrari was recognized and acquired by Rino Botteon, an Italian shoemaker residing in Switzerland. The car would remain with Botteon until his death in 2004, stored in the Pordenone region of Italy, in somewhat derelict yet complete state. In 2012, the rare Stabilimenti Farina Cabriolet was acquired by the consignor, renowned Ferrari collector, judge and restorer Mr. Heinrich Kämpfer of Seengen, Switzerland. Known for his exceptional restorations of early, coachbuild Ferraris to exacting factory specifications, 033 S had found the right home. Completed between 2014 and 2018, the restoration was carried out as expected in the most period-correct way, with incredible attention to detail. The generally sound, original aluminum Stabilimenti Farina bodywork was striped and finished in the original 'Avorio Antico' exterior color for the car, and the interior trimmed in 'Bleu Ceruleo'.

Today, 033 S presents in immaculate and authentic condition throughout, showing off the many intricate details and early production experimental features, such as the early prancing horse emblem on the front. The engine compartment is correctly finished by brush in the battleship grey color, and houses the original, matching-numbers engine number 033 S. Marchal lights are fitted as are the original Cabo light alloy wheels shod on period-correct tires. The interior is beautifully detailed with the coachbuilder's badges, Jaeger instruments, and original orange Bakelite switchgear. A lovely Chronograph clock is fitted on the glovebox door. The impressive restoration file shows photos of interior pieces before and after restoration for accuracy, the engine stripped down for rebuild, and the body in bare aluminum.

Once the restoration was completed, 033 S was fully certified by Ferrari Classiche, and is offered with its red book certification, confirming that the car retains its original chassis, bodywork, engine, transmission, suspension, brakes and other major components.
Offered with 033 S is a comprehensive history file, containing Marcel Massini's report, archival photos from when the car was new and during Botteon's ownership, copies of the old 'Automobile Club d'Italia' paperwork, the Fiva-issued passport, the Ferrari Classiche certification book, and tool bags made to factory-correct specifications.

Many Ferraris are historically important, but few are of greater significance than the Commendatore's first car built for road use, the Tipo 166. As one of just 3 bespoke, truly unique hand-built examples made, featuring a superb, factory-correct restoration by a discerning Ferrari specialist and retaining its matching-numbers engine and bodywork, 033 S would be an important addition to any Ferrari collection, and a competitive entry to the most selective Concours d'Elegance events around the world.


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