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The Gstaad Sale / 1991 Ferrari F40Chassis no. ZFFGJ34B000089982 Engine no. 27824

LOT 138
Delivered new to Switzerland, offered with all books and tools
1991 Ferrari F40
3 juillet 2022, 14 h 00 UTC+2
Gstaad, Palace Hotel

Sold for CHF1,955,000 inc. premium

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1991 Ferrari F40
Chassis no. ZFFGJ34B000089982
Engine no. 27824

• One of only 1,315 made
• Matching numbers example
• Present ownership since 1996
• Circa 20,500 kilometres from new
• Fuel tanks changed in January 2014


"The take-up into the next gear is flawless and, with the turbos cranking hard, the blast of acceleration just goes on again and you seem to be in a blur of time conquering distance, gearshifts and noise. It has the tonal quality of an F1 engine, if not the sheer ferocity. From outside, if you stand and listen, you hear the frantic whoosh as the turbos start to drive oh-so-hard." - Autocar magazine, May 1988.

Introduced in 1988 to celebrate Enzo Ferrari's 40 years as a motor manufacturer, the iconic F40 was the ultimate supercar and is historically significant as the first production passenger car to have a claimed top speed of over 200mph. It is also the last Ferrari to be personally approved by Enzo Ferrari prior to his death in 1988.

A mid-engined, two-seater berlinetta, the F40 was a development of the limited-production 288 GTO and like the latter - but unlike the preceding 308 series - mounted its power unit longitudinally rather than transversely. Much had been learned from the development of the Evoluzione version of the 288 GTO - intended for the soon-to-be-abandoned Group B competitions - which enabled Ferrari to take the F40 from drawing board to dealers' showrooms in just 13 months. A 2,936cc quad-cam V8 with four valves per cylinder, the F40 engine employed twin IHI turbochargers to liberate 478bhp (approximately 352kW) at 7,000rpm. For the seriously speed-addicted, this could be boosted by 200bhp by means of a factory tuning kit.

Of equal, if not greater, technical interest was the method of body/chassis construction, the F40 drawing on Ferrari's Formula 1 experience in its use of composite technology. A one-piece plastic moulding, the body was bonded to the tubular steel chassis to create a lightweight structure of immense rigidity. The doors, bonnet, boot lid and other removable panels were carbon fibre. Pugnaciously styled by Pininfarina, the F40 incorporated the latest aerodynamic aids in the form of a dam-shaped nose and high rear aerofoil. Despite the need to generate considerable downforce - and with a top speed of 201mph, higher than the take-off speed of many light aircraft, the F40 needed all the downforce it could get - the result was a commendably low drag coefficient of just 0.34. The F40's interior reinforced its image as a thinly disguised race-car, with body-contoured seats and an absence of carpeting and trim, while the first 50 cars had sliding Plexiglas windows. When it came to actual competition, race-prepared F40s more than held their own and in the Global GT series proved quicker on many circuits than McLaren's F1 GTR.

Autocar concluded its test thus: "on a smooth road it is a scintillatingly fast car that is docile and charming in its nature; a car that is demanding but not difficult to drive, blessed as it is with massive grip and, even more importantly, superb balance and manners. You can use its performance - the closest any production carmaker has yet come to race car levels - and revel in it. ...there's little doubt it is the very personification of the term sports car." Even today the F40 has the power to impress.

A production total of 400 units was planned initially and the suggested retail price in 1987 was approximately US$400,000 (five times that of the preceding 288 GTO). Nevertheless, such was the level of demand that the F40 was changing hands at the height of the late 1980s supercar boom for many times the list price! When production ceased in 1992 only 1,315 of these quite exceptional cars had been completed, all of which were left-hand drive and finished in Rosso Corsa when they left the factory.

Today, much of the F40's enduring appeal is the fact that it is one of the last great 'analogue' supercars, designed and built at a time when the driver was expected to be in full control and before the introduction of electronic interventions in the form of anti-lock brakes, traction control, stability control, and paddle-shift automatic gearboxes, which have since become the norm. It also lacked a brake servo, air conditioning, interior door handles, and power steering... As Ferrari marketing executive Giovanni Perfetti explained: "We wanted it to be very fast, sporting in the extreme and Spartan. Customers had been saying our cars were becoming too plush and comfortable. The F40 is for the most enthusiastic of our owners who want nothing but sheer performance." Even so, the F40 could not remain unaffected by the march of technological progress, gaining refinements such as ABS, catalytic converters, and adjustable suspension as development progressed.

This matching numbers F40 was delivered new to Switzerland via the official Ferrari dealer Garage Frey AG and registered to Mr Bruno Frey on 24th September 1991. The current vendor purchased the Ferrari from Frey AG on 10th October 1996, by which time it had covered 8,100 kilometres. The car has been stored for some years; the last service was carried out in November 2015 while the fuel tanks were changed in January 2014. G2 Racing's invoice for CHF26,285 for changing the tanks is on file and the original tanks are included for the sale. An invoice on file records the odometer reading in 2015 as 20,089 kilometres.

Having covered only 20,500 kilometres from new, and presented in immaculate condition, this epoch-defining Ferrari supercar comes with all books and tools and is offered with Swiss customs document 13.20 enabling it to be registered in Switzerland should the fortunate next owner so desire (it has always carried dealers' plates when being used on the road).

Reacquainting himself with the F40, F50 and Enzo Ferraris for Octane magazine (July 2014 edition) racing driver Mark Hales declared: "The F40 is for me, the special one. Not just because I have spent so much time in them, but because it was such an explosive, other-worldly creation when it first appeared, and it still retains much of that character".

Saleroom notices

Please note that this vehicle is not offered with any original registration documents, bidders should satisfy themselves as to registration requirements in their own jurisdiction. Please contact the department for further information. Please also note that this example has no catalyser and is therefore not homologated in Switzerland.

Informations supplémentaires

Actualités et chroniques