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Sold for: £189,200
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The streamlined, low and shapely lines of the 365 GT/4 Berlinetta Boxer, and its successor, the carburetted and subsequently fuel-injected 512, were to dictate the styling approach at Maranello for years to come. Launched to compete with the Lamborghini Muira and upgraded to compete with its successor, the Countach, the 'BB' was the first production Ferrari to be fitted with the boxer-type 12-cylinder engine derived from the Formula 1 unit of the period. The architecture was not that of the classic front-engined and rather upright, V12 Ferraris of old and it could be argued that the BB was the first 'proper' mid-engined Ferrari. The Boxer's moniker was derived from the fact that the cylinder banks form an angle of 180°, resulting in an engine with a flat, rectangular shape which enabled the car's centre of gravity to be lowered. The horizontally opposed pistons were said to resemble a pair of boxers alternating punches and the 'Boxer' nickname was to stick for this engine layout, even when used by other manufacturers. This low centre of gravity enabled the designers to pen the assertive stance that was to be typical of all future Ferraris.
The BBi was the final evolution of the Boxer and was launched at the Frankfurt Auto Show in 1981. The styling was left largely unaltered, but the car now featured an advanced, and far more reliable, Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection system offering 360bhp at 6,200 rpm, 0-60mph in 5.4 seconds and 179mph. Maranello's investment in mid-engine engineering ensured the BB's stylistic DNA was to be around until production of the Ferrari 328 ended in 1989, some 18 years since the launch of the original Boxer, the 365 BB. In the UK, just 42 right-hand drive versions of the BBi were ever imported making this model a very rare, desirable and collectable car.
This, best of breed, UK right-hand drive 512 BBi is one of those 42 cars and was supplied new by Colmore Depot of Birmingham on 16th June 1982 finished in the classic colour combination of Rosso with Tan leather. It has the distinction of being one family-owned from new as the original owner is our vendor’s father who has himself owned several significant Ferrari milestone cars over the years, including a Daytona, 308 GTS, 328 GTS and a 355 GTS which he still drives regularly at the age of 84!
Passing the car to his son in 1998, it has since been enjoyed on a number of UK and European tours over the years, whilst being professionally maintained by a mix of Ferrari main agents and respected specialists. The comprehensive history file includes all relevant service invoices and documentation from new, as well as details of a substantial restoration which took place in 1997. This included a full-body repaint and an engine-out service with a 512TR single plate clutch conversion ~giving a lighter feel to the clutch and a much-enhanced driving experience.
Today, the car has covered just 20,964 enjoyable and incident-free miles, making this one of the lowest mileage examples available and, looking at the photographs, it's clear to see that this is a very original car that's been cherished from new, well maintained and properly stored throughout its life. This is the first time that the family have ever offered the car for sale and, as such, it represents a very special opportunity for the discerning Ferrari enthusiast.
Video of the Ferrari 512BBi