Fer­rari’s Re­venge

New Zealand Classic Car - - Future Car Ferrari 330 P4 Replica -

In 1967, Fer­rari in­tro­duced a sports rac­ing car that has since been hailed as one of the most beau­ti­ful cars ever built — the 330 P4. As with all Fer­raris of that era, the num­ber ‘330’ re­lated to the cu­bic ca­pac­ity of each cylin­der of the car’s V12 en­gine, while the P4 des­ig­na­tion de­noted this model was the fourth pro­to­type for rac­ing. As you’d ex­pect, each P4 was hand-built uti­liz­ing al­loy pan­els de­signed by Pin­in­fa­rina and formed over a tubu­lar chas­sis. It was in­tended for rac­ing only, and a road-go­ing ver­sion was never pro­duced. Only three P4s were ever made, while one P3 was up­graded to P4 spec­i­fi­ca­tions. It was pow­ered by a V12 pro­duc­ing 336kw (450bhp) with a to­tal weight of only 800kg, and Fer­rari in­tended the P4 to go head-to-head against Ford’s GT40 at Le Mans — the Ford, of course, hav­ing been orig­i­nally de­signed to beat Fer­rari at its own game af­ter Enzo Fer­rari backed out of a deal to sell his his­toric com­pany to Ford. Hav­ing al­ready been hu­mil­i­ated by Ford at Le Mans in 1966, Fer­rari was out for re­venge, and the first op­por­tu­nity ar­rived at the fol­low­ing year’s 24 Hours of Day­tona race. Only two 330 P4s were avail­able for the race, Fer­rari’s third en­try be­ing a con­verted P3. Fer­rari’s num­ber one car saw Lorenzo Ban­dini team up with our very own Chris Amon who, iron­i­cally, had driven the 1966 Le Mans–win­ning GT40 along with Bruce Mclaren. In the event, Fer­rari staged a glo­ri­ous one-two-three fin­ish, with the Ban­dini/amon P4 tak­ing the che­quered flag. The best Ford could man­age was sixth place. The com­bi­na­tion of Ban­dini/amon and the P4 re­peated their Day­tona suc­cess at the Monza 1000km race in April, with the Mike Parkes / Lu­dovico Scarfiotti P4 in sec­ond place. Alas, when it came to the big race of ’67 — the 24 Heures Du Mans — the GT40 driven by Dan Gur­ney and AJ Foyt took out over­all honours, although Fer­rari man­aged to nail down the sec­ond and third spots. If that wasn’t enough, for 1968 the in­ter­na­tional rac­ing au­thor­i­ties al­tered reg­u­la­tions, re­duc­ing el­i­gi­ble en­gine ca­pac­ity to 3.0 litres, ren­der­ing the P4s with their 4.0-litre en­gines re­dun­dant.

Chris Amon in the 330 P4 at the Day­tona 24 Hour in 1967

Fer­rari ar­ranged for the win­ning P4s to cross the line at Day­tona to­gether — although the Amon/ban­dini car (#23) was clas­si­fied as the win­ner

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