It’s one of only four of its kind in the world.
The 2019 Monterey Car Week kicks off in California next month, where Bugatti is rumored to reveal a new limited-edition hypercar. This won’t be the only expensive exotic at the show, though, as a very rare 1958 Ferrari 250 GT Series 1 Cabriolet will be going up for auction by Gooding & Company.
What makes this vintage Prancing Horse so special is that it’s not only one of only 40 GT Series 1 Cabriolets ever built, it’s one of only four that has distinctive coachwork details by Pininfarina, which include covered headlights, side vents, and bumperettes. Even the color combination is unusual: the beautiful exterior is finished in black with a contrasting green leather interior.
Like all Series I Cabriolets, chassis number 0789 was handbuilt by Pininfarina. Its first owner was the famous playboy and actor Prince Alessandro "Dado” Ruspoli of Rome, who was also one of Ferrari’s VIP clients. Dado was often seen driving his exotic sports cars with iconic figures like Salvador Dalí, Brigitte Bardot, Truman Capote, and Pablo Picasso. Prince Ruspoli eventually sold the Series I, and the car later came into the possession of numerous Italian enthusiasts during the 1970s and ’80s.
This Series I Cabriolet then came to the US and was owned by Ron Hein, an award-winning car restorer and collector. Hein gave the GT a comprehensive restoration, earning First in Class at the 1994 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, at the 1994 Santa Barbara Concours d’Elegance, and at the 1994 Newport Beach Concours d’Elegance. It also won Best of Show at the 1996 FCA Vintage Concours in Carmel Valley as well as the Outstanding GT award at both the 1995 and 1997 Rodeo Drive Concours in Beverly Hills.
This is the first time this pristine GT Series 1 Cabriolets has been sold at a public auction. But such exclusivity comes at a price: Gooding & Company estimates the car will fetch between $7 million and $8 million when it goes under the hammer next month.