We think we know the reason.
It’s become as popular as traditional restorations. The possibilities are as endless as the final price tag you’d be willing (and able) to pay. Restomods (restoration + modifications) of classic cars, ranging from Ford Mustangs to the Porsche 911 to any of Icon’s Land Cruisers and Broncos, aren’t so new anymore. The art of restomodding has been around for years but once places like Classic Recreations, the Ring Brothers, Singer Vehicle Design and Icon 4X4 opened up, things really took off.
But something occurred to me the other day: Why aren’t there more Ferrari restomods? A quick search turned up very few results, and this 1984 Ferrari 512 BBi restomod was, by far, the best one. It was actually up for sale a few years ago for $365,000. No clue what’s happened to it since, but it’s absolutely gorgeous inside and out. Notice the carbon-fiber fender liners, larger wheels, and lowered height. Its mid-mounted flat-12 looks as lovely as ever. I’d treasure every moment behind the wheel. So why aren’t there more restomod Ferraris? Because owners would become outcasts in the very exclusive classic Ferrari community. Plus, Ferrari HQ wouldn’t at all be happy. In fact, they’d be downright insulted. Why?
These are the Ferraris that were built when Enzo Ferrari was still alive and called the shots. Restomodding one of his cars would be like pissing on his grave, implying old man Enzo didn’t do it right the first time. And then there’s that depreciation factor. Here’s the thing about Ferraris, especially the best ones: they don’t depreciate. Quite the opposite. Ferraris are known to dramatically increase in value and it’s not at all surprising to see, say a 250 GTO, sell for well above $30 million at auction. Do a search and you’ll find that original 512 BBs go for $300,000-$450,000 or so. Those figures will certainly go up, while the $365,000 restomod 512 BBi won’t. It could even lose value, depending on demand for original 512s.
Not all car brands are ideal for restomodding purposes, and Ferrari is a prime example. The 911 reimagined by Singer works, among other reasons, because Porsche built over 62,000 964 911s. Only 2,323 BBs were made. Yes, the market value for classic 911s has been going up, but couldn’t that partially be the result of Singer’s outstanding work and its popularity? Perhaps, but the point is Singer proved there was a market void for insanely expensive restomod 964 911s. The classic Ferrari community won’t respond with anywhere near that level of enthusiasm. Ferrari itself won’t approve and restomod Ferrari owners could be banished and tarred and feathered on their way out. Such is the price of Ferrari ownership.