Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Monterey, California | August 15-17, 2019
The Ferrari 375 MM was a race car. The MM stood for Mille Miglia, the famed Italian road race. That’s what the 26 examples of the 375 MM were destined for, along with the Carrera Panamericana and other similar events.
But sometimes exclusive Ferrari clientele convinced Enzo that his latest race car would make their perfect road car. Such was the case with this car, which was purchased by early Ferrari fan Bob Wilke. It’s powered by a 340 horsepower, 4.5-liter V12 and was the second-to-last 375 MM built.
It carries a striking body by Ghia and was the final Ferrari bodied by that particular carrozzeria. The paint scheme is spot on and compliments the Borrani wire wheels and the overall stance of the car exceptionally well. Debuting at the 1955 Turin Motor Show, the car was retained by Wilke’s family until 1974. It was never restored but has been repainted. It’s one of RM’s “big money Ferraris” and you can read more about it here. Check out more from this sale here.
1953 Ferrari 340/375 MM Berlinetta Competizione by Pinin Farina
Offered by RM Auctions | Lake Como, Italy | May 25, 2013
This Ferrari 375 MM was one of the first 375 MMs built by Ferrari. It was constructed early in 1953 to be ready in time for the 1953 World Sportscar Championship. The 375 road car was an evolution of the 340 but for the race cars, a special 340/375MM was built – meaning it had the proven, competitive chassis of the 340 with the new, more powerful 375 engine.
That engine is a 340 horsepower 4.5-liter V12 that came straight from Ferraris Formula One car (this car was originally fitted with a 4.1-liter V12 but had the engine switched by the factory prior to the 1953 Spa 24 Hours). The body was designed and built by Pinin Farina. Three of these such cars were built and the one you are looking at was driven and raced by legends. It’s competition history includes:
1953 24 Hours of Le Mans – 56th, disqualified even though it ran well (with Giuseppe Farina and Mike Hawthorn)
1953 Spa 24 Hours – 4th, not running at finish (with Alberto Ascari and Luigi Villoresi)
1953 Carrera Panamericana – 6th (with Maglioli, Forese Salviati and Mario Ricci)
The car passed between owners, spending time in American and British collections before the current owner acquired it in 2004. It has been professionally restored to its 1953 Le Mans livery. No estimate was available as I wrote this as the lot description had yet to be published. The last one of these (of the three made) that came up for sale failed to meet its reserve in 2005 at $3.5 million. Expect more. Click here for more info and here for more from RM at Villa Erba.
When new, the Ferrari 375 was the top dog among Ferraris with the 4.5-liter Lampredi V-12 making a potent 340 horsepower. It was also capable of a speeds in excess of 170 mph – insanity in 1953. This car was shipped new to Argentina where it quickly built a reputation for speed and success. It’s impressive competition history includes:
1955 Buenos Aires 1000 km – 2nd (with Cesar Rivero and Raul Najurieta)
1955 Argentina Sports Car Championship – 1st (with Najurieta)
1956 500 Miles of Argentina – 1st (with Najurieta)
The car suffered a few serious crashes in its lifetime, but it is a race car, and repairs from racing are kind of expected. The last serious accident was in 1957 and it’s racing career ended. An American V8 was then installed in the car and it was used on the street until it was eventually parked and forgotten.
In 1983, the car was discovered again in Montevideo, Uruguay. It was shipped to Italy and restored under the ownership of Count Vittorio Zanon di Valgiurata between 1984 and 1986. A correct 375 MM engine was found and put into the car – although it is not the engine it came with from the factory. Since its restoration, it has changed hands a number of times and has enjoyed a career of historic racing – including the Monterey Historics and Mille Miglia Storica.
Only 15 Ferrari 375 MMs were built and they are valuable. This one has known (and successful) competition and ownership history. It is simply a killer Ferrari and won worth it’s weight in gold. The pre-sale estimate is (converted to USD) $4,300,000-$5,300,000. Good luck bidding.
For the complete catalog description, click here and for more from RM in Monaco, click here.