If you think of a Ferrari 250 GT, most associations that come to mind will likely involve events such as the Pebble Beach concours and fancy auctions where these pristine, gleaming vintage ponies command millions of dollars. Or, maybe, vintage tours and races across the globe, where the legendary 3-liter V12 can sing freely and owners and spectators alike can enjoy the sight of these cars being used as Enzo intended.
And then there’s this 250 GT, a 1962 Series II Pinin Farina Cabriolet (s/n 2307GT), the only such car currently living in South Africa. As I walk around the Ferrari, its history is immediately visible: There are several dings and dents in the sheet metal, while the paintwork is excessively cracked behind the cabin.
“It stood outside, sometimes partially covered, from around 1983 until we bought it around four years ago,” says Russell Haselau, who maintains the Ferrari for its current owner. “You’ll notice the two circular stains above the front bumper. At some point in the car’s past, reflectors were fitted here. The car spent some time in Zimbabwe, where front reflectors had to be fitted according to local legislation.”
It gets worse. Not only had the Ferrari essentially been abandoned to the elements, but the previous owner had embarked on his own half-hearted restoration prior to his death. “The car was about 75-percent stripped [when purchased from his estate],” Haselau continues. “As we thoroughly searched through the garage, several boxes and shelves, however, we fortunately found almost every part.”
That included the car’s original ashtray. It was found on the previous owner’s veranda—where he used it as an ashtray! Needless to say, that rare item, bearing the crossed flags of Ferrari and Pinin Farina, has been returned to its proper place between s/n 2307’s seats.