Chassis number 0405 GT is a late-production Europa GT which originally incorporated the sought-after coil-spring front suspension, which replaced the transverse leaf-spring arrangement during its limited production run.
Carrozzeria Pinin Farina of Torino was tasked with creating the body for this vehicle in the Summer of 1955. It was virtually identical to the Pinin Farina-bodied 375 Americas and similar in many ways to the earliest Tour de France berlinettas. Upon completion, it was finished in a light gray known as Grigio Max Meyer and upholstered in orange Connolly hides. The car left the factory on August 2nd of 1955 and was equipped with Marchal lamps and white-lettered Englebert tires.
0405 GT was displayed at the 42nd Annual Paris Motor Show in mid-October on the show stand of French Ferrari importer Paul Vallee. After the show, the car returned to Modena. On December 5th, the car was sold to its first owner S.A.I.P.A. for the price of 3,000,000 Italian Lire. During its early years, it was registered in Modena.
By late 1956, the Europa GT had been exported to the United States and into the care of David Leopold of New York. Unfortunately, the cooling system had no anti-freeze and endured a session of freezing weather that cracked the original cylinder heads. This problem was fixed with a new Type 128 cylinder head featuring the improved siamesed intakeports.
A short time later, the car was sold to Bendix engineer Giltner Knudson. After Mr. Knudson moved to California in the early 1960s, he brought the former Paris show car with him. In 1964, he advertised the car for sale in the pages of Road & Track magazine.
Charles Betz became the vehicle's next owner. M0.r Betz retained the car for several years and displayed it at the 1966 Vista del Mar Concours in Los Angeles. The car was traded in 1967 for a 300 SL Roadster, only to take it back as part of a trade a few years and several owners later.
By the mid-1970s, the car was in Stamping Grounds, Kentucky, where it was in the care of Rudd Brown. In August 1975, Thomas Churchill of Yellow Springs, Ohio, acquired the car, and during the 1980s, Paul Hackman of Columbus is recorded as the owner. At some point while it in the Midwest, the original engine was replaced with a later outside-plug unit sourced from 1585 GT, a 1959 PF Coupe.
Paul Forbes returned the Ferrari to California during the 1990s and stored it in Costa Mesa for many years. In 1999, the Ferrari was sold to Stephen Block, a Bay Area enthusiast who planned to restore it. A short time after acquiring the car, Mr. Block found one of the two alloy-bodied Europa GTs, 0389 GT, and purchased it to restore.
The next owner was Sam Mann, who entrusted Rudi Konizcek of Vancouver, British Columbia, to perform a thorough cosmetic restoration. The car was stripped to bare metal and was found to be in excellent condition throughout. The car was finished in Mercedes-Benz dark blue (DB 904) and upholstered in rich tan leather. Original features such as the factory-supplied trunk carpeting were retained wherever possible.
The car currently displays 91,311 kilometers, a figure that is believed to represent the original mileage from new. The engine is a 60-degree V12 engine fitted with Three Weber Twin-Choke carburetors offering 240 horsepower. There is a four-speed manual gearbox and four-wheel drum brakes.
In 2012, this car was offered for sale at the Gooding & Company auction held in Scottsdale, Arizona. It had a pre-auction estimated value of $750,000 - $900,000. As bidding came to a close, the car had been sold for the sum of $797,500 inclusive of buyer's premium.Also photographed at :
This 1955 Ferrari Europa GT #0405 was displayed at the 42nd Paris Motor Show by French Ferrari Importer Paul Vallee. It is one of 34 GTs produced and is a late production car with the highly sought after coil spring front suspension. #0405 was first registered in Modena and has a full ownership history.
It was imported to the United States in 1956 and passed through several well-known owners including Bendix engineer Giltner Knudson and also Charles Betz and Fred Peters who have owned the car on several occasions.
Sam Mann acquired #0405 in the early 2000s and had a full restoration performed by Rudi Konizcek of Vancouver British Columbia. The car still retains its original glass and trunk carpet.
The odometer currently displays 91,000 km which is believed to represent the original mileage from new.