The Legendary Ford GT40: A Rare Road-Legal Example Up for Auction in 2024
The Ford GT40 is undeniably one of the most iconic race cars in automotive history. With its legendary story immortalized on the big screen in the film “Ford v Ferrari,” this masterpiece has achieved cult status among car enthusiasts. Now, for those who have dreamed of owning this piece of automotive history, there is a unique opportunity. Mecum Auctions will be offering one of only 30 rare road-legal examples of the GT40 for sale at its highly anticipated 2024 auction in Kissimmee, Florida, set to run from January 2 through 14.
What makes this particular GT40 even more intriguing is the fact that it has undergone a restoration by RUF, a renowned company best known for its exceptional work with Porsche vehicles. This collaboration between Ford and RUF adds an extra layer of allure to this already desirable machine. The restoration carried out by RUF ensures that this GT40 is in pristine condition, impeccably showcasing its timeless design and engineering excellence.
As a road-going version of the Mark 1 GT40, this car boasts a smoother body compared to later racing iterations. Notable differences include the absence of extra intakes on the roof and the upper side scoops behind the side windows. Painted in a captivating dark blue hue, this GT40 pays homage to the classic Gulf Blue paint scheme of its racing counterpart, creating a visual spectacle that captivates the eyes without directly copying the iconic shade.
The auction listing proudly mentions the restoration by RUF, supported by photo documentation that highlights the meticulous attention to detail and craftsmanship involved. What makes it even more intriguing is RUF’s close association with Porsche, particularly due to their work on iconic models like the CTR Yellowbird. When reached for comments, a spokesperson for RUF revealed, “[RUF] did indeed restore that GT40 back in 1996 for a special client of theirs. In fact, they restored all his cars. Though it is pretty rare, RUF is able to restore cars outside of the Porsche realm if a client requests.”
Stepping inside, the interior of this GT40 exudes racing heritage and functionality. The instrument layout is reminiscent of a race car, with the tachometer placed directly behind the steering wheel for easy visibility during intense competition. Surrounding the tachometer, the gauges for oil pressure and water temperature provide crucial information to ensure optimal performance. Curiously, the speedometer is positioned on the left side rather than the center, somewhat deviating from convention.
Powering this exceptional machine is a Ford 289-cubic-inch V8 engine, renowned for its potent performance. The engine bay itself is a sight to behold, with a stunning intake featuring two rows of shining velocity stacks atop the Weber carburetors. The black exhaust pipes coil around the powerplant like a mesmerizing nest of snakes, hinting at the power that lies beneath the GT40’s sleek exterior. Mated to this impressive engine is a five-speed manual transmission, allowing drivers to fully experience the car’s raw power and exhilarating performance.
This particular GT40 has an intriguing history, as the previous owner cherished it for nearly 30 years. At one point, it belonged to Umberto Maglioli, a notable racing driver who even competed for the Scuderia Ferrari Formula One team in the 1950s. This adds a layer of provenance to an already iconic car, making it an even more enticing acquisition for collectors and enthusiasts alike.
On the exterior, its stunning dark blue paintwork remains a testament to the car’s timeless appeal, ensuring that it turns heads wherever it goes. The flawless restoration by RUF ensures that every detail is immaculate, allowing this GT40 to shine in all its glory.
This GT40 boasts an impressively low mileage of only 13,442 miles, further enhancing its desirability and rarity. Mecum Auctions is including a copy of the original build sheet with the vehicle, providing an additional historical connection to this exceptional machine.
As the anticipation builds for the 2024 Mecum auction in Kissimmee, Florida, collectors and enthusiasts eagerly await the chance to own this rare road-legal GT40. With its rich history, breathtaking design, and exceptional restoration by RUF, this vehicle represents the pinnacle of automotive excellence. The hammer falling at the auction will not only mark the transfer of ownership but also determine the price tag attached to this iconic race car.
In conclusion, the Ford GT40 continues to be a symbol of automotive greatness and an embodiment of racing heritage. This rare road-legal GT40, enhanced by a restoration by RUF, presents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own a true automotive legend. With its captivating design, impressive performance, and unique history, this GT40 encapsulates the spirit of automotive enthusiasts worldwide. The upcoming Mecum auction in 2024 will undoubtedly be a thrilling event and a defining moment for both the seller and the fortunate buyer, who will embark on a journey with a piece of automotive history that is destined to be cherished for generations to come.