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Pull out your cheque book: Fangio’s Ferrari could be yours

26 October, 2015

At Sotheby’s upcoming New York Driven by Disruption auction (December 10), a car that has been hailed as something of a Holy Grail for car collectors will be offered for sale — the 1956 Ferrari 290 MM (chassis #0626) once raced by none other than five-time F1 world champion Juan Manuel Fangio. Sotheby’s say that this Ferrari is undoubtedly one of the greatest, most original, and most valuable cars ever offered at public auction.

Specially built by the Ferrari factory for Fangio to drive in the 1956 Mille Miglia, Fangio raced in that 1000-mile event single-handedly, finishing an impressive fourth overall. Painted in a unique factory Argentinian colour scheme, the car featured a totally new 3.5-litre V12 engine, and was one of only four 290 MMs to be built.

Furthermore, it was one of the first Ferraris raced in Europe by Phil Hill, and also heralded the beginning of Wolfgang von Trips’ Ferrari-driving career. It was also piloted to victory in the 1957 Buenos Aires 1000km race by Eugenio Castellotti, Luigi Musso, and Masten Gregory. During its illustrious career, ‘0626’ was also campaigned by other legendary names including Alfonso de Portago, Peter Collins, Olivier Gendebien, and Joakim Bonnier.

The car arrived in the US in 1957, and continued to be raced up until 1964. Following the end of its racing career, 0626 remained in the US before being acquired by the Mas du Clos collection, where it remained for almost 34 years. Ferrari Classiche–certified, this car remains the best of all the four examples built, retaining its original chassis, matching-numbers engine, gearbox, and body. 

Driven by some of the greatest drivers of the 1950s, and built for possibly the greatest driver in history, this car’s originality, coupled with its extraordinary provenance and history, means that this Ferrari is one of the most desirable and valuable cars to ever come to the open market.

The Jowett Jupiter turns 70

John Ball has always enjoyed tinkering with old boats and cars. He’s old enough to think having gearbox parts on newspaper on the floor of his bedroom, while the relevant car sat waiting on nail boxes, was a normal part of growing up. His passion has always tended towards old British bangers. He reckons he’s fortunate not to have got caught up in the American muscle scene.
John’s love affair with this Jupiter started in December 2015 when, with some time on his hands during a Christchurch trip, he searched online for ‘cars, before 1970 and in Christchurch’.

A passion for classics and customs

In the highly competitive field of New Zealand classic and custom restorations, reputations are won or lost on the ability to maintain consistently high standards of workmanship. A company managing to achieve this is D A Panel beating Ltd, of Rangiora near Christchurch. Is your classic or custom car restoration stalled, or in need of a refresh, or perhaps you are looking for experts to rebuild that recent import project out of Europe or the ‘States?