1952 Ferrari Barchetta Stops By Jay Leno's Garage
Before the bitter rivalry between Ford Motor Company and Ferrari in the 1960s (which led to the creation of the dominating Ford GT40), the two companies had actually been in talks of a merger during the preceding decade. During this time, Enzo Ferrari sent Henry Ford II a special gift, the one-off Ferrari Barchetta you see above. This dark green Ferrari now resides at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, and it recently stopped by for a visit to Jay Leno’s Garage.
Created especially for Henry Ford II, this 1952 Ferrari Barchetta started life as a 212 Barchetta but it features a 2.7-liter V-12 racing engine as well as more Americanized look with the white-wall tires. Speaking of the tires, aside from a tire swap in 1954, this car is all original and is exactly the way it was when first given Henry Ford II.
PHOTOS: 1952 Ferrari 212 Touring Barchetta
As unique as this car is, Henry Ford II’s 1952 Ferrari Barchetta might be even more significant for two reasons: Petersen’s curator says that this might be the very first left-hand drive Ferrari ever made and it also helped shape the styling of the 1955 Ford Thunderbird.
PHOTOS: 1955 Ford Thunderbird
Like most episodes of JLG, Leno wraps up by taking this priceless piece of automotive history out for a spin on public streets. Hearing this car at full rev is simply amazing, and we're sure it sounds even better in real life. Once again, Leno has left us green with envy.