A one-off Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona shooting brake will cross the auction block at Gooding & Co’s Monterey sale this weekend.
Florida architect and real estate developer Bob Gittleman approached Philadelphia dealer Chinetti Motors in the early 1970s. He was interested in the Daytona, but wanted something a bit different and liked shooting brakes. Dealership owner Luigi Chinetti Jr. was a gifted stylist and Gittleman commissioned him to design the car.
British coachbuilder Panther Westwinds was engaged to build the car and it was a spectacular creation. So comprehensive was the transformation that only the windshield surround and A-pillars were left untouched.
From the front, it’s recognizably a Daytona, but not quite as we know it. The nosecone is subtly elongated and a rectangular grille with horizontal bars sits below the bumper. An unusual full-width reflector is added above the bumper, too.
At the rear, though, it is radically different. From a Daytona and from conventional shooting brakes with an extended roof and tailgate. Instead, it features a brutally blunt ‘Kamm’ tail with a fixed glass panel; the luggage bay is accessed through huge, curved, glass panels on both sides that lift up gullwing-style.
The interior is totally unlike any other Daytona, too, trimmed with wood veneers and featuring a forest of gauges - including the speedometer and tachomteter - on the center console.
A second-hand, 1972 Daytona was used for the conversion, which more than doubled the cost of the car. It was delivered in early 1976, nearly three years after Gittleman visited Chinetti.
Gittlemann kept the car until the 1980s, since when it has passed through a number of owners and been shown at all the best events - I saw it myself at the Goodwood Festival of Speed a few years ago. It was recently listed on the website of high-end London dealer/broker Hexagon Classics, but clearly failed to sell. It now heads to auction with an estimate of $750,000 to $1 million.
It’s worth noting that estimate is about the same as would be put on a good, standard Daytona. Which may seem strange for a car that is completely unique. But that very uniqueness counts against it when Ferrari collectors value factory originality above all else.
And it is the very definition of an acquired taste.