Ferrari 857

1955 Ferrari 857 Sport

Offered by Gooding & Company | Monterey, California | August 19, 2012

The Ferrari 857 was born out of a need for an improved Ferrari road-racing car – that is, something to do battle with the new Mercedes 300 SLRs. The 750 Monza and 500 Testa Rossa had done their jobs, but in the House of the Prancing Horse, “doing one’s job” probably lies somewhere well below “total domination” on il Commendatore’s list of cherished qualities.

So, for 1955, Ferrari took a 750 Monza chassis and stuffed under the hood a new, larger, version of the Lampedri straight-four, now displacing 3.5-ish liters, a 421cc improvement. Power jumped from about 260 to 290, which looked great on paper – unfortunately, the car was not the power-house it was intended to be. Over the next two years, however, the Monza line would produce some stellar, race-winning cars.

This particular car, chassis 588M, was the last of the four 857s built. It is the only car with this particular Scaglietti-designed body that includes a fin behind the driver. The car was entered by the Scuderia in a single race, where it was rolled in practice by Olivier Gendenbien. After that, it was repaired and sent to America where, in the hands of privateers, it competed in various road races across the country with drivers such as Carroll Shelby, Masten Gregory and Richie Ginther.

Once its racing life had concluded, the car was purchased by Andy Warhol and driven around New York by his agent. It changed hands several times after that, being restored in 2011. With a pre-sale estimate of $5-$7 million, this might be the cheapest way to get  your hands on something that you can connect to Andy Warhol. For the complete lot description, click here. For more from Gooding in California, click here.

Update: Sold $6,270,000.

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