Auctions

One of five Ferrari 288 GTO Evoluziones is for sale

by Nik Berg
28 September 2022 2 min read
One of five Ferrari 288 GTO Evoluziones is for sale
Photos: RM Sotheby's

Group B was the 1980s road and rally formula that just kept giving. Without Group B there’d have been no Audi Sport Quattro, no Lancia 037, no Porsche 959, no Peugeot 205 T16, and certainly no Ferrari 288 Gran Turismo Omologato.

The rules required car makers to build at least 200 homologation specials to compete, and Ferrari put together a total of 272, 288 GTOs between 1984 and 1987, based loosely on the 308. On top of this manufacturers were permitted to assemble a further 20 Evolution models where engineers were given even more free rein.

By the time Group B was axed at the end of 1986 however, Ferrari had only built five examples of the GTO Evoluzione – sealing its status as one of the ultimate collector Ferraris.

Distinguishing the Evoluzione from the standard 288 GTO is a wide body formed from kevlar and fibreglass, with a carbon fibre rear wing, to shed weight to 940kg. Under the vented plexiglass rear window sits a 2.8-litre twin-turbo V8, as used in the regular GTO, but with bigger turbos to boost power from 400bhp to 650bhp. Top speed is said to be 229mph – faster even than the Ferrari F40 that followed in 1987. And needless to say, much about the Evoluzione influenced thinking behind the F40.

For sale at RM Sotheby’s is chassis number 79888, which was first sold to Belgian racer Jean “Beurlys” Blaton in 1987 and has had several owners since, including Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll. It has recently had a service and fresh coat of paint that set the current owner back £119,000.

Records are surely about to tumble when this 288 GTO Evoluzione goes to auction in Germany on October 19-21. As one of only three of the five cars in private hands it’s one of the rarest prancing horses on the planet, and will surely eclipse the $4.4 million (£4.1m) achieved by a ‘regular’ 288 GTO at RM Sotheby’s sale during Monterey Car Week. Just how high will the bids fly?

Read more

A Ferrari F40 turns even F1 champions into excitable kids
Ferrari 296 GTB review: Plug, play and pray
Prancing unicorns: 12 one-off cars Ferrari created for collectors

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