Monaco

10 May 2014

Lot 160

1997 Ferrari F50

To be auctioned on Saturday, May 10, 2014

Sold for €907.200

  • Chassis no. ZFFTA46B000106865
  • Production no. 274/349
History is important to us, and all lots offered are fully researched. All corresponding information and accessories, from certificates to tool kits, stays with the lots we sell. All of this is held at our library on site, under the Access the Knowledge banner, so please visit us there or contact us before the auction if you require further information.


520 bhp, 4,698 cc V-12 engine with Bosch Motronic 2.7 engine management, six-speed manual transmission, four-wheel independent suspension with coil springs and unequal length wishbones, and four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes. Wheelbase: 2,580 mm

  • Single ownership and 8,900 kilometres from new
  • Ferrari’s iconic 50th anniversary supercar; one of 349 produced
  • Ferrari Classiche certified
  • Complete with all factory books and a hardtop and soft-top


Ferrari’s F50 was the culmination of four years of development and fifty years of success in motorsport, and its goal was to offer customers an experience as close to an F1 car as possible, within the familiarity of a road-legal platform. It was presented to the public for the first time at the 63rd annual Geneva Motor Show, with Luca di Montezemolo, Piero Lardi Ferrari, Sergio Pininfarina, and Niki Lauda all on hand at the unveiling, illustrating the monumental importance of this new model to the history of Ferrari.



Where the 288 GTO and the F40 were powered by twin-turbocharged V-8 engines, the F50 would be graced with a 4.7-litre normally aspirated V-12 with five valves per cylinder, which was a first for a road going Ferrari V-12. It was derived directly from the engine that Ferrari used in the 1990 Formula One season, and it produced 520 horsepower at an eardrum-shattering 8,000 rpm, but the 436-pound engine itself was capable of reaching over 10,000 rpm. The six-speed longitudinal gearbox, completed with a limited-slip differential, was fitted behind the engine, between which was mounted the oil tank for the dry-sump engine lubrication system, which was all reminiscent of the layout used in Ferrari’s contemporary Formula One cars.



Exacting attention to detail was given to the car’s chassis, which was made entirely of Cytec aerospace carbon fibre and tipped the scales at just 225 pounds. The F50’s rubber bladder fuel tank was housed within the chassis, behind the driver and in front of the engine, which was another innovation inspired from the aircraft industry. Another Ferrari first was that the engine/gearbox/differential assembly acted as a load-bearing structure. Massive drilled and ventilated disc brakes were fitted, and Brembo supplied the four-piston brake callipers. Ferrari found that the brakes were so good that ABS was deemed unnecessary.



The interior of the F50 featured few creature comforts, as Ferrari believed there should be nothing to distract the driver from the task at hand: driving. The instrument panel featured a tachometer and speedometer, as well as fuel, oil, and water temperature and oil pressure gauges, which were all controlled by a microcomputer and displayed to the driver by LCD. The throttle, brake, and clutch pedals were all fully adjustable and drilled to maximise weight reduction. The gated gearshift was traditional Ferrari, and in the interest of weight, even the gear knob and lever were made of lightweight composite materials.



All of this state-of-the-art engineering meant that the F50 had incredible performance figures. Its top speed was purportedly 325 km/h, and the 0–100 km/h dash required just 3.7 seconds. Keeping one’s foot on the accelerator pedal would bring the F50 to a standing mile time of 30.3 seconds. However, all this performance wouldn’t be available to every person with the appropriate funds to purchase Ferrari’s newest supercar, as just 349 examples would be made, one less than what Montezemolo believed the market demanded and just over a quarter of total F40 production.



Not only was ownership of an F50 a privilege, it was also an honour, as the 349 examples produced would be destined for the garages of Ferrari’s best customers. Each owner received a document signed by Montezemolo, which attested to the authenticity of the car, and a letter inviting the owner to the Ferrari factory upon the production of the 349th example, to celebrate this monumental engineering achievement.



The 1997 model presented here is the 274th F50 produced. This example was delivered new to its home country of Italy and has remained with its first owner its entire life. It has travelled under 9,000 kilometres from new and retains all of its original books and tools. It has also been Classiche certified, ensuring that this splendid F50 is exactly as it was when it left the factory in 1997 and it has never had any accident damage. This example, wearing Rossa Corsa paint with a black and red interior, the quintessential colour combination for an F50, is fully capable of whatever the owner asks of it.



The Ferrari F50 is without a doubt the most iconic Ferrari of the 1990s. It was the pinnacle of Ferrari road-car development and evolution, and it also symbolises the start of Ferrari’s return to Formula One dominance. The F50 allowed Ferrari’s most valued customers to experience both the similar levels of performance and exhilaration that Ferrari’s own Formula One drivers experience whilst rocketing down the main strait at Monza or navigating the grand hotel hairpin at Monaco. No collection of Ferraris is complete without an F50, and with Ferrari Classiche certification and single ownership from new, this example warrants serious consideration.






Moteur V-12, 4 698 cm3, 520 ch, gestion électronique Bosch Motronic 2.7, boîte manuelle six rapports, quatre roues indépendantes par triangles inégaux et ressorts hélicoïdaux, freins hydrauliques à disque sur les quatre roues. Empattement: 2 580 mm.



  • Un seul propriétaire et 8 900 km d'origine
  • Supercar Ferrari emblématique du 50e anniversaire ; 349 exemplaires produits
  • Certificat Ferrari Classiche
  • Complète avec ses manuels d'usine, capote et son hard-top




La Ferrari F50 correspondait à l'apogée de quatre ans de développement et de 50 ans de succès en sport automobile, et son objectif était de proposer aux clients des sensations aussi proches que possible de la Formule 1, sur une plateforme utilisable sur route. Elle était présentée pour la première fois au public lors du 63e Salon de Genève, en présence de Luca di Montezemolo, Piero Lardi Ferrari, Sergio Pininfarina et Niki Lauda, ce qui illustrait l'importance majeure de ce nouveau modèle dans l'histoire de la marque.



Alors que les 288 GTO et F40 étaient équipées d'un moteur V8 double turbo, la F50 bénéficiait d'un V-12 atmosphérique doté de cinq soupapes par cylindres, une première pour une Ferrari V-12 de route. Ce moteur de 198 kg était directement issu de celui utilisé par Ferrari à l'occasion de la saison de Formule 1 de 1990, et il développait 520 ch à 8 000 tr/mn dans un bruit de tonnerre, tout en étant capable d'atteindre 10 000 tr/mn. La boîte six rapports longitudinale, complétée d'un différentiel autobloquant, était placée derrière le moteur, à côté du réservoir d'huile utilisé pour le système de lubrification par carter sec, l'ensemble constituant une réminiscence de la configuration utilisée sur les Ferrari de Formule 1 contemporaines.



Le châssis bénéficiait d'une attention particulière : il était entièrement formé en fibre de carbone Cytec aéronautique, et ne pesait que 102 kg. Le réservoir de carburant en caoutchouc souple était logé dans le châssis, derrière le pilote et devant le moteur, ce qui représentait une autre innovation inspirée des techniques aéronautiques. De plus, encore une première pour une Ferrari de route, l'ensemble moteur/boîte/transmission faisait office de structure porteuse. La voiture recevait d'énormes disques ventilés et perforés, et Brembo fournissait les étriers quatre pistons. Ferrari considérait que les freins étaient d'une qualité telle que l'ABS n'était pas nécessaire.



L'habitacle de la F50 ne présentait aucun élément de confort superflu, Ferrari considérant que rien ne devait distraire le conducteur de sa tâche : piloter la voiture. Le tableau de bord comportait compteur de vitesses et compte-tours, ainsi qu'une jauge de réservoir d'essence, un thermomètre d'eau et d'huile et une jauge de pression d'huile, tous contrôlés par un micro-ordinateur et affichés sur un écran LCD à cristaux liquides. Les pédales d'accélérateur, de frein et d'embrayage étaient entièrement réglables, et percées pour gagner le maximum de poids. La grille de boîte répondait à la tradition Ferrari et, aussi dans un souci de gain de poids, le pommeau était en matériau composite.



Grâce à cette technique de pointe, la F50 présentait des performances incroyables. Elle atteignait 325 km/h, passait de 0 à 100 km/h en juste 3,7 secondes et couvrait le mile (1,6 km) départ arrêté en 30,3 secondes. Mais ces performances n'étaient pas à la portée de tous ceux qui avaient les moyens de s'offrir la dernière supercar de Ferrari, car la production restait limitée à 349 exemplaires, un de moins que la demande du marché telle que l'avait estimée Montezemolo, soit un peu plus d'un quart de la production totale de F40.



Ainsi, non seulement posséder une F50 était un privilège, mais c'était aussi un honneur car les 349 exemplaires n'étaient destinés qu'aux meilleurs clients Ferrari. Chacun d'eux recevait un document signé de la main de Montezemolo, attestant de l'authenticité de la voiture, ainsi qu'une invitation à se rendre à l'usine lors de la production du 349e exemplaire, pour rendre hommage à la véritable prouesse technologique que constituait cette voiture.



Le modèle 1997 proposé ici correspond à la 274e F50 produite. Cet exemplaire a été livré neuf dans son pays natal, l'Italie, et il est resté toute son existence entre les mains de son premier propriétaire. Il a parcouru 9 000 km depuis l'origine et comporte encore tous ses manuels et outils d'origine. Il est accompagné d'un certificat de Ferrari Classiche, assurant que cette splendide F50 est conforme à ce qu'elle était lors de sa sortie d'usine en 1997 et qu'elle n'a jamais été endommagée dans un accident. Cet exemplaire, de teinte Rossa Corsa avec intérieur noir et rouge—la combinaison de couleurs la plus symbolique pour une F50—est capable de répondre à tous les souhaits du propriétaire.



La Ferrari F50 est sans aucun doute la plus emblématique des Ferrari des années 1990. Elle représentait le summum du développement des Ferrari de route, et elle symbolisait aussi la domination retrouvée de Ferrari en Formule 1. La F50 a permis aux meilleurs clients de la marque de connaître le même niveau de sensations grisantes qu'un pilote de monoplace Ferrari de F 1 quand il avale la ligne droite du circuit de Monza ou qu'il négocie le virage du casino, à Monaco. Aucune collection de Ferrari ne saurait être complète sans une F50. Avec sa certification Ferrari Classiche et son unique propriétaire depuis l'origine, cet exemplaire mérite une sérieuse considération.

Alain Squindo


Detroit, Michigan

Alain Squindo joined RM Auctions in 2007, after graduating from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., with a degree in History. R... read more

Alex Classick

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Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a senior car specialist, after more than a decade in the collector car hobby... read more

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Jack Boxstrom joined RM Auctions in late-1996 to assist with the recently acquired, and subsequently record-breaking, auction in Monte... read more

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United Kingdom

Max Girardo started his career in the vintage automobile industry in 1998, joining Brooks Auctioneers (now Bonhams) as a car specialis... read more

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As one of the three founding partners of RM Auctions, Mike Fairbairn has a longstanding interest in the classic car industry. Graduati... read more

Peter Wallman

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United Kingdom

Peter Wallman joined RM Europe in 2007, following nearly two decades in the international advertising industry, read more

Rob Myers

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Ontario, Canada

As chairman and founder of the RM Group of Companies, Rob Myers’s entire career has been devoted to the classic car industry. Ro... read more

Shelby Myers

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California, USA

Shelby Myers literally grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to w... read more

Vinnie Mandzak

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Vinnie Mandzak joined RM Auctions’ California office in 2012 as a car specialist, following more than 30 years’ experience... read more