September 3-4 - Selling on Saturday
CHASSIS NO: ZFFJA09B000040897
Just 5,000 miles from new
Ferrari 12-cylinder power
Owned by Bill DeCarr, of George Barris’ circle, for nearly 30 years
Impeccably preserved with care and servicing
Accompanied by original spare and extensive documentation
5.0-litre, flat 12-cylinder, mid-engine, Bosch K-Jetronic CIS fuel injection, rear-wheel drive, five-speed manual gearbox, vented disc brakes; wheelbase: 98.4”
Ferrari’s Berlinetta Boxer marked a dramatic departure for the marque in terms of mechanics as well as styling. The BB was the first badge-wearing, consumer market Ferrari with a mid-engine placement. In terms of styling, the crisp and modern wedge aesthetic would come to define the look of sports cars for more two decades thereafter. Although the Dino, at only six cylinders, had been delivering a mid-engine configuration under the Ferrari umbrella since 1956, the Berlinetta Boxer marked the first time Enzo gave in and allowed one of his road-going, twelve-cylinder, fire-breathing prancing horses to leave the factory with a rear-engine. The BB had tough shoes to fill as the popular Daytona’s successor, but its fierce angular styling would prove to influence the look of Ferrari for the next 25 years. In fact, Pininfarina’s Leonardo Fioravanti designed the Daytona, the BB and the Testarossa, and consequently remains among the greatest automobile designers in the history of the combustion engine.
The first generation Berlinetta Boxer debuted at the Turin Motor Show in 1971 and was produced until 1976 when a second-generation BB, the 512, was released. The 512, aptly named for its 5-litre, 12-cylinder engine, delivered updates including increased compression ratio, more torque, better maneuverability with wider rear tires and dry sump, which maintained lubrication even in aggressive cornering. External revisions boasted a visually striking NACA duct to assist in exhaust cooling, a chin spoiler, twin taillights instead of triple, new white running lights in the grille, as well as red rear fog lights. In 1981, while North America was cracking down on emissions with near religious fervor, the last and most advanced rendition of the 512 was released as the BBi; the “i” stood for the Bosch K-Jetronic CIS fuel injection, which replaced the former model’s carburetors. Only 1,007 examples of the 512 BBi were produced and many Ferrari aficianados feel this was the last truly handcrafted model that Ferrari would make. The BB bridged the gap between bespoke, old-world Ferrari craftsmanship and the modern, angular look and rear-engine power that would come to dominate through the ‘80s and into the ‘90s.
This peerless offering, from the final year of BBi production, Chassis Number ZFFJA09B000040897, boasts its own storied history. Brought to North American shores in its production year, this 1984 512 BBi was purchased by the legendary Southern Californian customizer Bill DeCarr. DeCarr was Kustom King George Barris’s lauded bodywork genius who was principally responsible for the iconic Aztec among myriad other custom builds. He purchased the BBi and had it imported to the U.S.; upon arrival Mr. DeCarr mixed his own spectacular red paint and made this car his own. To say that this car was pampered would be a vast understatement. With just over 5,000 original miles, this numbers matching BBi is undoubtedly one of the most pristine examples to come to market. With DeCarr’s signature paint and the original, near flawless knock-off alloy wheels, this razor-sharp angular beauty is as timeless as it is stylish. Inside, rich black Ferrari leather dresses an incredibly well-kept and surprisingly luxe cabin.
With ridiculously low mileage, matching numbers, and a history of ownership from the celebrated Bill DeCarr, this BBi is at the apex of Ferrari 512s. Impeccably preserved and accompanied by its spare tire, mileage certification and ample documentation, this one-of-a-kind Bill DeCarr Ferrari 512 BBi is ready for a Concours debut or a home in any sports car collection.
Text and image courtesy of Worldwide Auctioneers