FERRARI 250GT LUSSO REVIEW

Of all Ferrari's postwar body styles, Pininfarina's enduring Scaglietti-built design for the 250GT Berlinetta Lusso is surely one of the most pure and elegant.

The prototype Lusso was shown at the October 1962 Paris Salon where it received a rapturous reception. Its chassis was derived from that of the competition GTO but shared the short 94.5 inch / 2400mm wheelbase of the preceding Berlinetta and Spider models. The front suspension was by forged steel wishbones, coil springs and Koni telescopic dampers, the rear axle located with twin radius arms and semi-elliptical leaf springs on each side. A Watts linkage pivoted on the rear of the differential housing and by means of two arms prevented the axle from moving sideways. The rear dampers were encompassed by light springs which also assisted the system. Servo assisted disc brakes and Borrani wire wheels completed the running gear. The 3-litre V12 engine specification included a single overhead camshaft for each cylinder bank and delivered over 240bhp at a silken 7,500 rpm, endowing this peerless beauty with superb performance to match its outstandng road-holding. As the 'Lusso' designation implies, it was a SWB developed specifically for road use with a high level of trim and appointment. For many people, the Lusso is the ultimate road Ferrari since it has all the dynamics of the 250GT SWB, but with a Pininfarina body which some would argue is the maestro's finest work. Apart from the flow of the lines, ending in a slight lip and flat tail panel, the Kamm tail - after the aerodynamic theories of the German scientist, Dr Wunibald Kamm - recalls the Ferrari 250 GTO. The thin pillars allowed the expanse of glass to be an essential part of the overall look. Not only is the shape breathtaking, even by Pininfarina standards, but the detailing is arguably the finest ever created by the studio.

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