It’s amazing to think that the Ferrari Dino was disowned by its maker, sold without any references to the prancing horse, because it packed a mere six cylinders.
One of the most desirable Ferraris ever made, thanks to its picture perfect shape, the 206GT (and later the 246GT) was the first baby Ferrari after a series of front-engined V12 cars.
The car went on to sell brilliantly, with 2487 GTs and 1274 GTSs produced, around a fifth of which came to the UK. Their desirability has led to rocketing values with the Daytona-seated, wide-arched and wheeled ‘chairs and flairs spec most desirable and costly.
If you’re the financial position to afford a Ferrari Dino your first priority is to make sure the body is healthy and the second is to check the condition of the engine. These are the most expensive areas to fix and the ones which give problems the most frequently. Make sure the car is as good underneath as it is on top – it’s easy to have a great looking body but a rotten (and expensive to repair) chassis.
Remove the panel inside the rear wheelarch and look up the sills past the fuel tank – if it’s been repaired well here (and it’s unlikely to be untouched) it’ll be good throughout. Make sure you get a proper inspection by somebody who knows the cars well – the price of an inspection will easily be recouped if the car needs work, which it probably will do.
Although it’s possible to get your fingers burned buying a Dino, there are plenty of superbly restored cars out there thanks to the boom two decades ago that saw values rise briefly into the stratosphere. It used to be the case that cars had been thrashed and serviced infrequently – now the opposite is true as owners pamper them and rarely give them any exercise.
Finally, don’t believe any claims of low mileage as speedos are easy to disconnect and frequently are. The most important thing is to get an inspection and look at any history file or photos of work done and to buy on condition rather than mileage.