In the market for a second-hand Ferrari? The 308 could be just the ticket. Maranello built over 13,000 of them over the course of a decade’s worth of production, and by now they’ve reached a (relatively) affordable price point. But this one is more special than the rest, and will likely sell for much more, too – not because it has different specs, but because of its owner.
This 1978 308 GTS is similar to the one that featured in Magnum, PI, but was actually the daily driver of the legendary Gilles Villeneuve. The French-Canadian driver debuted with the Scuderia in 1977, and Ferrari revealed the 308 GTS at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show. So as a perk for his signing, Enzo gave him one to use.
Widely regarded as one of the best drivers in the history of the sport, Gilles was sadly killed on an accident on the track before he had the chance to fully capitalize on his capabilities. So instead of becoming a world champion as his (arguably less talented) son Jacques later would, he went down in history with only six grand-prix wins. More telling of his talent, though, was when his championship-winning teammate Jody Scheckter called him “simply the fastest driver in the history of motor racing.”
Even more impressive was when Gilles drove this very car from his home in Monte Carlo to the factory in Maranello in a scant two and a half hours. The 270-mile journey usually takes nearly twice that, meaning that Villeneuve must have averaged a speed of nearly 112 miles per hour – and not on wide open expressways, either.
Following his untimely passing at the 1982 Belgian Grand Prix, the car was brought back to the factory. The automaker sold it two years later to a new owner in Modena, whose wife held onto it until 2010 when it found a new home in Denmark. Two years after that, it was invited to take part in a special exhibition at the factory museum in Maranello.
Now it’s coming up for auction, with less than 23,000 miles (37,000 km) on the clock, at RM Sotheby’s upcoming sale that takes place, fittingly enough, in Monaco, where it will be offered without reserve.