With the Ferrari 250 GTOs being among the most valuable collector cars, at this point, I don’t even want to guess how many other 250-series Ferraris from the 1950s and early ’60s have been converted into GTO, SWB, Testa Rossa, California, or even Lusso replicas. Now, GTO Engineering—a classic Ferrari specialist based in the UK and Los Angeles—is here with an interesting alternative.
You may know GTO Engineering as the creator of the 2021 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Competizione Revival, a brand new hand-built SWB based on an existing Ferrari 250 chassis. You may also know that in 2020, Ferrari lost the trademark of the 250 GTO’s Pininfarina-designed body shape, and so now pretty much anybody can come up with kit cars, clones, resto-mods, or even a heavily updated successor. Meet GTO Engineering’s new production-ready all-new vehicle running under the codename Project Moderna. As you’ve probably guessed, the name is a play on Modena and modernity.
It’s a compelling proposition: a successor built around a motorsport-derived new chassis, powered by an equally new quad-cam V12 engine connected to a manual gearbox, all under 2,200 pounds. Company founder Mark Lyon had this to say about their most ambitious development to date:
“After the exceptional reception from interested owners and fans who would like to own a car such as ours, we’re now making it happen and publicly documenting the development process. For our team, the engine and the aesthetics are two of the most important parts of any car, especially this one, which is why we were keen to start here.”
“The quad-cam V12, with the help of our specialist in-house engine builders, is beginning to be finalised. At the same time our designers have been working with us on the outer body to finalise the surfaces before transferring it to modelling. To ensure we keep to our goals we’re working around a custom ‘muletto’ chassis, which is situated in the GTO Engineering workshops. It’s a daily reminder of how we need to not only keep the design’s proportions right, as well as weight distribution and ergonomics. People have got a little taller since the sixties, so we’re looking at the packaging with the design too, ensuring that the driver and passenger have enough room in the cabin and ample luggage space in the car.”
With GTO engineering already offering 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0-liter V12s for their 250 SWB and TR Revivals, the naturally-aspirated quad-cam V12 in this new car would certainly get a thumbs up from Gioacchino Colombo himself. However, the biggest news is GTO Engineering’s mulletto chassis, which is pretty complex.
Well below that Zagato-style double-bubble roof, GTO Engineering offers a traditional tubular steel chassis featuring additional lightweight, yet high-strength aluminum subframes. Currently existing in layout buck form at the UK headquarters, this new chassis is set to provide customers with the correct footprint and clever packaging, as well as perfect weight distribution for such a lightweight rear-drive coupe.
All this means that once in production, the Moderna-codenamed project will result in a classic ’60s Ferrari that you can drive every single day. Even at a likely seven-figure price tag, there’s plenty to like about GTO Engineering’s latest offer.
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