If you’ve read some articles on this blog, you probably know that Ferrari is one of my favourite car brands. Ferrari is well known for its great looking sports cars. And I like those a lot! But for some reason the Ferrari 400i (and 412) has had some weird kind of appeal to me. I don’t know why exactly, but I think because it is a Ferrari that doesn’t look too exuberant and is a return to the elegant Gran Turismo archetype of the 60s and 70s.
Pininfarina was responsible for the sleek lines of the three-box design, housing a 2+2 seat layout. The 400 was introduced in 1976 as a replacement for the 365 GT4 2+2. In 1979 the 400i replaced the 400. The only change (besides the 400i badge) was the replacement of the carburettors with a Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection. This was mainly done to comply with the US emission standards. Sadly the power of the 4.8 litre V12 dropped from 340 hp in the 400 to 310 hp in the 400i.
Just as the 400, the 400i offered two models: the ‘400i Automatic’ with a 3-speed automatic transmission and the ‘400i GT’ with the 5-speed manual gearbox.
In 1982 the 400i received a major overhaul (dubbed ‘Series II’). Engine modifications upped the power to 315 hp and the interior received a significant upgrade resulting in a more modern and luxurious cockpit. In 1985 the 400i was replaced by the 412.
Within the classic Ferrari-range, the 365 GT4 2+2/400/412 have long been neglected. Although their sales figures at the time were not bad during the 16 year run, the model hasn’t received much enthusiasm from classic car enthusiasts. This was mainly due to the presence of an automatic gearbox on the majority of the cars and the discreet and not sportscar-alike styling.
But during the last years the model has become more popular and more sought after. After all this is a Ferrari in which you can take the wife and two kids along to enjoy the character of the Italian prancing horse. Try that in a 308/328 or a Testarossa!
The Ferrari 400i here on sale is a RHD (one of 150) 1980 car with the 3-speed automatic (883 automatic and 422 GT’s were made from 1979-1985). The dark blue paint (Vernice Blu) complements the black/blue leather interior (Pella nera VM 8500) very well. In 1980 the car was delivered in the UK and has driven 64,756 miles. In 2008 it returned to Italy and was restored in 2012 by a Ferrari-specialist in Milan. Overall, the car looks to be in great shape.
The €47,500-€62,500 estimate seems a bit steep and at 5 days before the end of the online auction the highest bid of only €36,000 confirms this. Which looks like an interesting price for a well-maintained classic Ferrari which you can use with the whole family.
This Ferrari 400i is available through the online auction site Catawiki, which has several country-specific sites (direct links to the Ferrari 400i):
Catawiki The Netherlands