Auctions and Brokerage
Coachwork by Scaglietti
Sheldon Brooks, Bloomington, Minnesota (imported car into the US in 1980)Paul Barnhardt, Houston, Texas (purchased from the above in 1981)Titus Harris III, Houston, Texas (acquired from the above in April 1995)David A. Jorge, New Bedford, Massachusetts (acquired from the above in April 2002)Current Owner (acquired from the estate of the above)
Yet to reach its full potential as a collectible, Ferrari’s mid-engine Berlinetta Boxer was a groundbreaking model in engineering and design, as this example from 1980 sensationally attests.
First shown at the 1971 Torino Motor Show as a replacement for the 365 GTB/4 Daytona, and first available in 1973 as the 365 GT4 Berlinetta Boxer, the BB was the original production mid-engined 12-cylinder Ferrari road car. This configuration took quite some time for Enzo Ferrari to approve, as he wasn’t sure that his clients could handle what was essentially a racing car with road car amenities. Specification was definitely exotic for the period, using a flat 12-cylinder engine mounted longitudinally. Ferrari built the BB to compete with mid-engined models such as the Lamborghini Countach.
The 512 BB was introduced in 1976 and benefited from the fitment of a larger 4.9-liter engine, which prompted the model’s revised nomenclature (now denoting a five-liter, flat 12-cylinder unit) from the prior 365 cc single-cylinder displacement of the original 365 GT4 BB. The 512 BB used Weber three-choke carburetors and produced 360 hp, down just a bit from the earlier 365 engine, but it produced more usable torque at lower rpm.
This fantastic black 512 BB was originally imported into the US in 1980 by Sheldon Brooks of Bloomington, Minnesota. Brooks was an Italian-car enthusiast and is also known to have ordered a Lamborghini Countach in the same period. While BBs were not federalized for US sale by Ferrari, chassis 30931 comes with a letter from the EPA dated September 16, 1980, stating that this 512 BB had been tested and shown to conform with federal emissions standards.
The Ferrari was soon sent to Houston, Texas, where it was purchased by Paul Barnhardt. Barnhardt sold the 512 in 1995 to Titus Harris III with only 2,750 miles on the odometer, as noted by service records from Ferrari of Houston. Mr. Harris was also a Ferrari of Houston customer, and service records for both owners accompany the car. By 2002, and at 6,381 miles, the car had been sold to David A. Jorge of New Bedford, Massachusetts. Mr. Jorge owned the car until his passing in 2012, at which time the Boxer was purchased by the consignor.
In its current ownership, this 512 has been used sparingly and treated to a major service at Independent Ferrari Service in South Easton, Massachusetts. The car also has been converted back to Euro-specification bumpers. Showing just under 16,000 miles – thought by the consignor to be original – this 512 BB is a fantastic example of one of Ferrari’s most daring models and should be considered carefully by collectors looking for a thrilling icon of 1970s Italian exotic car design.