Ferrari America

Last updated
Ferrari 340 America, 342 America, 375 America, 410 Superamerica, 400 Superamerica, 500 Superfast, 365 California
Manufacturer Ferrari
Body and chassis
Class Grand tourer
Layout Front-engine, rear-wheel-drive
Engine V12

Ferrari America is a series of top-end Ferrari models built in the 1950s and 1960s. They were large grand touring cars with the largest V12 engines and often had custom bodywork. All America models used a live axle in the rear, were front-engined, and had worm and sector steering.


Two of the series, the 410 and the 400, were called Superamerica. The final member of the America production family was called the 500 Superfast. The series also includes the 365 California.

340 America

Ferrari 340 America
Ferrari 340 America Spyder Vignale at Mille Miglia 2012.jpg
Ferrari 340 America Vignale Spyder
25 made (two were converted from 275 S)
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupé
2-door roadster
Engine 4.1 L (4101.66 cc) Lampredi V12
Power output220 PS
Transmission 5-speed manual
Wheelbase 2,420 mm (95.3 in)
Kerb weight 900 kg (1,984 lb) (dry, berlinetta)

The first America cars were the 340, produced between 1950 and 1952. Using the new Lampredi V12 developed for Formula One racing, the 340 America could produce 220 PS (162 kW; 217 hp). [1] Originally only 23 copies were built: 11 by Vignale, eight by Touring, and four by Ghia. [2] Giovanni Michelotti designed Coupé and 2+2 Coupé for Ghia and Coupé and Spider for Vignale. The first two Americas were converted from the 275 S. In 1951, 340 America Vignale Berlinetta won Mille Miglia race driven by Luigi Villoresi. Three Touring barchettas were also entered that year but did not finish. [3]

The 340/342 America was replaced by its larger-engined brother, the 375 America.

342 America

Ferrari 342 America
Ferrari 1952 342 America Pinin Farina Front Right on Pebble Beach Tour d'Elegance 2011 -Moto@Club4AG.jpg
Ferrari 342 America Pinin Farina Coupé
6 made
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupé
2-door convertible
Engine 4.1 L (4101.66 cc) Lampredi V12
Power output200 PS
Transmission 4-speed manual
Wheelbase 2,650 mm (104.3 in)
Kerb weight 1,200 kg (2,646 lb)

Only six road cars were made: Vignale Cabriolet (designed by Giovanni Michelotti), two Pinin Farina Cabriolets and three Pinin Farina Coupés. Using the same Lampredi-designed engine as in 340 America with a different carburettor air filter arrangement and thus was detuned to 200 PS (147 kW; 197 hp). Last example, the Pinin Farina Cabriolet s/n 0248AL presented at 1953 New York Auto show, was upgraded to 4.5 L engine. [4] Both 340/342 Americas used even chassis numbering of a race cars, while 375 America and later used odd chassis numbering of a road cars. A Black Pinin Farina Cabriolet was owned by King Leopold III of Belgium.

375 America

Ferrari 375 America
Ferrari 375 Vignale 1.jpg
12 made (two were converted from 250 Europa)
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupé
2-door roadster
Engine 4.5 L (4522.08 cc) Tipo 104 Lampredi V12
Power output300 PS
Transmission 4-speed manual
Wheelbase 2,800 mm (110.2 in)
Kerb weight 1,150 kg (2,535 lb)

The 375 America was introduced in 1953 and a Pinin Farina bodied example was shown at that year's Paris Salon. Built as a successor to the 342 America, The 375 used the new 4.5 L (4,522 cc) "long block" Lampredi designed V12 engine that produced up to 300 PS (221 kW; 296 hp) at 6300 rpm, with three Weber 40DCF (or DCZ) carburettors, and allowed it do 0-60 mph in under seven seconds and reach a top speed of almost 160 mph (257.5 kmh). [5] The 375 and later used odd chassis numbering of a road cars, while the 340/342 Americas using even chassis numbering of a race cars. The 375 was expensive and exclusive and was only built from late 1953 through 1954. 12 cars were made, with ten being original 375s and two being 250 Europas that were subsequently converted to 375 specifications (the 250 Europa and 375 had a nearly identical wheelbase, chassis and mechanicals). [6] The majority of 375s had either three or five-window coupe bodies by Pinin Farina, though Vignale bodied around three Coupés and one convertible.

410 Superamerica

Ferrari 410 Superamerica
1959 Ferrari 410 Superamerica.jpg
Series III 410 Superamerica Pinin Farina Coupé
35 made
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupé
2-door roadster
Engine 5.0 L (4962.96 cc) Tipo 126 Lampredi V12
Power output340 PS/360 PS
Transmission 4-speed manual
Wheelbase 2,800 mm (110.2 in)
2,600 mm (102.4 in)
Kerb weight 1,200 kg (2,646 lb)

Ferrari produced another line of America cars, beginning with the 1955 410 Superamerica. The engine, based on a single plug 410 S powerplant, was now up to 5.0 L with 340 PS (250 kW; 335 hp) at 6,000 rpm produced thanks to triple Weber 40DCF carburettors. A 1957 Superamerica series III had triple 46DCF3 Webers for even more power (360 PS (265 kW; 355 hp)) and was also the final development for the 'long-block' Lampredi V12. [7]

Each 410 Superamerica had custom bodywork, with a few by Boano and Ghia but most by Ferrari stalwart, Pinin Farina. The price was extremely high—at US$16,800, the 410 Superamerica offered at the New York Auto Show by importer Luigi Chinetti was more than twice as expensive as the Mercedes-Benz 300SL "Gullwing" exhibited by Max Hoffman. Just 35 were built when the series ended in 1959. [8] First 2 series of Pinin Farina coupés were very similar with only 3rd series radically redesigned with non-panoramic rear window, different side-line, lower front grille and more recessed headlights, some covered. While most 3rd series PF coupés had 3 louvres behind side-windows, some have this space glassed over. Series III cars were introduced in 1958.

410 Superfast Pinin Farina Speciale

Also known as "Superfast I", made on 410 Superamerica chassis with 24-plug racing engine from 410 S, prominent tailfins and bi-coloured body. It was unveiled at the 1956 Paris Auto Show. Wheelbase was shorter at 2,600 mm. [9]

4.9 Superfast

Another show car based on 410 Superamerica chassis and engine was Ferrari 4.9 Superfast. First time presented in Paris, 1957, this car was an evolution of 410 Superfast but without the prominent rear fins. Also the colours were similar but with dark blue-green full body and white roof. [10]

400 Superamerica

Ferrari 400 Superamerica
1962 Ferrari 400 Superamerica Aerodinamico - Flickr - exfordy.jpg
Series I Ferrari 400 Superamerica Coupé Aerodinamico
47 made
Designer Aldo Brovarone at Pinin Farina (Coupé Aerodinamico)
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupé
2-door roadster
Engine 4.0 L (3967.44 cc) Tipo 163 Colombo V12
Power output340 PS
Transmission 4-speed manual with overdrive
Wheelbase 2,420 mm (95.3 in)(series I)
2,600 mm (102.4 in)(series II)
Kerb weight 1,250 kg (2,756 lb) (dry, coupé)

The 400 Superamerica had a smaller 4.0 L Colombo engine, but produced as much power as its predecessor, 340 PS (250 kW; 335 hp) at 7,000 rpm. It debuted in 1959 as 410 production ended, and was available as a coupe, spider, or cabriolet with custom Pinin Farina bodywork. Four-wheel disc brakes were a new addition. 47 Ferrari 400s had been built, along 2 series, when the 400 stepped aside in 1964, of which 32 were coupé aerodinamico variant. Series I coupés aerodinamico had open hood air scoop while series II cars had covered scoop and slightly longer wheelbase. [11]

400 Superamerica Pinin Farina Coupé Speciale

A special one-off version of the 400 Superamerica, s/n 1517SA, was built in 1959 for Gianni Agnelli. This car was also the very first of the 400 Superamericas. A very similar body with its characteristic square grille, was used on Maserati 5000 GT that was also built for Sig. Agnelli. [12]

400 Superamerica Superfast II–IV

Originally built as series I Ferrari 400 Superamerica Aerodinamico Pinin Farina Coupé, chassis no. 2207SA, was bodied and presented as Superfast II at the Torino Motor Show in 1960 and 1961. It was used by Battista "Pinin" Farina as his personal car. In 1961 rebodied into Superfast III and presented at 1962 Geneva Motor Show. Same year redesigned another, final, time as Superfast IV. It was a styling concept for the upcoming 500 Superfast model. Currently this show car can be seen on various events with its first styling.

500 Superfast

Ferrari 500 Superfast
1964 Ferrari 500 Superfast fr.jpg
36 made
Designer Aldo Brovarone at Pininfarina
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupé
Engine 5.0 L (4962.96 cc) Tipo 208 Colombo V12
Power output400 PS
Transmission 4-speed manual with overdrive
5-speed manual
Wheelbase 2,650 mm (104.3 in)
Length4,820 mm (189.8 in)
Width1,730 mm (68.1 in)
Height1,280 mm (50.4 in)
Kerb weight 1,400 kg (3,086 lb)

The end of the top-line America series was the 500 Superfast, first shown on the Pininfarina stand at the March 1964 Geneva Motor Show. [13] During development these cars were to be called "Superamerica", but the decision was made at the last moment to use "Superfast" instead.[ citation needed ]

The engine was a unique 4,962.96 cc (303 cu in) Ferrari Colombo V12 engine, [14] which had the same dimensions as the Lampredi "long-block" engines of the 410 Superamerica, otherwise the design was based on the original Colombo "short block". Breathing through six twin-choke Weber 40DCZ/6 carburettors, the V12 produced 400 PS (294 kW; 395 hp) at 6,500 rpm and could push the car to 280 kilometres per hour (174 mph). [14] The chassis was very similar in construction to the contemporary 330 GT 2+2, and bodywork was again done by Pininfarina. When leaving the factory the 500 Superfast originally fitted Pirelli Cinturato CN72 205 VR15 tyres. 36 cars were made from 1964 to 1966, including 12 improved models with a 5-speed transmission in place of the earlier 4-speed plus overdrive. This production total excludes a one-off 330 GT 2+2 produced with a Superfast-style body for Prince Bernhard of The Netherlands. Only coupés were made and no Superfast roadsters were available.

365 California

Ferrari 365 California
Ferrari 1967 365 California (9062327023).jpg
14 made
Designer Tom Tjaarda at Pininfarina [15]
Body and chassis
Body style 2+2 convertible
RelatedFerrari 500 Superfast
Engine 4.4 L (4390.35 cc) Tipo 217B Colombo V12
Power output320 PS
Transmission 5-speed manual
Wheelbase 2,650 mm (104.3 in)
Length4,900 mm (192.9 in)
Width1,780 mm (70.1 in)
Height1,330 mm (52.4 in)
Kerb weight 1,320 kg (2,910 lb) (dry)

The 365 California replaced the 500 Superfast for 1966. It was the first 365 model, with its 4,390 cc (268 cu in) V12 based on the 330's 4.0 L Colombo unit but with an 81 mm bore. The 365 California used the same chassis as the 500 Superfast but with an evolutionary cabriolet body by Pininfarina. Debuting at the Geneva Motor Show in 1966, just 14 examples were produced (including 2 in right hand drive) before production ended in 1967. Whilst the prototype was built on a 330 GT 2+2 type 571 chassis, [16] production cars featured type 598 chassis. Chassis' were sent to Pininfarina's Grugliasco plant to be bodied and trimmed which were later returned to Ferrari for fitment of the mechanical components.

Related Research Articles

Giovanni Michelotti Italian designer (1921-1980)

Giovanni Michelotti was one of the most prolific designers of sports cars in the 20th century. His notable contributions were for Ferrari, Lancia, Maserati and Triumph marques. He was also associated with truck designs for Leyland Motors, and with designs for British Leyland after the merger of Leyland and BMC.

Ferrari Lampredi engine

Aurelio Lampredi designed a number of racing engines for Ferrari. He was brought on to hedge the company's bets with a different engine family than the small V12s designed by Gioacchino Colombo. Lampredi went on to design a number of different Inline-4, Inline-6, and V12 engines through the 1950s, and it was these that would power the company's string of world championships that decade. All were quickly abandoned, however, with the Dino V6 and V8 taking the place of the fours and sixes and evolution of the older Colombo V12 continuing as the company's preeminent V12.

Carrozzeria Scaglietti

Carrozzeria Scaglietti was an Italian automobile design and coachbuilding company active in the 1950s. It was founded by Sergio Scaglietti in 1951 as an automobile repair concern, but was located across the road from Ferrari in Maranello outside Modena, Italy.

Ferrari 250 car model

The Ferrari 250 is a series of sports cars and grand tourers built by Ferrari from 1952 to 1964. The company's most successful early line, the 250 series includes many variants designed for road use or sports car racing. 250 series cars are characterized by their use of a 3.0 L (2,953 cc) Colombo V12 engine designed by Giaoccino Colombo. They were replaced by the 275 and 330 series cars.

The Ferrari 330 was a series of V12 powered automobiles produced by Ferrari in 2+2 GT Coupé, two-seat Berlinetta, spyder, and race car versions between 1963 and 1968.

Ferrari 212 Inter car model

The Ferrari 212 Inter replaced Ferrari's successful 166 and 195 Inter grand tourers in 1951. Unveiled at the Brussels Motor Show that year, the 212 was an evolution of the 166 — a sports car for the road that could also win international races. In 1951, two 212 Inters, both Vignale coupés, driven by Taruffi/Chinetti and Ascari/Villoresi, scored 1-2 victory at Carrera Panamericana in Mexico.

Maserati A6 car model

Maserati A6 were a series of grand tourers, racing sports cars and single seaters made by Maserati of Italy between 1947 and 1956. They were named for Alfieri Maserati and for their straight-six engine.

Ferrari 340

The Ferrari 340 Mexico was a Ferrari sports racing car which was intended for the 1952 Carrera Panamericana. It used 4.1 L Lampredi V12 engine producing around 280 PS (206 kW) at 6600 rpm, for a maximum speed of 280 km/h. Just 4 were made in 1952, 3 Vignale Berlinettas and 1 Vignale Spyder; all designed by Giovanni Michelotti. Mexico used a 2,600 mm (102.4 in) wheelbase. Chinetti and Lucas finished the race at third place in berlinetta.

Ferrari 375 F1 racing automobile

After finding only modest success with the supercharged 125 F1 car in Formula One, Ferrari decided to switch for 1950 to the naturally aspirated 4.5-litre formula for the series. Calling in Aurelio Lampredi to replace Gioacchino Colombo as technical director, Enzo Ferrari directed that the company work in stages to grow and develop an entirely new large-displacement V12 engine for racing.

Ferrari 166 Inter

The Ferrari 166 Inter was Ferrari's first true grand tourer. An evolution of the 125 S and 166 S racing cars, it was a sports car for the street with coachbuilt bodies. The Inter name commemorated the victories claimed in 166 S models by Scuderia Inter. 38 166 Inters were built from 1948 through 1950. Note that both the 166 S and 166 F2 were also called "166 Inter" in the days that they were actively raced by the Scuderia of the same name.

A Ferrari Monza is one of a series of cars built by Ferrari. In the early 1950s, Ferrari shifted from using the compact Gioacchino Colombo-designed V12 engine in its smallest class of sports racers to a line of four-cylinder engines designed by Aurelio Lampredi. Inspired by the success of the light and reliable 2.5 L 553 F1 car, the four-cylinder sports racers competed successfully through the late 1950s, culminating with the famed 500 Mondial and 750 Monza.

Ferrari 212 Export

The Ferrari 212 Export was a sports racing car produced by Ferrari in 1951–1952. The 212 Exports won Tour de France automobile, Giro di Sicilia, Coppa della Toscana, 10 Hours of Messina and other motor races throughout its career. It was meant to be a sports car available for oversees markets.

Aldo Brovarone Italian designer

Aldo Brovarone is noted Italian automobile designer and the former chief stylist for Pininfarina — widely known for a prominent range of work including the Ferrari Dino GTS, Lancia Gamma Coupé and the Peugeot 504 and 504 Coupé.

Ferrari 375 Plus

The Ferrari 375 Plus was a sports racing car produced by Ferrari in 1954. The model competed internationally, winning many major races, including 24 Hours of Le Mans, Carrera Panamericana, 1000km of Buenos Aires, Agadir GP and Silverstone.

Ferrari 375 MM Model of Ferrari car

The Ferrari 375 MM, was a sports racing car produced by Ferrari in 1953 up to 1955 for the road cars. It was named "375" for the unitary displacement of one cylinder in the 4.5 L V12 engine, and the "MM" stood for the Mille Miglia race. In total 26 units were made, including four converted from the 340 MM.

Ferrari 410 S

The Ferrari 410 S was a sports racing car produced by Ferrari in 1955-1956. After the racing succeses of 375 Plus, mainly in 1954 Carrera Panamericana, Ferrari decided to prepare another model for this marathon. The 410 S was intended as a long distance race car originally designed for the 1955 Carrera Panamericana and was the final model of the Lampredi V12 sports car lineage. The next generation of sports racing cars that replaced the 410 S were powered by the new Jano V12 engines.

Ferrari 275 S

The Ferrari 275 S was a sports racing car produced by Ferrari in 1950. It was the first Ferrari powered by a new Aurelio Lampredi-designed V12 engine, created as a large displacement alternative to the initial 1,5 L Colombo V12, used in supercharged form in Ferrari 125 F1. Formula One regulations allowed for up to 4.5 L in naturally aspirated form.

Ferrari 250 MM

The Ferrari 250 MM was a sports racing car produced by Ferrari in 1953. After the initial racing succeses of the 3.0-litre Colombo V12 engine, introduced in the 250 S one-off, Ferrari produced a serial racing model. It is best recognisable for the distinctive closed berlinetta bodywork by Pinin Farina. The "MM" in its name stood for the Mille Miglia race.


  1. "Ferrari 340 America". Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  2. Thorson, Thor (September 2008). "1951 Ferrari 340 America Coupe". Sports Car Market . 20 (9): 44.
  3. "Mille Miglia 1951 Race Results". Retrieved 22 May 2019.
  4. "Ferrari 342 America". Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  5. "RM Sotheby's - r210 1953 Ferrari 375 America Coupe by Carrozzeria Vignale". RM Sotheby's. 2017-08-16. Retrieved 2018-05-01.
  6. "Ferrari 375 America". Retrieved 2018-05-01.
  7. "Ferrari 410 Superamerica". Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  8. Ahlgrim, Steve (April 2012). "1957 Ferrari 410 Superamerica Coupe". Sports Car Market . 24 (4): 46–47.
  9. "Ferrari 410 "Superfast I" PF Speciale". Retrieved 4 July 2019.
  10. "410 Superamerica s/n 0719SA". Retrieved 13 October 2019.
  11. "Ferrari 400 Superamerica". Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  12. "400 Superamerica SWB Series I s/n 1517SA". Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  13. Bernabò, Ferruccio (12 March 1964). "Si apre oggi a Ginevra il Salone dell'Auto, primo grande confronto della produzione mondiale". La Stampa . p. 13. Retrieved 12 February 2017.
  14. 1 2 "Ferrari 500 Superfast". Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  15. "Cars by Tom Tjaarda". Retrieved 11 June 2013.
  16. "Ferrari 365 California". Retrieved 21 May 2019.