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1988 Ferrari GTB Turbo

1988 Ferrari Turbo GTB

Vehicle Specifications
Stock No:
666
Year:
1988
Make:
Ferrari
Model:
GTB Turbo
Engine No:
Exterior Color:
Interior Color:
Mileage:
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1988 Ferrari Turbo GTB

Year 1988
Make Ferrari
Model Turbo GTB
VIN ZFFZA27B000079105
Engine No Ferrari F106N *14604*
Gearbox No F106 DB 926
Exterior Color Medium Blue Metalic
Interior Color Two-Tone Dark over Light Blue
Mileage 48,310 Kilometers / 30,018 Miles

Background GTB/GTS Turbo:
In 1986 Ferrari launched an all new, two-litre, turbocharged and intercooled variant of the 328, now designated simply as the GTB Turbo and GTS Turbo, replacing the previous 308-based, non-intercooled, Ferrari 208 GTB/GTS Turbo.  As with the previous version, the new Turbo GTB and GTS was developed specifically for the domestic Italian market, where cars with a displacement of over 2-litres, like the 328 were subject to a 38% value added tax, up from the normal 18%.  Almost immediately and much to the surprise of Ferrari, non-Italian based buyers showed interest in ever increasing numbers and non-Italian sales accounted for more than 1/3rd of the very small production run.  The original 308 GTB and GTS Turbo, while a sales success, was not a particularly well engineered machine.  Essentially other than adding a turbocharger to a smaller, two-liter engine, few other changes were incorporated.  The goal was an attempt to boost the anemic power of the smaller engine but lack of additional engineering development meant just a small increase in performance.  Today, these first generation turbo-charged Ferraris are remembered mostly for massive turbo-lag and as such are not well regarded amongst Ferrari enthusiasts.

In 1985 and largely due to the success of Ferrari's flagship 288GTO, Ferraris engineers put far more thought, effort and energy into the new Turbo GTB and GTS, which would be based on the all new and vastly improved 328 platform.  The new turbocharged engine was completely unique to these vehicles.  It was given the designation Tipo F106 N 000 V8.  The engine block was derived from the new 328 but with reduced displacement and many additional internal as well as external changes.  Internally it featured better designed heads a more robust crankshaft and connecting rods and externally, chiefly by adding an intercooler and adopting a new turbocharger it gave a completely different look and appearance.  Displacement was unchanged from the previous 208 Turbo, at 1991cc with a bore and stroke of 66.8 mm (2.6 in) × 71 mm (2.8 in); there were four overhead camshafts driving two valves per cylinder; Bosch K-jetronic mechanical fuel injection was used but whereas the 208 Turbos had used a single KKK turbocharger, these new 328-based cars used a water-cooled IHI unit running at 1.05 bars (15.2 psi) of boost.  The induction system was similar to the set up and essentially 1/2 of what was used on the 288GTO but using using of course just a single turbo and intercooler.  Charge air was cooled by a massive BEHR air-to-air intercooler mounted on top of the engine.  Output was purposely downrated at 251 bhp at 6,500 rpm so as to place it down market of the 328's 270bhp rating.  Actual output was about the same as that of the naturally aspirated 328 with one internal testing figure putting it at 275bhp at 6,650 rpm.  Maximum torque of the Turbo GTB/GTS was reached at engine speeds 700 rpm lower than on the 208 Turbo, making the engine far more flexible.  Most importantly, the intercooler, better engine management, fuel-injection and ignition timing completely eliminated the horrendous turbo-lag of the earlier 308 GTB and GTS Turbo.

Other than the engine, differences between the two-litre Turbo and the regular 328 there were numerous.  Accommodating the top-mounted intercooler required a redesigned engine cover, as well as ducting and NACA intakes (positioned just forwards of each rear wheel arch.) To feed the engine with cool air, the rear bumper of the 328 was discarded entirely.  An all new kevlar/nomex cosmetic bumper featuring five ventilation holes was now fitted instead which had the added benefit of removing a massive 80 kilograms of weigh from the rear of the car.  Additional detail changes were incorporated and unless a regular 328 is placed side-by-side, it is hard to initially see the differences.  A black roof spoiler, optional on the 328, was standard on the Turbo GTB.  Iinside a boost pressure gauge was added to the instrument cluster and new door panels and other features were added to the special Turbo GTB and GTS models.

According to the Ferrari top speed was 253 km/h (157 mph) and 0–100 km/h (0–62 mph) took 6.3 seconds which were near identical to the 328.  Actual driving comparisons between the two tell a different story and the Turbo GTB and GTS were regarded as a thrill to drive and sounded completely different than their naturally aspirated siblings.  In June 1986 Italian automobile magazine Quattroruote published a comparison test between a 328 GTS and a GTS Turbo. Despite the differences between the former's 32-valve atmospheric engine and the latter's torquier but peakier turbocharged 16-valve engine, performance was found to be quite similar in both acceleration and top speed.  What was more important was the overall conclusion that the new Turbo was a significantly more fun vehicle for an enthusiastic driver.  This was something that soon caught on amongst Ferraristi outside of Italy where the vehicle had initially primarily been marketed.

During the production period between 1986 and 1989 Ferrari made just over 300 GTB Turbos.  As a result of the end of limited production 288GTO and to the surprise of Ferrari, the Turbo program was quite popular.  Units sold quickly and orders came in that could not be filled before Ferrari marketing stepped in an killed off the program entirely due to sales conflicts with their new F40 flagship SuperCar.  Ferrari management never quite understood the popularity of the Turbo GTB and GTS models and preferred focussing all of their attention on the F40.

1988 Ferrari Turbo GTB, VIN ZFFZA27B000079105:
Like a fair number of Ferrari enthusiasts, I was completely unaware of the Turbo GTB and GTS models.  Here in the States, they are almost completely unknown with most today still being found in Italy, Germany and Japan where they continue to have a strong following.  All that survive are something a bit more special than a regular 328 GTB or GTS.  This particular Turbo GTB even more so as it was ordered in the unique color combination of Medium Blue Metallic with a contrasting, two-tone dark and light blue interior.  

This Ferrari was ordered new corporately by 1st Piemontese Del Leasing, S.p.A Torino in Torino, Italy.  The order was handled by the official Ferrari agent, Symbol Car S.p.A., the official Ferrari Agency of Torino, Italy.  It was completed in October of 1988 and delivered later that month with the sale being recorded on November 11th, 1988.  It remained corporately owned for the next nine years before being sold on April 24th, 1997 to another Torino owner.  On May 28th, 2004 this Ferrari was sold to another Italian owner remaining in Northern Italy but this time going East to Padova.  Ownership changed hands again just a few months later on July 7th, 2004.  It remained in Padova until heading south to Catanzaro, Italy on July 27th, 2007.  It remained there until September of 2014 with no additional ownership changes until being sold to a private Japanese museum collection.  It was officially exported from Italy and imported to Japan later that month and was then registered on September 24th, 2014 and issued Japanese plates, “331 208”