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Ferrari 512 S Berlinetta Speciale

By David Wilson Monday, July 20, 2015

By the late 60s Ferrari had a good run of curvaceous cars – but then in 1969 they unveiled the 512 S Berlinetta Speciale concept at the Turin Show and said hello to the wedge!


Photo by Rainer W. Schlegelmilch/Rainer Schlegelmilch/Getty Images

It was designed by Filippo Sapino while on his short tenure at Pininfarina. (Sapino later went on to become the Chief at Ghia where he penned the Ford Pinto and Escort).

The Speciale started life as the Ferrari 312P Spyder race car which was badly damaged at Monza. Rather than rebuilding it Ferrari gave what was left to Pininfarina where the designers were told to let their imaginations run wild. Sapino’s design was the one chosen to be built with its ready to pounce back end.

This was all a bit of a radical departure for Ferrari in terms of design and it was to influence the look of future Ferrari’s – such was the importance of this 512 S concept. It has become revered by petrol heads everywhere and even has its own Facebook page.

Now, purists and Ferrari fans will hate us for this, but in the same year as the Speciale was unveiled another car was launched across the pond which shares very similar aesthetics – the Panthermobile.



Come on, you’ve got to admit it has some similarities. It might not quite have the finesse of the Pininfarina touch, but Pink Panther’s wheels had quite a forward thinking design. Jay Ohrberg, incidentally, who designed the Panthermobile was also responsible for creating K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider, the 1966 Batmobile and the Back To The Future DeLorean.


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