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1970 Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Coupe::

The Ferrari 365GTB/4, the 'Daytona', is generally regarded as the greatest front-engined GT of all time. Its slippery body was styled by Leonardo Fioravanti of Pininfarina studio, who also penned many beautiful Ferraris including Dino, 308GTB and 512BB but who himself still loves Daytona most.

It is always a difficult task to design a front-mounted big engine Grand Tourer, because the huge size of the engine prevent the front end from looking sleek. Nevertheless, Fioravanti had his own way. He lengthened the bonnet and installed the engine as far back as possible. As a result, the front end has sufficient length to incorporate a sharp nose. To offset the increment of length in the front, Fioravanti restricted the rear overhang to the minimum. In order to balance front and rear, a rear axle-mounted gearbox (in other words, transaxle) was adopted, though knowing the sleekness of gearchange would be harmed.

The Daytona was a big car weighing in excess of 1600 kg. But it was even more powerful. The 4.4-litre dohc V12 was not an all-new design. In fact, it was derived from the familiar Colombo unit which started life in the first Ferrari. However, Maranello squeezed the last drop of potential out it, enlarging it from 3.3 litres (as used in the 275GTB/4) to 4.4 litres.

As the biggest engine Maranello had ever developed, it output a record 352 hp and 318 lbft. More important, it was also extremely smooth and flexible. In addition to the wind-cheating shape, 365GTB/4 achieved a real 174 mph top speed and took only 5.4 sec to finish 0-60 mph, which made it faster than Lamborghini Miura. Unquestionably, Daytona was the fastest car in the world until the mid-80s, when Lamborghini Countach 5000QV appeared. Handling was sharp, consistent and very enjoyable, with plenty of feel. Ride was somewhat firm, but the faster it went, the better it rode. Of course, it would be unreasonable to expect the same level of handling and ride as the smaller and mid-engined Dino, but at least Daytona beat its British rivals like Aston and Jaguar by several streets.

The Daytona was very well-developed. During its 6 years life span, no significant modifications had to be made. No wonder it is still hardly forgotten by many car enthusiasts today.

Years of Production: 1968 to 1974
Total Produced: 1426
Original Price: $19,500 (1968)
Curb Weight: 3600 lbs
Layout: Front-Engine/RWD
Transmission: 5-Speed Manual
Engine Type: V12
Displacement: 4390 cc
Horsepower: 405 bhp @ 7500 rpm
Torque: 365 lb-ft @ 7500 rpm
Performance: 0-60 mph: 5.9 sec; 0-100 mph: 12.0 sec; Quarter Mile: 13.8 sec;
Top Speed: 174 mph


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