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Experiencing Driving A Ferrari 288 GTO For 1,000km

Image Source: Jarlat Maletych @ShutterStock

I’ll be the first to admit I’m more of a Lamborghini guy than a Ferrari guy. Still, there are a few exceptions to this, one being the 1984 Ferrari 288 GTO, for Gran Turismo Omologata, this very impressive car was only in production for three years, between 1984 and 1988. Only 272 units were built in Maranello, making this a relatively rare car today, and while at first glance it might look like the more subtle 308 GTB which was built between 1975 and 1983, this 288 GTO is a different beast altogether.

Powered by a 2.9-liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine the 288 GTO came with 395 bhp and 366 lb-ft of torque to deliver a top speed of no less than 288 km/h (179 mph), acceleration from 0 to 60 mph took just 5 seconds, but get this, the Ferrari 288 GTO was not ‘federalized’ for sale in the United States, the ones that did get imported into the USA were all grey import vehicles, which made this Prancing Horse even more exclusive in the Eighties, and another major difference between the 308 GTB and the 288 GTO, despite both having a V8 is the fact the latter had the engine mounted longitudinally, just like in the competition from Sant’Agata, the Lamborghini Countach LP500 S.

As you might expect, most of the Ferrari 288 GTO left the factory doors in Maranello finished in the classic Rosso shade, but there are a few others out there, and while this new era GTO might look like a 308 or 328 GTB to the untrained eye, there are quite a few major differences noticeable, like the deeper front bumper with four massive integrated lights below the turn signals, make no mistake, there are still two pop-up headlights too. The Ferrari 288 GTO’s distinctive features include wide wheel arches, massive Speedline rims, and exterior rearview mirrors.

The car also pays homage to the legendary Ferrari 250 GTO with its design cues. The 288 GTO is notably lighter than the 308 GTB due to its use of steel only for the doors, with the rest of the body panels made from lightweight Kevlar and carbon fiber. These features contribute to the car’s aerodynamic performance. Harry’s Garage on YouTube provides insights into the driving experience of the classic Ferrari 288 GTO after a 1,000 km drive and why he chose to buy a Zonda back in 2005 instead of the 288 GTO.

Image Source: Jarlat Maletych @ShutterStock

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