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New addition to the Automobiliac Stable

You may have noticed an uptick in posts about the Ferrari Dino GT4. And this is the reason for that.  I was idly searching for a FIAT Dino Coupe on craigslist and happened upon this Black GT4 which I suddenly realized I desperately wanted. 

I wasn't in the market for a car, per se, but I found myself dialing the number in the ad and asking questions of the seller.  It turns out the car is actually a very rare model called the 208 GT4.  This was an Italy-only car of which only about 840 were made.  The 208 was created to take advantage of tax laws in Italy on cars over 2 Liters in displacement. So Maranello de-bored the 3L V8 from the 308 GT4 down to 2L.  This decreased the horsepower, but they did change the cams to compensate somewhat.

The best part of the 208, apart from the fact that it came with the European bumpers, is that the grilles on the front and rear decklids are finished in silver, not black. With this 208 in black, the contrast is just marvelous!  The dashboard of the 208 was also black metal rather than matte silver.After a few weeks of slow, steady discussion with the seller, my mechanic and I trailered it away.  Then the car had a 3 week stay at the mechanic while he replaced the fluids, timing belts, and cam cover gaskets. We also fitted new Vredestein tires.

Now that the car has been mechanically sorted, it's really a joy to drive.  The exhaust note is fantistic too! You'll be seeing a lot more of it in these pages in coming weeks and months.  And don't worry, The GTV6 is still alive and well.  And it's still being driven regularly!

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    Musings about cars, design, history and culture - Automobiliac - New addition to the Automobiliac Stable
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    Musings about cars, design, history and culture - Automobiliac - New addition to the Automobiliac Stable

Reader Comments (23)

I'm not a Ferrari guy (I own a Biturbo and X1/9, I miss my Alfa Milano) but I really like the GT4. It is probably one of my favorite Ferraris, next to the 288 GTO of course. Congrats on the purchase.
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterm4ff3w
Thanks a lot, man!
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBradley Price
Congratulations on the new purchase! Looking forward to reading your thoughts and seeing your photos on this new, unique, special car.
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commenternsk
Gorgeous. Well done good sir!
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRustan
Looks great. Are those US side marker lights glued on or drilled on? I think it would look better without, and the feds won't bother you if you take them off now.

Tom Tanner/Ferrari Expo 2013-Chicago March 2013
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterF1 Tommy
I think they are screwed on, but using the original holes from the much smaller euro ones...it's on my list of things to do eventually!
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBradley Price
Congrats! Awesome find!
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMurph
enjoy in good health, bud!
July 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermotoringconbrio
I was looking over the specs on the 208GT4 and it is rare. They only made 840 for the Italian market from 1974/75-1980. The engine is smaller than your GTV6 at 1991cc, so it only had 170hp and weighed 3200lbs. The Euro side lights are round and only on the front.For engine parts the 208 GTS also has the same basic motor(also rare and made up to 1982). Parts might be hard to find so baby it and good luck. It's an interesting car.

Tom Tanner/Ferrari Expo 2013-Chicago March 2013
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterF1 Tommy
Correction, it's weight is 2950lbs, about 400lbs more than your GTV6.

Tom Tanner/Ferrari Expo 2013-Chicago March 2013
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterF1 Tommy
I have a Alfa book that says the GTV6 weighed 2610lbs, but that might be based on the Euro versions weight. I rounded up to 400lbs since I am not sure of the accuracy of the 2950lbs figure on the 208GT4. The 308GT4 weighs 3200lbs and is almost the same car. Cylinder liners would add weight on the smaller cc version. Also the Alfa has 2400mm and the 208GT4 2550mm. Have fun with the car.

Tom Tanner/Ferrari Expo 2013-Chicago March 2013
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterF1 Tommy
Parts aren't that bad on these cars, as 98% of them are the same as the Mondial and the 308. The engine was rebuilt about 4 years ago, so I am not worried about sourcing new pistons or anything 208-only for a very long time. Yes, the power to weight ratio isnt all that different from the GTV6. The feeling inside the cars is totally different though. The Alfa is better in tight twisty roads, but the Dino is built for fast sweeping bends. Overall the Alfa is more usable both on road and track, but doesn't compare to the exotic, visceral feel of the Dino. It also has a remarkably refined ride on the highway. Just soaks up bumps. I am very impressed with the Dino's chassis.
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBradley Price
Great purchase, and I'm very jealous.

Also, I co-own a BiTurbo, am also not really a Ferrari fan (although I make a few exceptions) and would love to own a Milano/75.
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBiTurbo228
Ecco, finalmente! Che bellissima macchina! Buona fortina. Posso avere un giro qualche volta?
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGaetano Tessoni
Awesome 208! Looks like a great car. The Bertone design is one of my favorites. Hope to see it out on the road sometime.
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjohnei
Mi dispiace. Sono sbagliato. Desidero dicere 'Buona fortUna'.
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGaetano Tessoni
Grazie mille Gaetano.
July 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBradley Price
good on ya mate. A very handsome friend for the GTV6.

I was just thinking about the 2L V8 the other day on a drive back from work. I would love to hear how it sounds. If you ever are up in the Berkshires you have to stop by. I'll buy lunch!

Again, good job and enjoy!
July 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDaniel
Hey Daniel,
I'll be at Lime Rock with the car this saturday, which is sort of in your neck of the woods. If you or anyone else wants to say hello, please stop by!
July 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBradley Price
Lovely - especially with the european bumpers. Wasn't this car on ebay at some point?
July 21, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterd reeves
Thanks, but no the car was not on ebay. There was recently another black GT4 on ebay with front end damage that failed to meet reserve.
July 21, 2012 | Registered CommenterBradley Price
It really wears black well.
July 28, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjaacco

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