The concept of the Ferrari Dino 246 GT was birthed with mixed emotions. A car designed in grief and despondency. The very heart of this car makes it like no other Ferrari, which were usually designed out of a competitive nature. This unique and exclusive Ferrari was named after founder Enzo’s son, Dino, who was a talented engineer for the company but died at age 24 of a rare genetic disease.
The Ferrari ‘Dino’ then was more than just a car, it was a tribute, and a touching one at that. This is what makes it an incredibly special car like no other, having a story behind it that anyone could sympathise with and get behind. That, topped with the cars other notable lineaments create quite the intrigue and charm with the car, two adjectives that time and time again so gracefully live with Ferrari.
‘Unlike some Ferraris that are quite ostentatious, the Dino is like the girl next door, classically beautiful yet elusive.‘
Unlike some Ferraris that are quite ostentatious, the Dino is like the girl next door, classically beautiful yet elusive. It is one of the prettiest cars from the Italian sports car powerhouse. Whilst it was of course inspired by his late son, other external influences also appear in this car.
The mid-mounted V6 engine was influenced by their national rival, the Miura, by Lamborghini, who were the first to mount engines in the middle. Race track cars had done this for some time but it was always thought to be too dangerous for production cars to have their engines this way. All high performance cars to this day have mid-mounted engines as a consequence of this revolution.
The V6 engine in the Dino was the first and last, however, in a Ferrari. The reason was that Ferrari had wanted to make a true competitor to the newly released Porsche 911 which the public were becoming drawn to because of its high end performance and style at a reasonable price. This had influenced Ferrari to make a cheaper model, hence the V6 engine. The engine was also a favourite of the late son, but improved fuel economy of engines at Ferrari meant that they could return to the classic V8, only making the Dino even more rare. This further added fuel to the magnetism of this car.
The Dino 246 is certainly one of the prettiest in Ferrari history but it does not belong in the category of the best performing. That would be truly asking too much as Ferrari has one of the richest pedigrees of high performing cars in automobile history. It also felt rather underpowered at 246 horsepower and in comparison to other cars of its caliber and price point. Notwithstanding, a top speed of 235 km/h is not to be sniffed at.
The interior is a nice point of the car giving it a feeling of opulence. The leather sports seats are comfortable and stylish while the carpeted floor offers sufficient space. Although overall space is quite modest, that is to be expected with mid-mounted engines because of the impact of their location
Only 2,300 Dino 246’s were made too, putting it into an exclusive category. They also don’t come cheap either, selling anywhere between $300,000 and $500,000.
The Dino 246 is not close to being Ferrari’s best performing, or most expensive but nor was it intended to be. The 246 was a eulogy to Enzo’s beloved son, knowing that this would be what he would have wanted, an improved version of its predecessor, the 206, with a V6 engine that could challenge the threat of the 911. The success of the 246 was indeed the ultimate tribute. It is car of mixed emotions, born from grief but created in celebration. The Dino 246 may not have been Ferrari’s most highest performing car, but it is one of it’s most memorable.