Pirelli is Making a Period Correct Tire for all 36 Ferrari 250GTOs
It is difficult to think of a more beautiful sports racing car than the Series 1 Ferrari 250 GTO with its long hood and short Kamm tail, those Borrelli wire wheels with knock-off hubs and the 3.0-liter V12 under the hood with its 6 Weber carburetors.
Although I did not think that in 1969 when I could have bought 1 for $11,000. My choice was the Lusso 250GT that I was driving back then.
But, today seeing a 250 GTO anywhere is super, and seeing 1 on the track, its real home is really super.
Pirelli (MI:PIRC, OTCMKT:PPAMF) appreciates this, and in an effort to help keep more of these cars on the track and out of the walls of various racing circuits, it has designed a tire specifically for the most expensive cars in the world that looks period correct but full of modern tire building technology, it is called the Stelvio Corsa,
The Ferrari 250 GTO was built as a homologation special.
Meaning that, in order to participate in certain race classes, Ferrari had to produce a certain number of road-going cars to be sold to the public.
Homologation specials are not unique to Ferrari, as most manufacturers who race have them, and they are always very Super cars.
Ferrari built 36 250 GTOs in 2 body styles, and thanks its looks and serious racing records, the cars have gone on to become some of the most valuable cars in the world, with one example selling at auction for $38.1-M. And a rumored private treaty transaction of nearly $60-M.
So, you ask: How can a tiremaker like Pirelli justify the expense of developing and manufacturing a bespoke tire for a car of which only 36 were made?
Passion is the Key, a racing is so integral to Pirelli that it’s created a series of special tires for significant cars built between Y’s 1950 and 1980 called Pirelli Collezione.
In addition to the Stelvio Corsa, Pirelli has created the Cinturato 72 for Maserati as well as both the P7 and CN36 for Porsche and the P5 for Jaguar.
The Stelvio Corsa looks like a period-correct tire from the early 1960’s, but as we all know tire technology has come a long way since the 60’s.
The engineering team behind the Stelvio Corsa carefully studied photographs from the archives of the Pirelli Fondazione to get the look just right while utilizing modern compounds to dramatically increase wet weather performance and overall grip.
And, since this tire was designed for just 1 car, the designers had to ensure that the performance characteristics did not change the nature of the car too much.
Have a terrific weekend.