Save Ferris.  Ferrari 250GT California offered for sale at auction

Save Ferris. Ferrari 250GT California offered for sale at auction

It is so choice. If you have the means I highly recommend picking one up


Perhaps the most iconic ‘celebrity’ Ferrari of all time is the Rosso Corsa 250 GT California Spyder owned by Cameron Fry’s father in the 1986 classic movie, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

That car, a replica acting as one of 58 SWB Spyders, is considered one of the most collectible Italian thoroughbreds ever produced, with an unrestored ‘barn find’ example crossing the auction block in 2015 for a staggering €16.23m (A$24m) .

If you remember your movie quotes, however, Cameron claims his father’s car is so rare that “less than 100 were made”, and while that is true of the short-wheelbase Spyder, a further 50 long-wheelbase examples, like this car, formed the initial run of open-top 250s from 1957 through to 1960.



Designed by Carrozzeria Scaglietti for the American market (hence the California name), the 250 GT Spyder offered an open-top grand touring with a luxurious cabin, generous luggage space and even an optional hard top for all weather conditions.

Powered by a 177kW/265Nm 3.0-litre Columbo V12 with triple Webber carburettors, this 1958 Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder is the 14th of 50 cars produced.

Like the Ferris Bueller car, it is also finished in Rosso Corsa red with a tan interior. Chassis number 1077 GT comes with a complete and detailed history, original tool roll and plenty of (no doubt scary) receipts to account for its immaculate condition, some 64 years after rolling off the line at Maranello.



So iconic is the 250 GT Spider, that many less-rare but still expensive Ferrari 250GT/E coupes (about 1000 made) have given up their original bodies to be converted to the open-top specification.

The 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California from the Ferris Bueller movie was a step even further away, being a replica ‘Modena Spider’ constructed from a modified MG chassis for the film. The car was sold at auction in 2010 for A$138k, about 200-times less than the price of an original.

While the LWB variants of the 250 GT California are rarer, they command the about half the prices of their shorter counterparts, with this example expecting to fetch between $7- and $8.5m (A$10-12.5m) when it is auctioned at Monterey on 20 August 2022.



James Ward

James has been part of the digital publishing landscape in Australia since 2002 and has worked within the automotive industry since 2007. He joined CarAdvice in 2013, left in 2017 to work with BMW and then returned at the end of 2019 to spearhead the content direction of Drive.

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