FERRARI 308

FERRARI 308

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TRACKDEMON

Original Poster:

11,036 posts

230 months

Friday 9th August 2002
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I've just gotten myself back into the work saddle and as a reward I think I might have to finally get the car I've always dreamed of: a FERRARI.
Much as I would love to get a 355 I dont want to wait until 2005 to realise my dream, and anyway I've always loved the look of the 308GTB and the feel of a classic 70's sportscar. My questions are thus:

I drive a 4.3 TVR Chimaera at the moment which is fab, but its not a Ferrari - will I be dissappointed by a 308 after the TVR?

The TVR's pretty usable (our only car right now), and seems to thrive on being 'used' - how would the 308 compare in this respect?

The 308 idea comes the amount of seemingly good ones around for 20k - how durable are these cars really and will I end up with a bag of (very pretty) rubbish for my money? Seems possible to get a 16 one from dealers on the continent so may go this way - LHD wouldn't bother me.

Any comments re driving and/or owning would be appreciated.. also would anyone like to take me out/let me have a go in one of these beautie's. I'm in SE1, and will come with the TVR - if your interested!!

Thanks for any comments. I REALLY want to be talked into getting one.

trefor

14,389 posts

252 months

Friday 9th August 2002
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I have a Chimaera and Nevpugh308 (another PHer) has er, a 308. We have both driven each others cars and to be honest they are both great.

As a TVR owner the 308 is much better than I thought it would be. Excellent build (compared to a TVR), plenty of cabin space (I'm tall too), nice gearbox and a great drive, fast but without the low-down torque of a TVR - it's a more revvy drive. I have to stir the Chimaera along hard to keep up with the 308 across country, although the TVR is quicker, but in the end it's all in the user. Most Ferarris seem to get driven like they're going to break, give 'em a bit of welly I say!

Disappointments of the 308 to me? Heavy clutch and not enough noise (but I'm spoilt with respects to the noise).

Running costs? TVR is probably a bit cheaper, but the Ferarri could be no more expensive if you spanner soem bits yourself.

So I'd say get a 308 if that's where your heart is. Just make sure it's a good one.

I'll let Nev comment some more ...

T/.

nevpugh308

4,381 posts

238 months

Friday 9th August 2002
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Oh, where do I start !

Agree with everything Tref said. A couple of additional points on his comments. It IS a revvy engine, even though it's a 3.0 V8. Remember redline is a touch under 8k, and all the power is 5k-8k (heard reports of some engines revving to 10k). But that's not a problem, it's not "dead" below 5k, say like a turbo, but in the same way you can't be lazy like you can with a big lump TVR.

The noise thing, well personally I love the high rev scream of the Ferrari engine. The reason why you get less noise is because everything is behind you, so a lot of the engine noise gets left "behind". You do, however (if you get a 70s carb model) get a glorious sucky sound from the air intakes when all 8 webber chokes get opened wide

Running costs : certainly a LOT less than a 355, especially if you're not too bad with a spanner. A std 3k service from a good specialist will cost about 400-500 GBP. Most other spares are "reasonable" in a Ferrari kind of way.

Day to day and usability ? Well, mine's a pampered little girl, so I can't comment too much. However, I have done 380 miles in one day going around Wales with not a problem, and last Sunday we went down to Brands Hatch (from the Midlands). On the way back we got stuck in some TORRENTIAL rain, and 2 traffic jams. It took us 5 hours to do a journey that normally takes 2h15. The car ? Took it in her stride, didn't even flinch or waver (despite the sky doing a good impression of a bath emptying !) Though my clutch foot was a bit achy (later QVs have lighter clutches, apparently). Carb 308's tend to prefer being used, otherwise they get a touch grumpy at cold start, but no big deal really (soon passes). Other than that they're like just any other car, with regards to being used / stored.

You will find it a touch slower than the 4.3, but it depends what you want out of the car. 308's are renown for their beautiful handling, and you'll certainly get a lot more comments and admiring glances (my wife likes to play the "he looked !" game as we drive along, which is okay but it gets a bit tedious after the first couple of hours of "he looked ... and she looked !" )

Price wise, well personally I wouldn't pay less than about 25k for one (but I'm a perfectionist !), but you can pick up perfectly good higher (50k+) mileage cars for a lot less money, and another thing that kills Ferrari prices in the UK is LHD .... if you can live with that, that'll knock 30% off the price.

Whatever you do GET A PROPER ENGINEERS / PRE PURCHASE INSPECTION ... worth every penny.

Email me offline if you want more info or to chat, but basically I love my old 308 to bits, and dont regret buying one in any way, shape or form. Big fan, so given the chance I will certainly try and talk you into one.

If you're in the Midlands (A42) you're welcome round for a spin.

Nev

>> Edited by nevpugh308 on Friday 9th August 16:46

nevpugh308

4,381 posts

238 months

456mgt

2,482 posts

235 months

Friday 9th August 2002
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quote:

p.s. : www.fugazi.co.uk/HTML%20pages/Ferrari/my308GTS.htm



Fantastic looking car and the best example of a 308 I've ever seen. It's spotless. Concours car?

TRACKDEMON

Original Poster:

11,036 posts

230 months

Friday 9th August 2002
quotequote all
Cheers Nev, What a beauty - that is possibly the best side profile of any car ever made, the lines are stunning and timeless and a whole lot of the reason I want one! The purist in me says buy a GTB (again prefer the lines) but I dont really mind if its a GOOD CAR. Think maybe I will miss the performance a little - 4.5ish to 60, 12ish to 100, 160mph+ (the 4.3's were VERY quick) with massive torque as you've said, but that's not what I'd be buying a 308 for anyway - just look at it. I've heard some horror stories about rust - what are the other main points to look at? And would you risk buying privately?

All I have to do now is get to the midlands for a spin ;-)

nevpugh308

4,381 posts

238 months

Friday 9th August 2002
quotequote all
Aw shucks guys, thanks

456 ... no, she's not a concours, just a "very good". She's got 31k on the clock now, doing about 2k a year with me. Very original, the only place I can find any welding is one 2"x2" patch by the side indicator (and I've been behind every panel there is .... handy having a space frame chassis )

Oh, BTW, you've just given Trefor some ammo ... he's always ribbing me about how anal I am with my cars, always cleaning them etc !

Trackdemon ... side profile, absolutely agree ! All 308's are good cars, but personally I prefer the earlier cars. Okay, they're a touch less reliable (carbs need tuning every year or two, generally grumpier to start when cold), but I prefer the sucky sound of the carbs (old school, me) and the 70's funky switch gear, and the "purer" looks (less spoilers etc). I also prefer the (original fitment) Michelin XWX tall profile "fat" tyres, which suprisingly handle incredibly well for such an old design.

GTB Vs GTS ? Well, hard one to call. I wanted a GTS coz I'd never had an open car before. Also I find the GTS with the top on (or a GTB) a touch clostraphobic (sp?). Also think they look very very pretty with the roof off, and the windows down ! However, the GTB is a touch stiffer in the body (with the top on you can hear/feel the body moving round the top a bit on a GTS) and coz they're rarer the GTB's fetch a slight price premium sometimes (esp the early fibreglass cars, the first 750 or so)

Privately ? Well, I bought my car from a specialist dealer, got a warrenty and everything, but then nothing went wrong with the car ! The important thing is to get a GOOD car (and I will reiterate here, you MUST get a report done, whether from a dealer or private, by an independent, preferably someone who knows these cars)

Rust, well they're space frame chassis cars (all tubes) and that rarely rots (I'm sure someone will contradict me now, with some horror story ! ). The early plastic cars dont rot, of course. You've got to remember that you're talking about a 15-25 year old car, made of 70's and 80's italian metal, so dont expect miracles (saying that, as I say, my car's barely been touched). Check the rear and front wheel arches, and the sills (if the seller will let you, jack up the rear of the car and take the fibreglass inner wheel arches out, you can see along the whole length of the inside of the sills then). Door bottoms are notorious too, check carefully. Apart from that, they're "okay" .... remember that the front lid (covers the spare wheel well) is made of aluminium, some rear decks are aluminium (dent easily whatever they're made of) and the following bits are fibreglass on ALL cars : drivers and passenger floor, front "clip" (below swage line and bumper, in front of front wheel, the front valence bit is what I mean), the rear "clip", rear inner wheel arches. The front inner wheel panels may rot out, but they're screwed in place and only made of some kind of alloy (they go white and dusty and crumble). Oh, check the tiny panel behind the front wheels too.

Random thoughts : Check for overheating. Expect 2nd gear to be notchy or impossible to get for first 5 minutes (Mobil 1 Synth gearbox oil helps this), as they say "they're all like that guv'nor !") Make sure it's got it's original alloys (if you want them) ... 400 to 500 quid each 2nd hand. Make sure all the toolkit and books are there.

I'll add more as I think of it ....
Nev

Trefor

14,389 posts

252 months

Saturday 10th August 2002
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quote:

GTB Vs GTS ? ... Also think they look very very pretty with the roof off, and the windows down ! ... Nev



I do too, but Nev never managed to grow the moustache and the chest hair to totally mimic Tom Selleck though ...

T/.

Ducks, grabs passport on way out door, leaves country.

nevpugh308

4,381 posts

238 months

Monday 12th August 2002
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Hey, I'll grow chest hair quite happily if it means I can go and live in Hawaii !!

nevpugh308

4,381 posts

238 months

Tuesday 20th August 2002
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http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?MfcISAPICommand=ViewItem&item=1759931674

TRACKDEMON ... could be a bargain, if you dont mind LHD.

Nev

TRACKDEMON

Original Poster:

11,036 posts

230 months

Thursday 22nd August 2002
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Did you have to do that!! God I want one. How quick can I sell a 4.3 Chimaera. Ah, EBay... Looks like I have to wait till Jan now (house move), still want to try one... maybe its time to blag a test drive. Maybe somebody'll talk me into finance

TRACKDEMON

Original Poster:

11,036 posts

230 months

Thursday 22nd August 2002
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I quite like this, almost makes me want to live Stateside. Cheap as chips, shame US export costs a fortune.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1851785867

nevpugh308

4,381 posts

238 months

Thursday 22nd August 2002
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Hmmm .... there's a reason why that car's cheap, it's only the injection model. Plus it's a US spec injection model. Um, not exactly the fastest thing going ....

The two cars to go for are the carb (255bhp) and QV (240bhp) ..... IMO stay clear of the i's .... luckily they only made a few before the QV came out.

nevpugh308

4,381 posts

238 months

Thursday 22nd August 2002
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Oh, also it's got the awful US huge bumpers ..... lots of US owners dump them for euro spec bumpers ... saves quite a few Kg !