The  Pyghtle


    we like older cars and innovative engineering















... a passion, a 1986 Ferrari 288 …

gto badge


288GTO front B


4.29 m long x 1.91 m wide x 1.12 m high, 2.45 m wheelbase, 1.59 m front track, 1.56 m rear track, near 50/50 distribution of 2557 lb 'dry' weight.  (… so quite different to a 308)


LHD 2-seat Berlinetta by Pininfarina, 0.38 Cd, utilising 'rosso' Kevlar composites and aluminium doors (some cars had steel doors) on a tubular steel space-frame created by Ferrari F1 designer Harvey Postlethwaite.

Looks fantastic even in negative ...

Double-click thumbnails below for a larger image


Leather trim, electric windows, radio and air conditioning make it reasonably civilized.


288GTO front Bneg




288 Cockpit

288 Cutaway

288GTO front wing

288 spare


All-round independent, double unequal-length wishbones, coil sprung, co-axial Koni damper suspension and anti-roll bars with servo-assisted (twin-pot at the front) Brembo ventilated discs, guided by rack and pinion steering, front 225-55ZR16 and rear 265-50ZR16 tyres on 5-spoke Speedline hub-nut split rims (8” front, 10” rear), which necessitates a very ‘temporary’ spare wheel/tyre in the nose, and twin 60 litre (for weight balance) rear fuel tanks.


The ‘Tipo’ F114B000 engine is based on the ‘268C’ engine, by designer Nicola Materazzi.

(a 2.65 litre unit, developed by Ferrari from the 308 Quatro-Valvole, which was to be used in the Lancia LC2 Group C car)


It is a longitudinally mid-mounted 90 degree alloy V8 (1-5-3-7-4-8-2-6 firing order), 80 x 71 mm over-square, 2855.08 cc, quad cam (16-48-54-10 timing), 32 valve, 7.6:1  CR, dry-sump, with twin low inertia IHI (Japanese) turbos giving 0.9 bar (~ 13 psi)

– but the last few production waste-gates were limited this to 0.8 bar (~ 11½ psi) however they can be adjusted !


Why 2855 cc ?

   to allow homologation for the 1983 Group B ( 4 litre GT ) competition class with the FIA turbo factor of 1.4
which gives 3997 cc equivalence, hence 'GTO' ... 'Gran Turismo Omologato'


The real benefit of these small turbos is their ability to spin up very quickly – they give 0.62 bar (~ 9 psi) at only 2500 rpm !

  so a real power surge, albeit at the expense of sheer top-end power (… more beneficial to the life of the engine), by utilising twin Behr 5167 intercoolers, stimulated by twin Weber-Marelli electronic injection and ignition systems, and cooled by a front radiator.


288 Engine

288 Manifold

288 Speedometer

288GTO right rear

288GTO mirror

288 Boot

288_above B

Transmission is via a Borg & Beck twin 216 mm dry plate clutch to a ZF 5-speed 'dog-leg' transaxle with 2.9:1 ratio limited slip differential.


This is all to lay down the power of 400 bhp @ 7000 rpm (will rev to 7700 rpm through the gears, & to 7500 rpm in 5th), with a torque peak of 365 lb. ft @ 3800 rpm (140 bhp per litre, 345 bhp/ton).


… so typically, when in new condition, capable of 190 mph/305 kph maximum speed, and:



0-60 mph :

4.9  seconds





0-100 mph :

10.2  seconds





0-125 mph :

15.2  seconds





0-150 mph :

29.9  seconds





SS ¼ mile :

12.6  seconds





All this from a design dating from 1983 !


paperGTOrear B

This car, widely considered to be the first ‘supercar’, differs from all subsequent supercars in that it was designed from the outset to be a racer, not a mere road car.   


It is one of only 272 made (… but 6 more were made as EVO variants and F40 prototypes), but when Group B was cancelled in 1984 (due to some horrific accidents with other makes) production continued past the minimum 200 homologation quantity mostly because they had already sold all of them before production even began, but also because its characteristics made it a leading-edge road car, as it is truly wonderful to be driven in – it is unbelievably glorious to drive with highly responsive precision steering and handling – plus incredible sound effects and sheer pace !


It is a handful in the wet not least because of the urgent power, but also due to questionable wipers; and whilst it has a neat 2.89 turns lock-to-lock, the turning circle of 39.4 feet coupled with a 1000 rpm idle speed and a very small turbo-lag, it does not exactly make for an ideal shopping car !



...  however, the 288GTO would not have been designed and built if the ORIGINAL and legendary 1962 Ferrari 250GTO had not existed
( which we could never afford, but hope to at least ride in before we die ! )


250GTO 1962

Ferrari UK Owners club



... a September 2018 auction for a '62 raised £41 Million (~US$56 Million), and it now resides in England