Ferrari Enzo meets Pininfarina

American Ferrari collector commissions re-bodied Enzo – at a total cost of $4 million

What do you do if you don’t like the looks of your Ferrari Enzo? If you’re New York-based Ferrari enthusiast James Glickenhaus, you have it shipped to Italy and get Pininfarina to rebody it for you at an estimated cost of $3m (plus $1m for the donor Enzo).

Glickenhaus, a former B-movie director, writer and producer (you may remember the ultraviolet schlockfest The Exterminator - "If you're lying, I'll be back") who went on to enjoy considerable success as a Wall Street fund manager, commissioned Pininfarina Special Projects to create a modern interpretation of the classic Ferrari 330 P3/4 sports racer from the mid-1960s. To illustrate his brief, Glickenhaus sent his own P3/4, valued in the region of $10m, to Pininfarina.

The American got Pininfarina to source the Enzo base car for the project, tracking down a zero-mile, US-spec model still wrapped in the protection in which it was delivered from Maranello. The Enzo’s dynamic hardware was left largely untouched except for some retuning of the suspension to compensate for a lower ride height and kerb weight.

Although Glickenhaus was very particular about how he wanted the P4/5 (as it is now called) to look, and supervised the design and development all the way through, Pininfarina’s Jason Castriota was responsible for the styling. Castriota’s other work includes the Maserati Birdcage 75th concept car and the Ferrari 599 GTB, so Glickenhaus’s project was in good hands.

In a curious piece of gamesmanship, the American leaked details of his car on a Ferrari web forum throughout its development, revealing enough about its looks that many speculative drawings of it were produced in the press, yet keeping its actual styling a secret until now, just prior to its launch.

The finished item is a stunning effort, reminiscent of the 330 P3/4 without slavishly adhering to its lines, and with its flowing curves making the Enzo seem slabby and utilitarian in comparison. Some of the detailing is gorgeous, such as the two white, ceramic-coated tailpipes that emerge from the upper deck of the tail, and the way the dark tinted windscreen, roof and engine cover create a single swooping feature on top of the scarlet bodywork. The 20in wheels are striking, too, and are milled from solid alloy billets.

Of course, creating bespoke bodywork to sit upon exotic mechanicals is an integral part of the heritage of the Italian design houses – or carrozzerias as they were once called – but the likes of Pininfarina have since evolved into automotive engineering consultancies, so the work that has gone into Glickenhaus’s car extends far beyond simply creating a pretty body for it.

The new, all-carbonfibre bodywork was honed inside Pininfarina’s own wind tunnel, with the result that the P4/5 boasts a lower drag figure than the Enzo yet retains a similar amount of downforce. And, impressively, it’s almost 200kg lighter than the Enzo.

The interior has also been overhauled, with bespoke seats, a full roll-cage, an advanced on-board fire extinguisher system and even improved air-conditioning. As Glickenhaus says, ‘I was looking for a real car, not simply a show car.’ That said, the car was due to make its world debut at the swanky Pebble Beach concours event in the States during August.

This isn’t the first time that a design house has created a Ferrari-based special – Pininfarina made the 612 Kappa for another American enthusiast, Peter Kalikow, earlier this year, while Japanese collector Yushiyuki Hayashi commissioned Zagato to produce the 575 GTZ concept last year – but rarely does Ferrari give them the official nod of approval. This time, however, the men from Maranello must have been impressed, for not only have they given the thumbs-up for the Glickenhaus car to wear the prancing horse badge, they’ve granted permission for the car to be officially called ‘Ferrari P4/5 by Pininfarina’. For a Ferrari enthusiast as patently passionate as Glickenhaus, this is surely the ultimate endorsement that he’d made the right choice when he teamed up with Pininfarina.

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