The GTO is a dream, with its unique and unreservedly “pure” racing line that makes it look like its moving even when stationary.
But what’s it like to drive? What tricks does she have up her sleeve? To understand this, you have to get behind the wheel of the eClassic Simulators.
The track, of course, must be the right one, perhaps with some climbs and descents. Spa sounds perfect. Here, you will soon discover that in order to put in a great lap, you don’t need to push her all the way up to 8,000 rpm. The low torque of Maranello’s glorious V12 means you can exit corners and change gear at 7,000 rpm which keeps the car moving fluidly and under full control.
This wonderful characteristic of the car is combined with another requirement that requires some expertise but can be easily learned: as there is no ABS or other anti-lock systems, violent braking with the foot must be accompanied by engine braking with fast “downshifts” performed using the classic heel-and-toe technique to ensure the gears engage quickly. With the same knowledge of the tracks, these two “tricks” transform into seconds on every lap: try it and you’ll see.
But why GTO?
For those who do not know the reason for the name of this magical Berlinetta, allow us to explain. The 1961 regulations for Gran Turismo required at least 100 cars to be manufactured per year: when the certificate arrived with a telegram, the O from “omologato” (Italian for homologated) followed the initials GT. But that begs the question: how did they pull that off if only 36 GTOs were ever produced? Being smart in racing has always worked: the Ferrari 250 GT, first with a long wheelbase and then with a short wheelbase, existed in many variations and a lot of them were built.
What else was the 250 GTO if not a version? Bravo Enzo: Homologated!
Photo credit: Ferrari Media, Bonhams
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