The first Ferrari to catch Agnelli’s eye was the 166 MM Touring Superleggera at the 1948 Turin Motor Show. So taken was industrialist with what he christened the ‘barchetta’ (little boat), he commissioned on in two-tone blue and green colour scheme.
The customised navy interior would also become an Agnelli calling card, whilst ‘Barchetta’ entered the automotive vernacular as a word to describe open-top sportscars.
Also on show is a 1952 blue 212 Inter, complete with a magnolia white roof and extra powerful headlights, to serve Agnelli’s penchant for night-driving.
A particularly intriguing exhibit is the 1966 365 P Speciale berlinetta, designed by Pinifarina and featuring three seats, with the driver located centrally.
Agnelli was commissioning his own Ferraris right up until his death. His final request was a 360 Spider with a tiny aero screen, again giving the car the appearance of a Venetian water taxi somewhat. It wasn’t for him though – the Spider was presented to Ferrari chairman Luca Di Montezemolo as a gift.
Additionally present at the exhibition is the Ferrari F2003-GA F1 car. The car was named after Agnelli as a tribute to him one month after his death in January 2003.
‘Gianni Agnelli is Ferrari: Elegance of the Myth’ opens today online. Tickets are available at https://www.ferrari.com/it-IT/museums