When the 308 GTB Quattrovalvole was introduced in 1982, the world was buzzing with the success of NASA’s new space shuttle program and the charm of the actor who became president. It was a time of technological leaps and muddled optimism, and that also applies to the motoring world. See speckled day specification. Is not she beautiful?
Of course, the Ferrari 308 GTB Quattrovalvole arrived as a technological answer to the tightening of emissions standards in the United States. With restrictions reducing power from the GTB’s 2.9-liter mid-engine, the engineers gave the 1982 variant four valves per cylinder, delivering a car to the Paris Motor Show that produced 240 horsepower at 7,000 rpm. It was good for 60 mph in 6.7 seconds and a top speed of 165 mph. Work is still seen.
The basics also remain unchanged. The GTB remained the purest car, but the Targa top GTS was a favorite despite losing its roof, the performance on paper was the same. The berlinetta used a tubular frame body where Ferrari attached the transverse engine and body, borrowed from the previous Dino, as well as the stunning Daytona and Berlinetta Boxer. The Pininfarina’s final look, with its pop-up headlights and extended side intakes, was perfect for the Miami Vice era. It was fast and handled brilliantly.
Being a Ferrari, the 308’s talents were tested in competition, with the Group 4 rally cars succeeding the Group B version, developed by specialist Ferrari dealer Michellotto, and approved for use on the world stage in 1982. The car won several races in its class, and could have been A steroidal version of the Group B called the 308 GT/M would have succeeded, had the class been banned in 1987. It wouldn’t have been far from finished, with a 3.0-liter V8 longitudinally mounted in a mid-rear position for better balance. I climbed into the Fiorano faster than the F40.
Although it has never seen competition, claims like this mean that even when the Evolutionary 308 succeeded the 328 in 1985, it remained a true label maker. We’d argue that few examples of the 308 fit the bill better than today’s Spotted, a GTS finished in Argento silver with a red leather interior that proudly boasts a gated guide. Those shiny five-spoke alloys, removable Targa case and prominent quad exhaust pipes make it the kind of 308 you’d see on the bedroom wall. Or rolling down Fleet Street.
In subsequent years a 308 became relatively feasible when values fell to as low as £25,000 in 2010. Needless to say, prices have been trending north since then, with prices for good cars now starting at more than double that. For the best of things, like our 1984 car here, it’s triple that — and the rest. Which means we can say with confidence that the opportunity to get a deal has long passed. The 308 is now a car to look forward to, just as it was in the era it portends.
Ferrari 308 GTS QV | Customize
engine: 2927 cc, V8
Transmission: 5 speed manual, rear wheel drive
power (hp): 240 at 7000 rpm (standard)
Torque (lb-ft): 192 at 5000 rpm (standard)
Carbon Dioxide: Unavailable
First registration: 1984
Registered miles: 46000
new price: Unavailable