Lone Survivor: 1995 Ferrari F50

“Without a doubt the most special F50 that RM Sotheby’s has ever offered.”

RM Sotheby's

The Ferrari F50 has a complicated legacy. It launched in 1995, something of a transitionary period at Maranello, and didn’t exactly set the world on fire. Too divisive, critics said, and too friendly. The F50 represented a major change of pace from the belligerent (and beloved) 288 GTO and F40 that came before. Britain’s CAR Magazine noted during its first test that the new car was “less brutal, less fast even, than one or two of its predecessors.”

The penultimate line of that review: “Perhaps the hypercar era really is ending.”

RM Sotheby's

Decades on, the F50 might finally get its due. Today, the engineering (aero-grade carbon tub, pushrod suspension, motor mounted directly to chassis) seems prophetic. The engine (8500-rpm, 4.7-liter V12, based on Ferrari’s 1990 F1 car) feels like a relic from better times. Crank windows, manual steering, three pedals, plus no turbos, traction control, four-wheel drive or four-wheel steering. That’s not to mention the rarity.

Ferrari built more than 1,300 examples of the F40. But the F50? Just 349, of which 55 were made for the U.S. Two of those were painted Nero black, and one was crashed a few years back. Which means the car you’re looking at here, Chassis No. 104092, is this country’s only legit black F50.

RM Sotheby's

It’s also pristine. The odometer reads 2,090 miles, and the car comes with nearly all of its original accessories. That includes the original hardtop (still wrapped, in-box), factory luggage (unopened), canvas top (unused), plus two sets of keys, car cover, and tool kit. RM Sotheby’s says this Nero black car “ranks amongst the rarest of modern Ferraris” and is “without a doubt the most special F50 that RM Sotheby’s has ever offered.”

Unsurprisingly, the pre-auction price estimate reflects those statements. Expect this black F50 to bring around $3.25M when it goes to auction in Arizona later this month. Check out the listing on RM Sotheby's website here.