Praised as one of the most usable classic Ferraris because of its durability, appreciating history, and classical aesthetics, the Ferrari 328 first appeared in 1985 as a successor to the Ferrari 308, which had retained the title of the best-selling Ferrari in its ten-year production run. The Ferrari 328 GTS (Grant Turismo Spider) is a targa top variant of the Ferrari 328 GTB (Gran Turismo Berlinetta). Both cars use the third-generation Dino V8 Ferrari, which Ferrari Enzo was highly against when the Italian automaker started marking cars since Enzo's goal was to make cars with V12 engines. The Ferrari 308 didn't see significant changes until towards the end of its production when Ferrari introduced a four-valve per cylinder engine in the Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole in 1982. This engine was carried over to the Ferrari 328 GTS and GTB but with increased displacement to 3.2 liters, among other upgrades that enabled it to make more power than the 308. Consequently, this made the Ferrari 328 a much better car during production and makes it a favorite among enthusiasts today. However, Tom Selleck's diehard fans would pick the 308 GTS Quattrovalvole any day. The Ferrari 328 GTS enjoys greater affection today mainly because of its targa top, which is why Ferrari made and sold more of it than the 328 GTB. Luckily, that doesn't affect its prices much since today, you can easily pick one up for less than $100,000, which is the price threshold for most classic Ferraris. However, the 328 GTB's production numbers make it more valuable at around $50,000 more than the 328 GTS. Would you buy a Ferrari 328 GTS over a Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole similar to the one used in Magnum PI?
The Ferrari 328 GTS was introduced alongside the Ferrari 328 GTB to succeed over the Ferrari 308 GTS, which heavily influenced the 328 GTS. Despite Ferrari adding more power to the Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole, customers still demanded more power, and given the pressure that Ferrari had from other competitors, they knew they had to make the Ferrari 328 GTS stand out. This resulted in more power, a more aerodynamic body, and an upgraded interior design with better comforts and controls. Additionally, the 328 GTS has a better build characteristic with its body-colored bumpers and sharper styling, staying in touch with design trends during its time. The performance, interior, and exterior design upgrades are some of the factors that made the 328 GTS a better car overall for buyers despite it being less rigid due to the targa top. In the 1980s, car manufacturers, Ferrari included, didn't account for rigidity and body strength loss when making convertibles. As a result, open-top cars, in this case, the Ferrari 308 GTS, lost some handling characteristics compared to their coupe counterparts. In the Ferrari 328 GTS' four years of production from 1985 to 1989, Ferrari made 6068 units before ending production and replacing it with the 348 GTS in 1989. The production numbers of the Ferrari 328 GTS were over five times more than the Ferrari 328 GTBs made since Ferrari only made 1,344 328 GTBs within the same period as the 328 GTS. Yet both cars were produced at Ferrari's Maranello plant in Italy.
The Ferrari 328 GTS comes with a quattro valve 3.2-liter V8 engine derived from the 3.0-liter quattro valve V8 engine in the Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole but with increased power output to 270 horsepower. The increase in displacement is the main factor that resulted in the power increase. Also, Ferrari used a new Italian electronic ignition system made by Marelli, which enhanced timing and spark energy production more than the older ignition system, thus increasing horsepower. Like the Ferrari 308 and most Ferraris before it, the Ferrari 328 GTS is rear-wheel drive, with the rear wheels getting power from the engine through a 5-speed synchromesh manual transmission. The engine, transmission, and lighter body on the Ferrari 328 GTS enable it to reach 60 mph from a standstill in roughly 5 seconds, giving customers the performance they craved. Top speed is limited to 165 mph, which is impressive for a mid-range supercar made in the 1980s. As part of the 1988 update, Ferrari installed the first ABS in the Ferrari 328 GTS, which led to a suspension and brakes upgrade. For the suspension, the 328 GTS got an improved suspension, providing better ride comfort and handling, and the disc brakes on all four corners got vented disc brakes, enhancing the car's overall performance. But despite these upgrades, the Ferrari 328 GTS weight remained unchanged at 2,784 pounds.
The interior of the Ferrari 328 GTS retained a similar layout to the 308's interior, but it was more focused on being more comfortable, ergonomic, and somewhat practical. Some changes include new designs for the seat panel upholstery and stitching, revised door panels with storage compartments, and the manual switch controls being updated to electronic controls on the center console. The extra gauges on the center console were also moved to the dashboard for a much cleaner look. Everything else, including the gated manual shifter, is similar to the 308 GTS, but you might notice a reduced use of leather in the 328 GTS. However, it doesn't mean it's less luxurious. Ferrari just removed leather from the areas where it was unnecessary, such as on the dashboard, which is bare, hard plastic. The floor mats are plain, but there's nothing to complain about since they are meant to be stepped on.
Ferrari loved Pininfarina's design of the Ferrari 308 GTS, so they carried the wedge shape design over to the 328 GTS, only changing a few designs and softening it. Resembling the 308 GTS Quattrovalvole, the Ferrari 308 GTS side profile is characterized by louvers behind the door to enhance air circulation in the cabin and a vent sitting beneath it. Ferrari had dropped the use of chrome, so the 328 GTS, like a few other Ferraris before, doesn't have a chrome strip running across the length of the car. A subtle but notable change for those with a keen eye is that the Ferrari 328 GTS has body-colored bumper bars and window and door trims. The only thing not body colored was the aerofoil on top of the B-pillar in Japanese market units, which was left black. At the front, you get a sharper sloping bumbler, which enhances aerodynamics, and the hood on the 328 GTS doesn't have obnoxious vent openings like the hood on the 308 GTS Quattrovalvole. Still, Ferrari retained the pop-up headlights and changed the lower bumper design to accommodate the larger fog lights. Also, the lower bumper has a more prominent grille than the compact one on the 308 GTS. The rear fascia design also remained unchanged from the 308 GTS, with the only difference being a lower bumper trim covering the exhaust backbox, an eyesore on the Ferrari 308. The quad-tip exhausts are well positioned on the bumper trim, and they’re not chromed.
Undoubtedly, the 1980s were not revolutionary for car technology, but whatever was available was far more than needed. In the Ferrari 328 GTS Ferrari 328 GTS, you get power windows and doors. Additionally, buyers could opt for a radio and air conditioning, necessary during the scorching summers or extremely unbearable winters. In 1988, the Ferrari 328 GTS became among the first Ferraris that Ferrari made and sold with ABS, which enhanced handling. Additionally, in the same year, the wheels on the 328 GTS were upgraded to an updated style alloy convex wheels, which were lighter, and these were standard on all cars made after 1988.
Due to high production numbers, the Ferrari 328 GTS has a relatively low value in today's classic car market. Prices average $70,000, but they can go higher or lower depending on the condition and spec of the car. For example, a low mileage Ferrari 328 GTS in pristine condition would easily sell for prices well above $100,000 since it's not often you come across such. On the other hand, units in fair condition can sell for anything between $30,000 and $60,000. If you're in the market for a Ferrari 328 GTS, you might find one listed on Exotic Car Trader, so ensure you watch out for our Ferrari listings. Also, we list all sorts of classic cars, so give us a call if any of Exotic Car Trader's classic car listings entice you.
Though not among the most famous classic Ferraris, the Ferrari 328 GTS's enduring appeal continues to captivate enthusiasts. What makes it appeal most is its wedge design and being among the first Ferraris to get the Dino V8 with four valves per cylinder, it's also desirable among enthusiasts who want to get more than the original 270 horsepower.
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The Ferrari 328 GTS emerges as an iconic piece in Ferrari's history, celebrated among enthusiasts for its durability, storied lineage, and timeless design. Representing a coveted era where cars were as simple as they are, the Ferrari 328 GTS will remain an icon for ages to come.
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