Ferrari's wedge design dominated the 1980s and 1990s, and one of the cars it looks best on is the Ferrari 348 GTB. It comes from the Ferrari 348 lineage, often nicknamed the Ferrari Widowmaker, that succeeded the Ferrari 308 and Ferrari 308 in 1989. Along with the Ferrari 348 GTS, Ferrari re-engineered the Ferrari 348 GTB to fix handling issues in previous Ferrari 348s that, according to most journalists then, made the Ferrari 348 the worst car Ferrari ever made. It was said to want to drive you into a hedge rear end first, just like the Porsche 930 Turbo would if pushed even a little bit. To fix this, Ferrari enhanced handling in the Ferrari 348 GTB by tweaking the suspension and implementing weight reduction measures, ultimately resolving the issue and making driving more comfortable and confident for drivers than in previous production cars. But despite being hailed as the worst Ferraris of its time, the Ferrari 348 GTBs and other Ferrari 348s have the last V8 engine developed by Enzo Ferrari. Enzo's goal was to use V12s in Ferraris for as long as possible, but times changed, and he was forced to transition to V6 and V8 engines, which gave rise to the Ferrari Dino range. One contributing factor to the enduring shift was the United States' emission laws, which became too stringent during the 1980s. With Ferrari V12s being high-emission engines under the implemented laws, Ferrari had no option but to continue producing their cars with V8 engines to retain their market share in the United States. Luckily, the Ferrari 348 GTB's place in Ferrari's history doesn't affect its market value today. You can easily get one in mint condition for around $70,000, making it the perfect enthusiast's Ferrari. It has the looks and performance to match and a connection to Enzo Ferrari.
The Ferrari 348 GTB debuted in 1993, featuring subtle styling changes over older Ferrari 348 models and, most notably, more power and enhanced handling. It was the fifth model in the Ferrari 348 lineup introduced in 1989. Like other Ferrari 348s and a majority of previous Ferrari Models, the Ferrari 348 GTB's design was penned and built by Pininfarina, an Italian Coachbuilder who had a longstanding relationship and partnership with Ferrari from the Italian automaker's conception stages. With a wedge design first prominently noted in the Ferrari 365, the Ferrari 348 GTB was designed to be as aerodynamic as technology in the 1990s allowed. Other design elements make it even more aerodynamic than its predecessors, which we'll talk about in a bit. Inside, Ferrari preserved the allure of a GT car infused with luxurious accents, blending classic and contemporary elements from the 1990s to showcase a strong link to their heritage while embracing evolving design philosophies with unwavering commitment. Coming in towards the end of the Ferrari 348's production, Ferrari only made a handful of Ferrari 348 GTBs with production numbers totaling 222 units, all built between 1993 and 1994 at Ferrari's Factory in Maranello, Italy. Compared to the total number of Ferrari 348s made, it's among the models with the least production numbers since Ferrari built around 7,000 units between 1989 and 1994.
Positioned behind the cabin, the Ferrari 348 GTB has a 3.4-liter naturally aspired V8, which, during production, made about 320 horsepower. This is around 20 horsepower more than the standard Ferrari 348, which produced 296 horsepower from the same engine and was made possible due to an increased compression ratio, taller intake plenums, increased fuel pressure, altered camshaft timing, and a larger intake compensation valve. However, these upgrades did not increase the Ferrari 348 GTB's toque, as it remained at 239 lb.ft. The Ferrari 348 models were among the first to use a pressed steel monocoque chassis with a tubular steel rear subframe, which is lighter and has better rigidity than the full tubular chassis used in older models. However, Ferrari retained the rear-wheel-drive layout throughout production, including on the Ferrari 348 GTB. Power from the engine is transferred to the rear wheels via a 5-speed single-plate manual transmission. The new platform also enabled Ferrari to lower the engine in the chassis, enhancing performance and handling. The lightweight aluminum and steel body contributed to the same, which is evident in the Ferrari 348 GTB performance figures. It could do 0-60 mph in 5.4 seconds and achieve a top speed of slightly over 170 mph. Because of its lighter chassis and bodywork, the Ferrari 348 GTB boasts a considerably lower weight than its predecessors, tipping the scales at 3,241 pounds.
In Ferrari's words, the Ferrari 348 GTB's interior volumes and driver position were designed for maximum comfort given its sporty setup. The seats are made of leather from Connolly Leather, one of the best car leather manufacturers, before the company closed its business in 2002. Most Ferrari 348 GTBs we have seen still have leather seats. If you find one that doesn't, you should raise a question. Also, despite the car's age, the leather should still be as good as in 1993. Designed with a sports car focus, the seats in the Ferrari 348 GTB have enough upper body and lower body bolstering, kind of what you'd expect in modern bucket seats. Additionally, they were made with detachable headrests, unlike older models with fixed headrests embedded into the backrest. The high-quality leather on the seats extends to the center console and half of the dashboard, oozing luxury in its best attainable form in the 1990s. On the centre console, the gated manual transmission shifter in the Ferrari 348 GTB will catch any car enthusiast's eye as it's one of the best features in classic cars. A back knob sits at the top of the transmission shifter, complementing the black steering wheel with rigid plastic spokes reinforced with steel which Ferrari adopted in favor of the old steering wheel with metal spokes.
The Ferrari 348 has the iconic Ferrari wedge design common in the 1980s and 1990s, initially conceived to improve aerodynamics. However, it's also appealing, especially with so many Ferraris with the design making appearances in movies and TV shows such as the Ferrari Testarossa in Miami Vice, Ferrari 308 GTS in Cannonball Run and the Ferrari 308 Quattrovalvole in Magnum PI. However, through Pininfarina, Ferrari did away with the vents behind the doors and made the Ferrari 348 models rounder for improved aerodynamics and aesthetic appeal. At the front, you get pop-up headlights with the headlight covers beautifully integrated into the hood, almost disappearing when retracted. The front bumper adopts a minimalistic approach, containing only a fog light on each end and an immersed grille at the center. However, that's where the minimalism ends since the rest of the Ferrari 348 GTB takes an entirely different approach. The side profile features doors with air inlets to direct airflow to the rear-mounted radiators and assist in heat dissipation, thus cooling the engine. But besides their functional design, the vents also give the car a unique appeal, as does the mesh on the rear end covering the taillights that integrate the reverse lights and turn signals. A Ferrari prancing horse emblem between the taillights and quad-tip exhausts finishes the Ferrari 348 GTB's rear-end look in classical Ferrari styling.
In the 1990s, automotive technology was at its peak, and the Ferrari 348 GTB had the best the close of the 20th Century had to offer. Unlike in older models, air conditioning and a radio were standard features, so buyers didn't have to pay a premium for these. Most interior controls and functions were electrified, starting with the electronic central door locks, window switches, and the well-illuminated instrument cluster. To fix handling issues in previous Ferrari 348s, Ferrari widened the rear track, installed wider wheels for extra traction, and revised the suspension geometry. Additionally, the fuel tank was made smaller in the Ferrari 348 GTB, thus enhancing the car's weight distribution. Another reason Ferrari decreased the fuel tank size is to allow space to improve chassis rigidity. Driver-assist features were not that common in the 1990s, which is something that enthusiastic drives love about classic cars. The connection they offer to the road is almost unattainable in today's cars. However, the Ferrari 348 GTB was sold with ABS like most cars, but Ferrari added Servo Assist, a power steering system enhancing the ease of steering.
With only 222 units built, the Ferrari 348 GTB is one of the cars whose low production numbers don't affect its market value. Prices are reasonably low, averaging $70,000 for a clean, well-kept unit, but there is a high chance a market shift might occur, and the Ferrari 348 GTB will shoot up in value. So, if you had the money sitting and needed a sign to buy one, take this as it. If you'd like to buy a Ferrari 345 GTB, 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.
The Ferrari 348 GTB is among the most underrated 20th Century Ferraris, appearing just as Ferrari put the last Enzo-designed V8 into their cars. Its contemporary design and wild performance, which might have made it an enemy to journalists, are what it's loved for today by enthusiasts. Also, its affordability makes it a favorite among enthusiasts as it's one of the most affordable iconic Ferraris. Exotic Car Trader creates an exclusive and safe way of buying and selling cars, eliminating the daunting experiences of private selling for buyers and sellers. Every vehicle listed on Exotic Car Trader goes through a private seller verification process, ensuring legitimacy for our buyers. Also, Exotic Car Trader's car buying process is well outlined, with all fees and packages providing our buyers with a seamless and inclusive experience. We can handle the escrow of funds at no additional cost to the buyer and seller, and we also provide trade-in and financing options for buyers. For transaction safety, our Transactions Team is world-class and equipped with industry fraud detection tools to ensure a safe and secure transaction. These are just some of the benefits you enjoy when buying or selling on Exotic Car Trader. Contact us for listing services or to buy a car on Exotic Car Trader today! It looks good, has an excellently crafted interior, and has the performance to match its characteristics. What other reason do you need to buy a Ferrari 348 GTB?
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