Just this past weekend, one example of the extremely rare Ferrari 340 Mexico Coupe (with only 3 units made) was sold at the RM Auctions event at Amelia Island for $4.3 million. It’s likely that it fetched a high price because of its striking appearance and its exclusivity. The coupe, whose chassis number is 0224 AT, has won several races. It has participated in the Carrera Panamericana Mexican road races. In fact, it took third place in the 1952 race.
Ferrari enthusiast and FCA co-founder Larry Nicklin had been the last to own this 340 Mexico Coupe. It is powered by a 280hp 4.1-liter V12 engine that is partnered to a five-speed manual gearbox. The power is distributed through a chassis that features a live rear axle.
This coupe was recently shown off in the Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg Museum in Auburn, Indiana, and also in April 1994 at Ken Behring’s Blackhawk Museum in Danville, California. RM Auctions released an official statement, saying that this coupe has “all the desirable requirements” that racing and Ferrari enthusiasts could expect.
It has an impressive racing history and it is eligible to join the world’s most desirable events (including Mille Miglia). It has had 10 owners and its “light, attractive body combined with Lampredi-designed V-12” make it truly stunning.
Charles Rezzaghi, a San Francisco Ferrari dealer, acquired 0224 AT in early 1954 and Kjell Qvale then advertised the car for sale in Road & Track. A resident of Hanford, California, Robert Rice, purchased the Ferrari 340 Mexico No. 0224 AT that spring and displayed the car at the 5th Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in April and at the Mount Diablo Country Club Concours in May. On March 20, 1955, 0224 AT then competed at a race at Stockton, piloted by George Sawyer.
The car was then returned to Chinetti Motors. Bill Galvin of Washington D.C. acquired 0224 AT for $3,500 – apparently for his wife --and stored the car at Rascal’s shop in Glen Cove, Long Island, New York. 0224 AT then spent almost 10 years with Lancia collector Tom Stewart of Waterford West Virginia. It appeared that 0224 AT underwent extensive engine and mechanical work under Stewart, who then sold it to Carl Bross – owner of Orange Blossom Diamond Ring Company in 1965 for $4,500.
The car changed hands in 1967 to Kirk White of Pennsylvania and to Everett Calvin Gleason of Detroit, Michigan. Gleason was able to equip the re-painted 0224 AT with a new interior, trim, single-plate clutch and other parts. The next year, Gleason found himself driving 0224 AT in the FCA meet at the Indianapolis Speedway.
0224 AT then gained the attention of the press and made the cover of Road & Track in May of 1969. Gleason then sold the car in 1971 to Dean Batchelor of Reno, Nevada. A Bonneville Salt Flat racer, Batchelor sold 0224 AT in 1975 to Harley Cluxton of Scottsdale, Arizona, who in turn passed the car to John Robertson of Big Fork, Montana.