If we turn back the clock 15 years to the early days of the Hagerty Price Guide, the condition #1 (Concours, or best-in-the-world) value for a 1973 Dino 246 GTS was $135,000. Almost sounds cheap! Today it’s $420,000, an increase of 238 percent. Those old quips about Dinos not being “real” Ferraris are a way distant memory. These low-slung beauties now get the respect they really always deserved, and are a regular sight at high-end auctions and concours lawns. But in a timed online auction? Not so much. That’s why this lovely red Dino on Bring a Trailer caught our eye when it went up on the site, and when the bid timer finally hit zero on it this week, the price floored us.
At $635,000, it sold for more than 50 percent over our #1 value. Not only is it the most expensive 246 Dino sold in an online auction, it’s the most expensive 246 Dino sold at a public American auction of any kind. We’ve only seen earlier, much rarer 206 Dinos sell for more in the US. Over in Europe we have seen a couple of 246 cars bring more. A mostly original 246 GTS in a rare color sold in Monaco three years ago €533,750 ($637,885 at the time), and a one-owner 246 GTS sold in Italy four years ago for €529,000 ($636,969 at the time).
What’s even more surprising about this Bring a Trailer Dino is that despite its tip-top price, it isn’t a top-spec car. Keen Dino shoppers look out for the factory available Daytona-style seats and fender flares, aka “chairs and flares.” Either one can add to a car’s value and both together add a 20 percent premium in our price guide. But this Dino has neither chairs nor flares, nor is it a gleaming show car. A few paint flaws show in the photos as well as a (now repaired) split in one of the seats.
What the car does have going for it, though, is original US delivery, a rare original color (Rosso Bordeaux), factory air conditioning, low mileage (26,000), factory books and tool kit, a documented history, and all matching numbers. The Houston-based selling dealer is also a transparent and responsive one, and that counts for a lot when you’re throwing six figures at pixels on a screen.
Record prices don’t seem to last long in today’s market. Whether this is a case of two bidders getting carried away or a curve-setting result for the model, but anybody selling a Dino in the near future will probably have the link for this one bookmarked.
Incredible! As a young salesman/ lot boy (lol) at an exotic car rental store in Newport Beach, Cali in the 80’s I had the chance to “hotlap”, road trip, take to lunch all the exotic cars on the lot… One of the cars in my charge was a ’73 Dino Spyder Euro spec. Red over black, this was such an under appreciated great car… I was able to drive and at one point escape the police that took off after me as I was speeding through some “esses” by parking the car and walking casually away! It worked! I would have told the cop “I WISH that was my car” but never had the chance!
Later, I put the car up for sale in the LA Times (long before internet) and after lowering the price several times I sold it for…. READY???! $13,900 to a dealer in LA, Sam Black…
SO CHEAP but that was the market in the mid 80’s…
James, i lived in Corona Del Mar at that time 1983-84 and rented a new 380SL from you guys at the corner of PCH and Dover rd! I dated the cute receptionist! 10 years earlier i was working down up PCH at Beach Imports ( Alfa, Saab, Maserati) and went into the then Ferrari Dealer in Newport Beach ( Newport Imports Ferrari Jaguar) looking for a sales position , there was was a new , sold 74 246 gts maroon metallic with Tan/black inserts getting cleaned up for delivery window sticker …$14300!! Salesman said the husbands would buy a Daytona then come back and buy the wife a Dino…Chuck Iverson Porsche was a few miles down PCH and word was a new 911S was faster…
GT4’s are next……
Oh mein Got ! What a beauty. I’ve never seen one in this classy red. The very first time I saw a picture – in R&T – I was flabergasted. Coul’nt speak. My car crazy buddy in high schooled looked at me (in class of course) ans whispered WTF ? I showed him. Same reaction ! Our geography teacher – a car nuts himself – saw everything and took the magazine. ” You two, stay after my course.” He was himself impressed. The three of us talked cars for an hour then dismissed. “Yvon, if you don’t mind, I’d like to read it when you’re finished with it.”
He’s the coolest teacher I ever had !
PS He was driving a Datsun 1600 !