The Dino 308 GT4 was introduced at the Paris Motor Show in November 1973. The 308 GT4 finally gained the “Prancing Horse” badge in May 1976, which replaced the Dino badges on the hood, wheels, rear panel and the steering wheel. This has caused major confusion over the years by owners, enthusiasts and judges. During the energy crisis at that time many prospective owners were hesitant to buy such an expensive automobile not badged “Ferrari” being confused at the significance of the Dino name. Dino was Enzo Ferrari’s son who died in 1956, and his name was to honor his memory on the models it was placed.
In an effort to improve sales until the 1976 official re-badging, Ferrari sent out factory update #265/1 on July 1, 1975 with technical and cosmetic revisions in many areas. Some of these revisions were implemented piecemeal by dealers. Some made all the revisions while some just made a few. This leaves many 1975 GT4’s with a variety of modifications which are hard to document as “correct” to aficionados who may not understand the complicated series of events surrounding this model year. Some of the revisions included adding Prancing Horse badges, repainting in the Boxer two-tone scheme (lower half painted matte black), air conditioning fixes, etc. It also included bumper modification and exhaust changes for North American versions. The Dino 308 GT4 was the only Ferrari legally imported to the US in 1975, and it was also the year Niki Lauda won the Formula One drivers championship and Ferrari won the constructors title. The GT4 was the only 2+2 Ferrari ever raced with factory support.
There were two series of GT4; the earlier cars featured a twin distributor engine and foglamps mounted in the front valance. Later cars had a single distributor engine, with foglamps mounted behind the front grille.