1977 – 1980 Ferrari 308 GTS

In 1977 Ferrari launched a Targa-top version of their 308 GTB known as this 308 GTS. It was this car which was made famous in Magnum, P.I. starring Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum, a private investigator driving a bright red Ferrari 308 GTS. 

Launched at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1977, the targa topped 308 GTS was introduced. Visually it was very similar to its 308 GTB berlinetta apart from the black finished solid removable glass-fibre roof panel, and the satin black finished hinged opening louvre panels over the rear quarter windows. The chassis was reinforced in key places to compensate for the lack of a full roof rigidity.

Performance was similar to that of the 308 GTB. The V8 engine was identical to 308 GTB. It was a naturally aspirated V8 with  90 degree configuration, belt driven twin overhead camshafts per bank and 2.9 liters in capacity. The engine was transversely mounted in unit with the all synchromesh five speed transmission. Power was about 255 horsepower. European market cars were fitted with dry sump lubrication, whereas Australian, Japanese and USA market examples had wet sump lubrication.

The 308 GTS featured a steel body with an aluminum front lid, whilst USA market cars can be identified by heavier bumper assemblies, and rectangular side marker lights on the wings. The main European market 308 GTS models had a tubular steel chassis. Disc brakes, with independent suspension via wishbones, coil springs, and hydraulic shock absorbers, were provided all round, with front and rear anti roll bars. Production ran from 1977 to 1980.

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1977→1980 Ferrari 308 GTS

Specs & Performance

submitted by Richard Owen
type Series Production Car
production years 1977 – 1980
released at 1977 Frankfurt Motor Show
built at Maranello, Italy
engine V8
valvetrain DOHC 4 Valves / Cyl
displacement 2926 cc / 178.6 in³
bore 81 mm / 3.19 in
stroke 71 mm / 2.8 in
compression 9.2:1
power 179.0 kw / 240.0 bhp @ 7000 rpm
specific output 82.02 bhp per litre
bhp/weight 186.63 bhp per tonne
torque 245.4 nm / 181.0 ft lbs @ 5000 rpm
body / frame Steel Body over Tubular Frame
driven wheels Mid Engine / RWD
front tires 205/70VR-14
rear tires 205/70VR-14
front brakes Vented Discs w/Vacuum Assist
rear brakes Vented Discs w/Vacuum Assist
front wheels F 35.6 x 19.0 cm / 14.0 x 7.5 in
rear wheels R 35.6 x 19.0 cm / 14.0 x 7.5 in
steering Rack & Pinion
curb weight 1286 kg / 2835 lbs
wheelbase 2340 mm / 92.1 in
front track 1460 mm / 57.5 in
rear track 1460 mm / 57.5 in
length 4230 mm / 166.5 in
width 1720 mm / 67.7 in
height 1120 mm / 44.1 in
transmission 5-Speed Manual
gear ratios 3.59:1, 2.35:1, 1.69:1, 1.24:1, 0.95:1
final drive 3.71:1
top speed ~255 kph / 158.4 mph
0 – 60 mph ~7.3 seconds
0 – 100 mph ~19.8 seconds
0 – 1/4 mile ~15.8 seconds

Auction & Sales History

1977→1980 Ferrari 308 GTS

1983 Ferrari 308 GTS Quattrovalvole ZFFMA13A9D0046541 – sold for $71,500. The 308 GTS Quattrovalvole offered here is finished in its original and desirable color combination of Nero over Rosso. Following long-term ownership in Southern California, it was acquired by a marque specialist, for whom it was restored by the craftsmen of Blackhorse Motorsports in Los Angeles. It was the recipient of a thorough restoration, returning it back to like-new condition, which included fully rebuilding the engine, suspension, and transmission. It is reportedly in show-quality condition, showing only 36,499 miles, and is offered from the collection of a devout marque enthusiast. Auction Source: RM Sotheby’s Monterey 2015

1977→1980 Ferrari 308 GTS

1982 Ferrari 308 GTSi ZFFHA02B000042679 – sold for €33,376. Purchased in 1989 from an enthusiast from the Oise department, who had acquired it the same year in Monaco, this Ferrari 308 was being repaired by Mr Baillon following a fire. The car is incomplete: the windows are missing and much of the interior is missing. The trunk contains some parts, such as the coils or the tachometer. The mechanicals seem complete. The car seems to be sound and can be either a car for spare parts, or the start point of an interesting restoration project. Auction Source: The Baillon Collection at Rétromobile

1977→1980 Ferrari 308 GTS

1979 Ferrari 308 GTS 26891 – sold for $63,250 Offered from the Estate of William H. Tilley. Matching-numbers example. Successor to the 246 GTS. Auction Source: 2013 Monterey Auction by RM Auctions

1977→1980 Ferrari 308 GTS

1983 Ferrari 308GTS Qv Targa Coupé – sold for €46,000 Representing the 308 in its ultimate, Quattrovalvole form, this left-hand drive 308GTS was purchased in 1983 by a private collector. The car has been kept in long-term storage and maintained in good condition, and currently displays a total of only 29,049 kilometres (approximately 18,000 miles) on the odometer. Offered with Monaco registration papers and roadworthiness certificate. Auction Source: The Paris Sale 2012 by Bonham