2006 Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano 'Panamerican 20,000'
Lot 821 | Passion for the Drive: The Cars of Jim Taylor | Estimate: $450,000 - $550,000
Chassis No. ZFFFD60B000146728
Borrowing its name from the famed racing circuit used to develop the performance of modern Ferraris, the 599 GTB Fiorano was intended to offer a world-beating combination of not only high speed – as the company's most powerful car ever – but also comfort and safety. “A Ferrari you can use every day” has become almost a cliche, but this was genuinely a 205-mph automobile that could rocket around the track or be driven to lunch at the House of Pizza in Gloversville with equal skill and pleasure. Its manufacturer was justifiably proud of that fact and decided to prove it in grand fashion, with an event that was not merely a publicity stunt but a true test of the model's mettle.
To celebrate its latest and greatest grand touring model, in 2006 Ferrari launched a grand tour indeed, the Ferrari Panamerican 20,000, a three-month road trip from Brazil to New York City completed over fifteen stages by journalists from around the world. Two new 599 GTB Fioranos, one in Blu Tour de France and the other in Rosso Corsa, were fitted with only slight modifications to cope with the more rugged terrain in certain areas, including a special upgraded 4mm-thick duralumin underbody shield and a slightly higher suspension set-up. The cars left Brazil on August 24, 2006, journeying south through Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Los Angeles, then to Las Vegas, Houston, Miami, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Toronto, and ending in New York City on November 17th.
Both cars completed the 20,000-mile junket successfully. Ecstatically reported on by the adoring press, the Panamerican 20,000 successfully proved the 599's credentials as an exceptional high-performance machine, that, rather than a flimsy plaything, could actually be genuinely used every day, for long distances, and in literally all driving situations.
Afterward Ferrari fully serviced both cars, putting the Rosso Corsa example on display in Galleria Ferrari and then installing it in the factory collection – where it remains today – and offering the other Blu Tour de France model to the public. During a visit to Maranello later in 2007, Jim Taylor acquired this very special automobile, the only Ferrari Panamerican 20,000 car to be released to the public. Shortly before it had been driven by the greatest Formula 1 driver of all time, Michael Schumacher, at speed at Fiorano with his son and successor, Mick, then 8 years old, in the passenger seat; one of Mr. Taylor's friends, onlooking, commented that Schumacher, in typical fashion, 'drove it like he stole it.'
Subsequently properly imported to the States and Federalized, at no small effort, the car has remained much-enjoyed in Mr. Taylor's ownership ever since. Mr. Taylor is, of course, a strong believer in using and enjoying his automobiles as their builders intended, and historically important modern ex-factory Ferraris are not exempt from that belief. In the last sixteen years he has used this car extensively as an everyday automobile, accumulating more than 40,000 miles, with the odometer reading 67,071 miles at the time of cataloguing. Supporting such use, it has been continuously well-serviced in his ownership by the well-respected official Ferrari dealer Miller Motorcars of Greenwich, Connecticut, as well as by his in-house team in Gloversville, with many service records on file. It has been freshly cosmetically detailed in preparation for sale and remains in good overall condition for a 599 of its mileage – and, most importantly, runs and drives very strongly, just as its owner would expect it to.
This is almost certainly one of the most historically significant, ex-factory modern Ferraris – one driven with brio by men who loved it, and soon to pass into another of their ilk.