Driven by the Greats

Campaigned by Scuderia Ferrari for the 1956 and 1957 seasons, this Ferrari 290 MM racer was piloted by an amazing assortment of factory team drivers including Juan Manuel Fangio, Phil Hill, Peter Collins, Wolfgang von Trips, Olivier Gendebien, Eugenio Castellotti and later, Stirling Moss, in some of the most prestigious race events in the world.

The 290 MM was developed by Ferrari to contest the 1956 World Sports Car Championship and the Mille Miglia, hence the MM initials, and to reclaim dominance over past and present competitor, Mercedes-Benz, and its great domestic rival, Maserati. For Enzo Ferrari, this was just as important as his efforts to win the Formula One World Championship. This was the fourth and final example ever built. Equipped with an all-new powertrain, composed of the Tipo 130 V12, 3,490 cc engine, coupled with the Tipo 520 transaxle, the 290 MM was the car to bring the manufacturer title back to Maranello for the third time.

In serving for the Scuderia Ferrari team, the racing history of this 290 MM speaks for itself. At its debut in the 1956 Mille Miglia in 860 Monza specifications, it finished 2nd overall while wearing number #551, piloted by Peter Collins and Louis Klemantaski. In the same year, Olivier Gendebien and Hans Hermann took the car to 4th at the Targa Florio in Sicily, while Umberto Maglioli finished in 2nd place with the car in the XVIII Aosta-Gran San Bernardo Hillclimb, also in Italy. The legendary Fangio raced the car in the Swedish Grand Prix just months later. Upgraded to 290 MM specifications by the factory in 1957, its remit outside Italy extended as Alfonso de Portago, Wolfgang von Trips and Eugenio Castellotti finished 3rdin the 1000km Buenos Aires, and two months later the car entered the 12 Hours of Sebring with Phil Hill and von Trips at the wheel. Stirling Moss slid behind the wheel at the 1957 Bahamas Speed Weeks and drove the car to victory in both the Memorial Race and the Nassau Trophy Race.

RM Sotheby's will be offering this beautiful 1956 Ferrari 290 MM by Scaglietti at their upcoming Petersen Automotive Museum Auction on the 8th December. For more information on this and other vehicles at the sale, click on the link below. Photos: Remi Dargegen ©2018 Courtesy of RM Sotheby's.