The 250 GTO model was the pinnacle of development of the 250 GT series in competition form, whilst still remaining a road car. It made its public debut at the annual pre-season Ferrari press conference in January 1962, and was the only front engine model on display, with its monoposto and sports racing counterparts all having a mid-engine configuration.This model had no tail spoiler, but one was added before its competition debut at the Sebring circuit in America in March 1962. On its maiden outing in the 12 Hour Race, driven by Phil Hill and Olivier Gendebien, the 250 GTO finished second overall to a Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa sports racing car. It also won the GT category comfortably, an impressive debut performance upon which it would build during the next three years.The model was built on a 2400 mm wheel base, as had been the 250 GT ‘SWB’ from which it was derived. Although the chassis was built along the same lines, it used smaller section tubing, with additional bracing for increased torsional rigidity, and was given factory type reference 539/62 Comp., and then 539/64 Comp. Like the earlier 250 GT ‘SWB’ Berlinettas, four wheel disc brakes were fitted, with a cable-operated handbrake to the rear wheels, and it was also available as both a left- and right-hand drive.The power unit was essentially a 250 Testa Rossa specification version of the Colombo single overhead camshaft per bank 3-litre V12 engine, with bore and stroke of 73 x 58.8 mm, but using dry sump lubrication, with factory type reference 168 Comp/62. The spark plugs were outside the vee of the block, and there was a bank of six twin choke Weber 38 DCN carburettors, with a twin coil and rear of engine mounted distributor ignition system, to produce a claimed 300 bhp.The engine was coupled to a new 5-speed, all synchromesh gearbox, with an open gate gear-change tower in the cockpit, similar to that used on the sports racing models since the mid-fifties, driving through a propeller shaft to the rigid rear axle, fitted with a Watts linkage. As befitted its intended competition use, a wide range of rear axle ratios was available.The overall shape of the aluminium bodies designed and built by Scaglietti changed very little during the production period from 1962 to 1964, apart from a one-off example bodied in the style of the 330 LM Berlinetta. The last three cars in the series received Pininfarina-designed and Scaglietti-built bodies of a style very similar to that used on the mid-engine 250 LM sports racing car. Four earlier cars were also re-bodied in the later style during 1964. Although the overall body shape didn’t alter to any great degree, the detail differences during the production run certainly did.The 250 GTO Berlinettas continued the run of successes of the preceding ‘passo lungo’ and ‘passo corto’ models, and with the manufacturers’ championship being transferred to the GT category from 1962, gave Ferrari a hat trick of victories between 1962 and 1964. They were virtually dominant in their class, and were only being caught by the AC Cobras (with much larger capacity V8 engines) during their last competitive year. Amongst the numerous international successes of the 250 GTO were wins in the Tour de France in 1963 and 1964; GT class wins in the Targa Florio in 1962, 1963 and 1964; victories in the Tourist Trophy at Goodwood in 1962 and 1963; with GT category wins at Le Mans in 1962 and 1963, and in the Nurburgring 1000 km in 1963 and 1964.