Ferrari had a problem. It wanted to go Formula 2 racing in the 1960s but it needed to homologate its 2.0-litre engine for competition, and that meant at least 500 had to be built and used in road-going cars. As a maker of low-volume sports cars, that was never going to happen.
Yes, Ferrari tried with the Dino 206GT, powered by its new 2.0-litre V6, but its small production numbers (just 152 were made between 1967-69) were never going to trouble the homologation bean counters.
To solve the homologation problem, Enzo cast his not inconsiderable gaze to Turin and Italy’s mainstream maker of affordable cars, Fiat. An agreement was reached, and Fiat set about designing a new sport car that could accommodate the ‘Dino’ engine. Fiat also agreed to build the Ferrari-designed engine at its Turin plant.
The results were the Fiat Dino Coupe and Fiat Dino Spider. With Bertone responsible for the design of the Coupe, it was left to Pininfarina to pen the altogether more elegant and swoopy Spider. In a race of the drawing boards, it was the Spider which made its debut first, unveiled to the public at the 1966 Turin motor show. The Coupe followed months later, the covers taken off the Giorgetto Giugiaro-designed fastback at Geneva in March, 1967.
Both were powered by the 2.0-litre V6 making a claimed 118kW. Power was sent to the rear wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox and thanks to its svelte 1240kg kerb weight, the sprint from 0-110km/h could be dispatched in around 7.0 seconds, not too shabby for the time.
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