After the 330 GTC Coupé was unveiled at the 1966 Geneva Salon, the 330 GTS “spider” version became available later in the year, prior to being shown at the 1966 Paris Salon, and replaced the 275 GTS in the Ferrari model range.
It was a Pininfarina design, and was assembled at their works in Turin, and then delivered fully trimmed to Ferrari for fitment of the mechanical components. Apart from its folding roof, the 330 GTS was identical to the 330 GTC, and as with that model, were unusual for Ferrari in that they had a model badge on the boot lid, proclaiming ’330′.
Prior to this only a very few cars had any model identity on them, and those that did were normally ‘Speciales’. The nose featured a slim, projecting ovoid radiator grille, headlights in shallow recesses in the forward face of the wings, which had triple louvre engine bay exhaust outlets in their sides, bounded by a slim bright trim strip on three sides. This was married to a tail section that was first used on the earlier 275 GTS, to produce a harmonious, light and elegant design that featured slim quarter bumpers at each corner. The folding roof of the 330 GTS was retained by a pair of over-centre clips on the top screen rail when in the erected position, whilst a clip-on protective vinyl cover fitted over it when stowed in a recess behind the seats.
Production of the 330 GTS model continued into late 1968, when it was upgraded with a 4.4-litre engine and minor cosmetic changes, to become the 365 GTS model. It was produced in both right and left hand drive form, in the odd number chassis sequence used at that time, and 100 examples were produced in the chassis number range 08899 to 11713.
The bodies were mounted on a 2,400 mm wheelbase tubular steel chassis with factory reference number 592, and the principal layout was very similar to that of the concurrently produced 275 GTB models, as the mechanical layout was virtually identical. The standard road wheels were 7L x 14 in, fitted with 205 x 14 in tyres, of an elegant and smooth 10-hole alloy design, similar to those used on the sports racing competition Ferrari models of the period, with a knock-off spinner to the Rudge hub, with Borrani wire wheels available as an option.
All models in the series were fitted with four wheel Girling disc brakes, with a cable-operated handbrake actuating separate callipers on the rear discs. As with the 275 GTS, a hard top was available as an option on the 330 GTS during the production run, but was rarely specified.
The engine was an enlarged version of that fitted to the 275 GTB, and virtually identical in specification to that used in the late series 330 GT 2+2 models: a single overhead camshaft per bank V12 wet sump unit, with factory type reference 209/66, of 3,967 cc capacity, with a bore and stroke of 77 x 71 mm. It was fitted with a bank of either three twin choke Weber 40 DCZ/6 or 40 DFI/2 carburettors, with a twin coil and rear of engine-mounted distributor ignition system, to produce a claimed 300 bhp. The only significant changes to the mechanical specification during production were: substitution of twin oil cooler radiators for the original single unit from chassis 09839, plus a modified fuel delivery system and molybdenum-sprayed gearbox with synchromesh rings from chassis 09939.
The 330 GTS shared the same transmission and rear suspension layout as the post-April 1966 275 GTB model: two engine mounting points and two transaxle support points, with a rigid torque tube connecting the two to form a solid unit. The transaxle was a type 592/1369 5-speed unit, with independent coil spring and wishbone rear suspension and Koni shock absorbers. The independent front suspension was by unequal length wishbones with coil springs and Koni hydraulic shock absorbers, whilst the steering was worm and roller without power assistance. A noteworthy ‘Speciale’ (although not by Ferrari) was the “Harrah Targa”, a conversion carried out in the USA on a 330 GTS (chassis 10913). William Harrah in Reno, Nevada, was the Western Region Ferrari dealer at the time of purchasing chassis 10913, and was famous for his enormous car collection. The conversion work to a Targa roof configuration (the first on a Ferrari model) was carried out in his workshops.
It features a stainless steel-covered roll hoop, with a black vinyl-covered removable roof panel and a long, sloping tinted Perspex rear screen and a boot lid shorter than standard. Unusually for him, he did not keep the car for very long. This may have been due to its unhappy reminders of his short-lived marriage to country singer Bobbie Gentry, who apparently enjoyed driving the car.