Does it look low to you? That’s because it sits on lowering springs. The weight of the strengthening beams forced the car down at the back. Scott says he ripped out the old suspension and ordered three sets of front springs of different specs so he could play around with the ride height to equalise front and rear. Next thing, he’ll be saying there’s an old Vauxhall four-pot under that rear cover. Not a chance: Scott props it open with a piece of 4x2 to reveal the car’s original, and suitably grimy, flat-12 engine. Somewhere in there is the original five-speed manual transmission, too, as evidenced by the dull alloy transmission gate downstream in the cabin.
Scott bought the car from a bloke in California. At the time, he was looking for an engine cover for his 1990 Testarossa coupé, a left-hand-drive car he’d bought from the Netherlands. (Seven of his Ferraris are left-hookers.) There he was, surfing the web, when up pops this four-year-old ad for an unfinished Testarossa spider project car.
“I was intrigued and called the seller on the off-chance it was still available,” says Scott. “Incredibly, it was. He’d bought it intending to restore it but it just sat in his garage gathering dust. The owner said he wasn’t interested in selling it to anyone who would just break it for spares. I told him I would take on the project and get the car roadworthy. We agreed a deal and I shipped the car here to the UK. All in – the car, shipping, taxes – it cost me £16,000.”
Ferrari made only one Testarossa Spider, commissioned by company boss Gianni Agnelli in 1986. It was sold by his children in 2016 for £1.2 million. Naturally, it was a proper job, unlike the dozen or so copycats, including Scott’s, that followed from body shops. At some point, Scott’s car was owned by a US kit car company that used it as the basis for its replica Testarossas. Then one day, perhaps following a crash, they cut the roof off, at which point, says Scott, Ferrari stepped in to protect its copyright...
“When I received the car and the two crates of bits that came with it, my intention was to rebuild it,” says Scott. “I had my other Testarossa coupé that had also just arrived so I used that as a blueprint to work outwhere the bits from the crates should go and as a wiring guide. I was able to swap parts between the two cars so I was able to cheaply and quickly verify if things worked or not.”
But as Scott’s giant Ferrari puzzle came together, the more he loved its raw and unfinished appearance. No bad thing, either, since to bring it to factory standard would have cost a bomb and, in any case, without a roof, it could never be a purist’s Ferrari and his investment would never be recouped. He decided just to enjoy the build, make the car mechanically perfect – and stick with the rat look.