Vintage R&T Road Test: 1968 Ferrari 330 GTS – “Go Ahead, Give Yourself A Treat, Buy One”

Road and Track diligently reviewed every permutation of Ferrari, and there were quite a lot of them in this era. The 330 GTS was essentially a 275 GTS with the larger 4-liter V12, but with slightly different front end. And there was also a GTS/4, which had a higher-output 4-cam version of the 4-liter V12. So the tested 330 GTS wa somewhere in the middle of this family of traditional front-engine Ferraris, both luxurious (available with a/c) as well as capable, if not exactly ready for the Sebring 24 hours.

R&T described the sound of the V12 coming to life as “sounding like some sort of cross between an electric motor, a turbine and a reciprocating engine”. It was a very tractable engine, happily idling at 700 rpm and revving to 7000. There’s plenty of torque for an easy get-away, and its higher (lower numerical) final gearing makes it more relaxed at speed than the 3.3 liter versions.


The 5-spped transmission was easy to shift, precise and “strongly synchronized”. Out on the road, the driver feels “he could do anything with this car”.  The steering is light, but power assist was to be available shortly, for those more oriented to the parking lots on Rodeo Drive than Mulholland Canyon. There was plenty of torque to “bring the rear end out at any time”. But the brakes did not earn such a good score.

The body built (and styled) by Pininfaria was “superbly rigid”, a critical feature to allow the suspension to do its work effectively.

The interior was handsome, and the leather seats “very comfortable”, but some details of the instrumentation were subject to criticism, mainly the deep plastic rings around the instruments. As was the single-speed heater/defroster blower, on such an expensive car. The optional air conditioning worked adequately, but of course was not a modern integrated unit.

The tested car was not US-compliant, and there was some question as to whether it would be.

As to justifying its $15,000 price tag, R&T points out “that you can’t get anything like it for anything less”.