Fiat Dino Coupe
Yes, this is Fiat but back in 1967, Fiat introduced the Dino, a coupe and a convertible sports car which featured a Ferrari V6 engine straight from the 246 GT Dino. Bertone designed the coupe, while Pininfarina styled the convertible. The two cars shared the mechanics, engine and performance, but the design was totally different.
They officially sold the Fiat Dino Coupe in America. In some classified ads, they go for as little as $15,000, which is the most affordable way to own a piece of Ferrari magic for Ford Fiesta prices. If you are a budget-minded car enthusiast, look for the Dino Coupe since it is more common and affordable than the convertible. Also, go for the later 2.4-liter V6 version since it is better and faster than the early 2.0-liter model.
Lancia Thema 8.32
Ferrari never officially built a four-door sedan, but Lancia did. In 1986, they introduced the Thema 8.32. This was a top of the range Lancia model at the time. It featured Ferrari’s transversally mounted 3.0-liter V8 engine from the 308 GTB Quattrovalvole; hence the name. It had eight cylinders with 32 valves.
This wasn’t the first time Ferrari borrowed an engine from Lancia. Some 10 years before the Thema 8.32, the Lancia Stratos received a 2.4-liter V6 from a Ferrari Dino. However, it was the first time a Ferrari engine powered a luxury sedan. The Thema 8.32 produced 212 HP and had a seven-second 0 to 60 mph time. This was fast for the day and for a front-wheel drive sedan.
To call the 8.32 a BMW M5 competitor would be a stretch, but the Thema Ferrari was a comfortable cruiser with lots of style. Of course, Lancia offered a high level of standard equipment and a long list of luxury options, too. Lancia discontinued it in 1992, selling just 3,000 Thema 8.32s. This model is unknown to American enthusiasts since Lancia never imported cars officially to the U.S. in the late 80’s.
The Thema as a model is mechanically similar to the Alfa Romeo 164 or SAAB 9000 that they sold in America. Fortunately, the Thema 8.32 is now over 25 years old, which means they can legally import it to the U.S. The prices of the Thema in Europe are below $20,000, which is affordable considering the rarity and provenance of this extraordinary Italian sedan.
These affordable Ferraris cost less than a full-size SUV, so if you have always dreamt of driving one, now is the time to make your move. You could be the proud owner of a cool Ferrari.