Customs & Classics
John Lennon wasn't your average, run-of-the-mill musician. So it makes sense that his first car wasn't your average, run-of-the-mill car.
It was, in fact, a 1965 Ferrari 330GT 2+2 Coupe, which will go under the hammer at the Bonhams auction at the Goodwood Festival of Speed on July 12.
Or at least that's the plan. The car has had only one owner since Lennon sold it in 1967 and was put up for auction in 2011. But the owner had second thoughts and withdrew it, unable to part with his historic machine.
After originally painting it trademark Ferrari red, the owner has restored it to its original condition - including Lennon's actual numberplate. The Italian machine is finished in Azzuro blue paint complete with blue interior, as the Beatle singer requested.
The story goes that Lennon only passed his driving test after Ticket to Ride had become a massive hit. So with one of England's wealthiest pop stars in need of a car, dealers from around London flocked to his house to try to sell him one.
Lennon reportedly chose the Ferrari over a selection of cars including a Jaguar E-Type, Maserati and Aston Martin.
''It is a wonderful commentary on the early excitement generated by 'Beatlemania' that John Lennon didn't even have to leave his house to buy his first car,'' says Sholto Gilbertson, senior specialist in the Bonhams Motor Car Department.
The 330GT is expected to fetch around NZ$340,000 at the auction.
It won't be the only star attraction at the Goodwood sale with the Mercedes-Benz Formula One car Juan Manual Fangio raced in 1954 also on offer. It has been tipped to fetch up to NZ$7.5 million as it is still in original ''barn find'' condition.