Ferrari tends to base their roadsters on smaller V8 models, making an open-top front-engined V12 convertible from Maranello, Italy, something of a rarity. Fortunately this is a brand that specializes in rarities. The Ferrari factory has been limiting vehicle production numbers for years, releasing 559 examples of the 575 Superamerica in 2005 and just 448 of the 550 Barchetta Pininfarina in 2000; only 122 open-top examples of the 365 Daytona hit the streets, and for the 599 SA Aperta, a mere 80 were built. But rarest of them all has to be the 275 NART Spyder.
A more faithful conversion of the iconic 275 GTB/4 than the more common 275 GTS (which had entirely different bodywork), the NART Spyder owes its existence to Ferrari importer and three-time Le Mans winner Luigi Chinetti. Despite 25 orders placed, Ferrari made only 10 of these vehicles at Chinetti's request, naming them after his North American Racing Team (NART), which successfully campaigned the "prancing horse" in races across the U.S. and around the world.
Steve McQueen famously drove one in The Thomas Crown Affair and later bought one for himself. But the car you see here might be the most desirable of the original 10. Chassis number 10709 was ordered by Eddie Smith, Sr. of North Carolina, who traveled to Maranello with Chinetti to pick it up in 1967. It has remained in his family's possession ever since; but now his descendants have consigned it to RM Auctions, which will put it up for sale during Pebble Beach weekend in Monterey, California this year. Given that the car is extremely rare, has low mileage, and the that the proceeds will go to charity, you can bet this NART Spyder will sell for some serious dough.