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March 31st, 2017

Ferrari is pure driving emotion, blended in with purebred racing pedigree. They enjoy their very own status quo. But sometimes, even when you have the latest Ferrari, it isn’t enough to differentiate you from the rest. That’s exactly what happened when George Barris, who rewarded himself with a brand new Ferrari 308 GTS back in 1978.

George Barris is a well-known man in Hollywood-land. Starting off with an early infatuation for cars, he moved to Los Angeles to start the Barris Kustoms Shop, a place where he would make his passion for restyling cars his profession. The shop’s location was perfect for Hollywood to take notice of his customised cars and it wasn’t long before Barris started making cars for Hollywood movies.

Barris’ first movie car was a customised 1946 Chevrolet that was used in teen crime drama, High School Confidential. Over the years Barris has created some of the most well-known Hollywood movie cars, such as the Batmobile from the 1966 Batman television series, Jalopy from Beverly Hillbillies, 1971 Lincoln from The Car and K.I.T.T from Knight Rider.

After gaining success with Barris Kustoms Shop, George bought himself a brand new 1978 Ferrari 308 GTS. To share his enthusiasm, he immediately joined the Ferrari club, only to find out that his car looked exactly the same as everyone else’s to an extent that he couldn’t tell which was his. Barris, being a master customizer decided to take matters in his own hands to make Maranello’s offering a bit more bespoke to his own taste.

Barris started off by creating a widebody kit for the Ferrari 308 GTS where the rear fenders were dramatically flared to accommodate the extra-wide BBS wheels and tyres. The 80’s supercar staple pop up headlights were removed in favour of regular ones that would be placed under amber covers. A new bumper with a deep chin spoiler was made while there was a custom fabricated grille at the back. To complete the modifications, Barris finished the body in a unique two-tone colour scheme that included metallic gold upper panels and metallic copper lower panels that were separated by green, white and red stripes at the Ferrari 308 GTS’ beltline.

For the inside, Barris once again went with his signature styling that came with quintessential 80s touch. There was an 80s NEC telephone, a Sony television, Kenwood audio system, and a reverse camera. These period tech bits complemented his re-upholstered seats that continued the Italian flag motif, along with a fully custom digital instrument cluster and center console.

While Barris is well-known for this customized cars in Hollywood, this particular 1978 Ferrari 308 GTS that is currently up for sale at Hyman Ltd. is something really special. Being his own car, the quality of fit and finish is off course top-class, while showcasing a unicorn mix of American hotrod culture and Italian craftsmanship.

Images via Hyman Ltd.

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