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Fried Ferrari Anyone?

1994 Ferrari 348 Spider

The buyer of a well-done Diablo that we featured a while back just contacted us about a Ferrari they are trying to sell. Apparently, they already own four Prancing Ponies and need the garage space for their new acquisition. So, this crispy 348 Spider has gotta go! It too needs a lot of work, but there weren’t many these made so perhaps someone out there will want it? Find it here on eBay where the seller has started the bidding at $5k.

Ferrari V8

When I scrolled through the photos, this shot got me excited because I assumed the engine had been pulled out. Most of the interior is gone because the fire started somewhere under the dash. The doesn’t mean you could just get the engine running and drive it around, but there is still some hope. The engine isn’t seized and the title is supposedly clear. The best scenario here would be to restore the car to as-new condition, but if it were yours what do you think you’d do with it?


  1. Avatar photo fred

    This one is only medium well. Looks like could be salvagable if you can locate the interior parts.

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  2. Avatar photo roger

    I am not a foreign car guy,but hate to see any car destroyed.
    Maybe someone will fix her up.Would be a cool ride too.

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  3. Avatar photo MountainMan

    The way to go would be to find one crunched for sale at insurance auction so you could get the majority of the parts needed at once. I would think that buying the needed parts one by one would get pricey real quick. Given the rarity though you may be waiting for a while till that crashed one pops up

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  4. Avatar photo Dolphin Member

    The SCM Guide has the median price for these at $45K and the highest price paid at auction so far at $53K. I doubt you could get the parts and work done needed to get this into shape for under $45K to make it worth that $45K average value. Anyone who doubts that should look at the other things the seller has for sale—dozens of used Ferrari parts at very handsome prices……which add up fast.

    And then it would always have a real bad story attached to it that would be easy to find out about if you start asking around. And I don’t believe for a second the claim by the seller that this car has a “CLEAN TITLE”. Heck, I don’t even believe that it has a regular clean title, let alone a capital-letter one.

    And with 27K miles this one is very close to its required 30K mile major service. And that’s an engine-out service since you can’t change the serpentine cam belt with the engine in the car. That service tends to cost around $10K at the Ferrari dealer. And you better get it done there if you want to sell it on later because Ferrari buyers tend to be very picky.

    Buy a good one with a genuinely clean title and a good no-story history. They aren’t hard to find.

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  5. Avatar photo Brian

    Hi, I’m the owner of this car and I am happy to answer any questions what so ever.
    I’m not here to argue Dolphin but some conter points to what you have said.
    First the title to this car has never been branded by any state ever, so I’m not sure where your coming from saying you wouldn’t believe me ?? There are millions of cars on the road that have been damaged worse then this car with no record of it. Carfax shows a “minor issue” related to the fire. You can think what you want but don’t question someone’s character when you know nothing about them. You can’t chance the fact that this title is clear and has never been branded.

    As for the values, thy are pretty subjective, I think your source may be a bit behind. 348 and 355 prices have been on a sharp rise. Every 348 listed on eBay is between $65 and $70k. A twin to this car is listed at $80,500.

    Ferrari parts do cost a bit more then regular cars. I just dismantled a 360 and some of he items are on eBay. My prices are actually some of he lowest around so I actually sell them instead of hold them for years. Yes the best wy to finish this car would be to buy a wrecked donor and sell what you don’t need. If you did it right you could buy this car at my reserve and finish it having about $30k into it total.

    As for the major service no one going by the mileage because Ferrari also stipulates a time frame for belt changes. Every 3 years (which is crazy overkill) so not many meet the mileage limit before the time. I would 100% do a major service on the engine before running it. Anyone who would take on this build has all the skills needed to do the major themselves and to restore this right the drive train cradle should come out anyway. A major service kit with all belts, bearings, and filters etc is under $1000. Many many people do their own services on these cars. Go check out ferrari chat.

    For those interested even though the spider is rare 95% of the parts from any other 348 are the same and a large majority of the parts that are spider specific are the same as the 355 spider parts so hey are readily availible.

    Please anyone ask any questions you like and I will give you the best information I have. Thanks and happy bidding.

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    • Avatar photo Dolphin Member

      Thanks for your response. First I want to point out that I was not commenting on your character. I was commenting on your car and the ad it appears in. I do not mean to be offensive here, but just because something is said or written down doesn’t automatically lead me to believe it. And if you read many CL or Ebay car ads, the way people do who frequent the Barn Finds site, you might begin to get doubts about some of the things that are claimed about some of the cars people are selling.

      The Ferrari you are selling had an interior fire, and as you said in your ad has no interior or electrical system, plus damage from the firefighters prying on panels trying to deal with the fire, plus some other damage. Yet you say the Carfax report on the car is clean and only shows a “minor issue”.

      If I were considering this car I would have many questions like:
      – Why would such extensive damage and missing parts be described as a minor issue?
      – With such extensive damage, why doesn’t the car have a branded title?
      – Did the owner fail to make an insurance claim on his total loss?
      – Why isn’t the car’s title as it is currently indicated on the car’s title document recorded in the “Item Specifics” section of the Ebay description?
      Many sellers will include a photo or scan of the current title of a special car they have for sale. Perhaps a photo showing the details of the car’s current title plus an explanation of why it is the way it is would help.

      You say that you would 100% do a major service on the engine before running it, so you are actually ahead of me on that point, which is good. I did check out a Ferrari chat site (before making my initial comment), and the source that I consulted there said that a major service on these is $10K at a Ferrari dealer. Of course anyone can attempt and perhaps successfully complete a major service on one of these cars at home, but I stand by my view that Ferrari buyers tend to be very picky, and a $1000 home-done major service would not usually satisfy them the way a service at a Ferrari dealer would.

      BTW, having owned a 330 GTC, been a FCA member for many years, attended FCA meets at Road America, Road Atlanta, and elsewhere, driven and ridden in various Ferraris that now have become $2 to $35 million dollar cars, and spoken to the owners, so I think I have some familiarity with the Ferrari world, and my comments come partly from that familiarity. Having said that, I admit that I cannot afford to buy my old car back because the Ferrari world has left me behind. But I am familiar with it.

      As for values, the median price of $45K and the high price paid at auction of $53K came directly from the latest SCM Guide (received about 3 weeks ago), and are not my prices. If the median selling price is a certain number, that means that some selling prices will be lower and some will be higher. And keep in mind that those are actual selling prices and that SCM keeps records of all of the sales that they can get information on, so are generally very reliable. The prices you mentioned are asking prices from Ebay listings, and I think anyone who reads Ebay and Barn Finds much will be familiar with the idea that asking prices can often be higher than actual selling prices.

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  6. Avatar photo Eric

    Is anyone else thinking of a rear wheel drive conversion on a Honda CRX?, or an engine transplant in a VW van, bug, or Chevy corvair?

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  7. Avatar photo XYZOL

    I would buy it for the engine and put it in a Fiat Uno where the back seats used to be ;). A stock car weighs 1500 pounds, with 380 hp it would be as exciting to drive as it is scary to handle ;).

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  8. Avatar photo The Chucker

    Medium well Maranello

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  9. Avatar photo Casey

    Your best hope to restore this would be to find another one with a cooked engine and decent interior and front body panels. They are out there, unfortunately several have succumbed to engine fires. And the engine and rear subframe are designed to be removed on these as a unit so that helps.

    There are some good parts here. The 360 starfish wheels alone if in good shape are worth a couple grand. They are popular swaps on these and other pre-360 ferraris. I think the even fit on volvos ;)

    Many parts on these are becoming NLA and hard to find. Although parting a car like this takes a lot of work and storage space, it could be worthwhile.

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    • Avatar photo Dolphin Member

      Agreed about finding a good car with a cooked engine, but as Brian (the seller) said above, he would want to do a major service before starting it, which would be good because it’s possible that the timing belt on the engine right now might be weak and break, which would trash the interference engine.

      That means that you would need to buy this Ferrari and do the service before you would start the engine to confirm whether it was in good condition and could be used in an other car. For me that would make this purchase risky, since if the burned car’s engine is bad you would end up owning a car without much value except for some bits and pieces.

      If I were the seller I would change the timing belt before selling it, then make sure all the systems were in good shape, and start the engine. Then you would be in a position to say that the car had good value. To me, as it is now, the car’s value is unknown.

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  10. Avatar photo Wayne S.K.

    “MAGNUM! Wot is the meaning of this? I de-mond an onswer!” Yeah, yeah, I know, a completely different year/style/color etc. but every time I see one of these I just can’t help myself! (I have a condition…)

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  11. Avatar photo Jeric

    Racecar then no need for carpet door panels etc, just one or two race seats

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  12. Avatar photo Dolphin Member

    One more thing about the engine and whether a major service with a timing belt change are all that’s needed….

    This is a mid-engine car, and looking at the photos, the fire reached beyond the front of the engine, up to or close to the rear of the engine. The fire was intense enough to melt the engine cover all over the engine (as the Ebay listing says) and require a replacement engine cover (red in the photos). The drive pulleys, timing belt, water pump are all at the front of the engine. That tells me that most of the components at the front of the engine and maybe the front of the aluminium engine itself were probably damaged or at least compromised by the fire. That’s why you would want to do the major service to check and service those components before starting the engine up.

    I think the high risk of damage to the front of the engine makes the value of the engine a big question mark.

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  13. Avatar photo Brian

    I absolutely want to be completely open and honest about this car, I wouldn’t try to hide a thing. Bad of me to assume but I thought in would be a given to anyone wanting to rebuild the car that they would want to drop the cradle and do a major when doing the restoration. I myself had it 3/4 of the way pulled out when the new project came along and I decided I my pass this one along. There are many step by step how to guide threads over on f chat and I would venture to say hundreds have done this at home. It’s not rocket science and any good wrench can do it. If well documented with receipts and pictures of what you did most agree it is not negative on the value and even if it is you saved $9000 doing it yourself over taking it to the stealership so if you sell it for $9000 less you’re still even. Anyway I would suggest doing yourself and keeping the car to enjoy and not sell it. Life is too short to not blast around in a convertible ferrari.

    The engine has rubber hoses and electrical connectors and such at the front of the engine that are not melted to I dought there would be any issues with the aluminum of he engine. It barely got warm enough to melt/ disfigure some of he upper rubber etc. I can take close pictures of any area and add them to the listing.

    I’ve dismantled many Ferraris that were not rebuildable and rebuilt some that were. I think this one would be relatively easy considering there will be no frame straightening or grafting etc. just source the parts and put it together. Having dismantled several of these I believe there is easily $20k in parts here. Even if you dismantled the engine and sold it in parts. The reserve is at about what I could sell the drivetrain for including he radiators and axels etc. but I don’t want to see this car destroyed or at least I’m not going to be the one to do it. If you look at my other auctions you will see what is left of a 360 I just dismantled, I could easly part this out but I think it deservese better.

    As for the title I don’t know what the ownerat the time of the fire’s insurance situation was. The auto check is on eBay and you can see the “minor issue” of the fire reported. No title was ever branded so assume no insurance eve paid out. It went through a couple guys before I got a hold of it. The last guy took the door and headlights for his own project and I took it off his hands before he parted it out with intentions of saving it.

    Again anyone please ask anything you want to know and I will answer as best I can. thanks.

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  14. Avatar photo Dolphin Member

    It’s very hard for me to believe that someone in the car business would buy a badly damaged late model Ferrari that they intended to either fix or resell, without getting the title for the car. Especially if they thought they might end up selling it as a car to be reconditioned, on the largest and most visible market for cars in the country.

    With all due respect to Ebay’s title checking service, I would not buy a car like this based on what some internet based title service says. The only thing that counts is the actual valid document, because that’s what you need to hand over if you want to register the car for the road.

    Many Ebay car sellers state up front that they have the title in hand. You have not done that, even after a couple of back-and-forths about the car’s title.

    If you have the title for this car you should tell bidders what it says. Better still, you could post a photo of it in the Ebay listing so that bidders would know the exact state of the car’s title.

    There’s no easy way to say this, but what I read here about this car are stories. And one of the surest ways to raise questions about a car, especially a seriously damaged high end car like this, is to try to sell it based on stories.

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    • Avatar photo Kenneth Atkinson

      You said that you can’t believe that a car dealer wouldn’t do what you described above.
      I am a Licensed Texas Car Dealer and I’m not going to chance loosing my Bond, my license or anything else for a questionable ownership vehicle. There’s always another one down the street.

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  15. Avatar photo Brian

    Ok. I don’t understand where all the hate comes from. I said anything you ask I will do. There will be a picture of the title put on eBay in a few minutes. I don’t have any idea what you are saying in the first paragraph about someone not getting a title for the car. Where are you even coming from? Very odd.

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  16. Avatar photo Brian

    There you go my friend. Title pictures have been added. Please note no brand or liens. I also left it so you can see my full name and address so if you want you can stop by and visit anytime. Just come to the front door first because this is Montana and we shoot trespassers. :)

    Again anything about the title aside, there is much more value in parts here then the reserve. Happy bidding Dolphin.

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  17. Avatar photo Tom2

    Brian wins.

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  18. Avatar photo Dolphin Member

    For anyone still reading this there is information about this Ferrari that was discussed by the seller on a site for Ferrari fans, but for some reason wasn’t mentioned here. If it had been mentioned here it would probably have cleared everything up, so here it is….

    It turns out that Brian, the seller, had applied for a salvage title for another high end project car (a 1991 Lamborghini) in his home state of Montana, but was refused a salvage title for the car. He was told by the authorities that Montana does not grant salvage titles for any car over 15 years old. He was also told by authorities that he should get a regular (clean) Montana title for the project Lamborghini. That discussion is here:

    So it looks like the same thing happened with this burned Ferrari 348 Spider, and that the seller got a clean Montana title for this car because that’s the only title that Montana would give him. Photos of the title have been added to the Ebay listing for the car.

    It’s not clear to me why the discussion about this Ferrari’s title got personal when the issue, for me at least, was how a burned car with so much damage and missing so many parts could have a clean title instead of a salvage title. I imagine that would probably be an issue for any potential buyer. If the information about Montana’s 15-year-old policy about salvage titles had been mentioned in the Ebay listing and also here I think that would have cleared everything up.

    Anyway, that’s why I wanted to add the information here. I guess the bottom line is, different states can have very different laws and policies, and if a car has a clean title now it doesn’t necessarily mean that it was never crashed/burned/seriously damaged and totaled by an insurance company in the past.

    I think we all win when we have full information about something that’s puzzling because it just doesn’t seem right, and that might create a problem for someone who doesn’t know the full story.

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  19. Avatar photo Brian

    I can’t believe you can’t let this go. You are the one that made assumptions and started making all types of comments that seemed to question character. When in your first post you say you don’t believe it for a second you are insinuating I’m lying. I have been completely open. The very fact that I was talking about it on the Lamborghini should show that I don’t try to hide anything. Plus it shows that with the Lamborghini it was the first time I had learned about that with Montana. I was an honest guy trying to apply for a salvage certificate on it.
    For the last time this title has never been branded by ANY state EVER. Not that it freakin matters. I received the signed over CT title that was issued to the owner before the fire and was transferred to me by the state of MT. Period. If it was any other way I would say so. The fire is documented by carfax, auto check etc as a minor accident. I don’t know why, none of that is my doing, I didn’t own the car then. It did have more parts on it as the guy who had it before me took the door and headlights and some other stuff for his project before I was able to get the car from him to save it.
    This will be my last response so go ahead and write whatever you want and I won’t refute it. This is such a waist of my life trying to defend my character and a completely transperatent project car deal with some Internet troll, key board warrior who hides behind a screen name and throws ranting tantrums like a child. Come to think of it, with you hiding behind a screen name, we don’t really know if you are not just a 14 year old boy trying to sort his way through strange hormone changes in his body…. I’m so straight forward I posted my full name and address in the car add for the world to see. I’m not hiding anything.
    I get you can’t trust anyone, good for you, but it’s usually a fact that those who can’t trust others it is because they are the dishonest ones and they can’t believe everyone else isn’t like them and they are always looking for the angle from the perspective of what shady things they would have done.
    Anyway, have at it. I’m so done with you little kid…

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  20. Avatar photo Dolphin Member

    Brian, I have no axe to grind or any grudge at all against you personally. I am not 14 years old and you do not need to insult me. I can see that you are very upset, but I think you have misunderstood what I wrote just above earlier today.

    If you read it again and not take it as a personal thing you will see that what I said was that the Montana title question is cleared up. It is definitely not in doubt for me at all, and I did not question it in any way earlier today.

    Once again I have to wonder what is making you take this all so personally. To clear up the title issue all you had to do was to explain about Montana’s policy of not giving cars 15+ years old a salvage title even when they are burned out project cars—end of story.

    I wonder why you didn’t give the same information here that you had already put on the Ferrari chat website. I had to find it there myself to understand how Montana does things, which I had never heard of before. I looked for it to try to understand your view of things and for more about the car, and as soon as I found out about Montana not giving salvage titles to 15+ year old cars I wrote about it earlier today above on Barn Finds to clear things up.

    I think it’s just a fact that some of us who read Barn Finds and go onto Ebay have ended up being sceptical about a lot of claims that sellers give about old cars they are selling. Some of us have been burned on cars before, and when there is a problem with a title it can be serious. An example is one jurisdiction that I know of where a car branded because of flooding cannot ever be registered for the road no matter how much or how little flooding there was or how thoroughly any damage was fixed. That’s extreme but I know from personal experience that it’s important to be as clear as you can about car titles.

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  21. Avatar photo Brian

    I honestly wasnt going to reply but you didn’t read or can’t comprehend what I wrote. I did not mention the 15 year Montana thing ( which I’m sure many other states have) when talking about this car or it’s title simply because it does not apply to this car. I had this car titled and registered long before I even found that one. This car was titled in the classic way, the old title was signed over and the new title was issued. Any Montana rules never came into play it was a simple title transfer.

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  22. Avatar photo Metalted

    Dolphin , please stop.
    You sir are the one that is being insulting. It’s clear you don’t want this car. So please move on and let others post that like the seller and his car.👍

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  23. Avatar photo ironhead75

    I like Dolphins approach, it may seem harsh to others but the reality is when you put up a vehicle like this you should be prepared to handle tough questions regarding provenance…

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  24. Avatar photo Brian

    Dolphins approach was not to ask a question but to imeadeatly insinuate that I am being dishonest. “I don’t believe for a second the claim by the seller.”
    I imeadiatly explained over and over the simple fact that the title was never branded be any state ever. ( how many times can i repeat that and not have some people comprehend?) and my complete offer of honesty and transparentcy on any question.
    It is blatantly obvious I am selling a car in need of repair, I mean come on. I also have a reserve that is less then the parts value of the car so you won’t go wrong.
    Here are the simple facts about the title of this car wether anyone chooses to believe them. I did miss write earlier that is was a CT title, but that is where I picked the car up at. The title was from Massachusetts.
    1. A MA title was issued for the car back before it was damaged and it was someone’s fun toy.
    2. Unfortunately there was a fire.
    3. We can speculate all we want as to WHY, but there was no total loss insurance payout for the car, maybe the rich owner only had liability on it. Who knows? This fire damage is reported by many of the vin check services as a minor accident. Again don’t ask me why.
    4. I think a dismantler bought it, then the guy I bought it from, Im not sure, I wasn’t there. The last owner took some parts for his project, headlights, door and door parts, etc. and was going to art the rest out.
    5. I come into the picture. I buy the car to save, I receive the ORIGINAL MA title from before the fire. It has been signed over by the original owner to a buyer and then reassigned though a couple people and finally to me. I send in this signed title and receive my MT title. No brands or complications EVER, EVER.
    No 15 years BS Dolphin tried to bring in and confuse the whole thing… Nothing.
    6. I will sign that MT title over to the buyer and they can build themselves a great ride, I can only assume it would be dolphin. Who hasn’t revieled anything about himself so we really don’t even know if he’s old enough to own a car.

    I don’t know I can explain it in more detail. I’m sure as hell not trying to hide anything. Never have. Dolphin just got insanely fixated, wouldn’t read what I was saying, and convoluted it with conspiracy theories in his mind.

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  25. Avatar photo Mark-A

    After all the negativity towards the seller, can I defend him by adding that he’s trying to be as helpful as possible by answering ANY questions posed! Also my Mum told me this years AGO is “TO NEVER ASSUME ANYTHING AS IT MAKES AN ‘ASS’ OUT OF ‘U’ & ‘ME’ which uses every letter from ASSUME! Please try to remember this before making an assumption about anything. Thanx

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