Two Owner, Low Mileage 1989 Ferrari Mondial T Convertible

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With the passage of decades, Ferrari’s production models began to hang around for longer, thanks to rising development costs. The 342 Amercia and 250 Europa were single-year rarities during the 1950s. The 250 GTO and the 275 GTS were produced for just three years in the 1960s. But the 308 GTB and its derivatives ran for over ten years with estimated production at 12,000 examples. Ferrari had moved to incremental – rather than wholesale – changes to address its markets. Meanwhile, the popularity of the 2+2 Porsche 911 was rankling Ferrari. It responded with the 308 GT4, designed by Bertone, cradling an eight-cylinder motor mid-ship. No one liked it! Fewer than 3000 were sold over eight years. Clearly, a better effort was necessary. The Mondial 8 was launched in 1980, with a longer wheelbase and a higher roofline – allowing for true 2+2 seating. The press panned it! Slow, overweight, with electrical problems and a balky injection system, it was also expensive. Some call it with worst Ferrari ever. Never quitters, Ferrari improved the Mondial over three more iterations. The last of these, the Mondial T, finally had the power and finesse that the market demanded. Here on craigslist is a 1989 Ferrari Mondial T convertible with an asking price of $55,000. This car has covered only 24,000 miles under two owners. It can be driven away from Fairfield, New Jersey. Thanks to T. J. for this exotic tip!

The Mondial T is powered by the best engine provided to any of the four series – a 3.4 liter V8 with fuel delivery courtesy of a Bosch Motronic injection system. Good for 300 hp and a zero to sixty time in under six seconds, this Mondial is finally feeling like a Ferrari. Of course, there’s a catch. In the earlier cars, the engine was mounted transversely, but in the T, the engine was mounted longitudinally with the five-speed gearbox mounted transversely, making a “t”. While the new layout improved the car’s center of gravity, it nearly guarantees that pulling the engine is the only way to perform the belt service. This owner managed to leave the motor in situ, but the process does not sound easy. Our seller did not provide engine photos, unfortunately, but it’s under that louvered lid. What we do see in this photo is the convertible top, with a yellowed rear window and some discoloring in the fabric. Caveat emptor: these tops don’t always work right.

The interior shows off the creamy leather – slightly buckled in the driver’s seat – and gated shift. I viewed several other low-mileage Mondials, and that leather wrinkling seems to be endemic. The rear seats offer postage-stamp seating for tiny people. The Mondial dash serves up plain gauges set in austere squares – not very swanky, but at least we see the mileage.

The fit of the front hood bothers me, appearing gappy at the windshield edge. Perhaps it was open for a photo that isn’t included in the listing. No underside shots are provided, either. So many questions, so few answers – but one factor we can consider is value. This eBay listing hints at the top end for these cars, presenting a very fine, fully serviced example at an ask of $65,000. Other “T” convertibles cluster in that same region. Add about $10k to this seller’s price for the belt service, and consider whether you have the quality you want versus other offerings. What do you think?

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  1. angliagt angliagtMember

    Isn’t that Gary’s car? (“Weird Science”)

    Like 4
    • RSparks

      Also Christie Brinkley’s car in the Vegas Vacation movie. She had a car seat in the back with a baby in it. It barely fit with the seat way forward but the reality is the back seat was really meant as not for golf clubs and leather brief cases instead of people.

      Like 0
  2. Tom71MustangsMember

    As I recall, Gary had a difficult time differentiating between the tach and the speedo. 🤣

    Like 4
  3. TomP

    Prepare for all the negative comments from all the people who have never owned a Mondial; your negative comments are dismissed due to having no merit of first-hand experience of ownership. I have one in my garage and its an awesome car in many ways.

    Like 11
    • G Lo

      I’m sure it’s an awesome car. I can’t get past the ugly duckling styling, though.

      Like 2
      • RSparks

        How dare you utter a negative word about the Mondial’s appearance G Lo. Oh wait, what I meant to say was; I dismiss your comment! Oh wait again, saying it isn’t really dismissive at all. Ok…I ignore your comment G Lo. Wait that doesn’t work either. What were we talking about again?

        Like 2
  4. Big C

    I think it’s wonderful that owner’s of these fine sports cars have to pull the engine to change the belts. I’m saddened that I’ll never get that experience.

    Like 9
  5. Gordo

    Wouldn’t it have been nice if Ferrari had used a chain instead of a belt?

    Like 2
    • Bill

      They do, youu always see the buyer wearing a gold one around his neck.

      Like 5
  6. Solosolo UK Solosolo UKMember

    My Mondial convertible came with 16″ tyres instead of the 390mm tyres which were very expensive to replace, so the previous owner supplied the car with the 16″ wheels on the car and the 390mm wheels as spares. I later sold the car on auction, told the buyer that it came with the original wheels and nearly new tyres, but he didn’t have room in his current car to take them and said he would call back later some time. Well, some time never arrived and as far as I know, 9 years later, the auctioneer still has the wheels! A few years earlier I had a Mondial coupe and must say that the Convertible was a much prettier car.

    Like 0
  7. Howie

    The last car i sold was my 92 Mondial T, 93 was the last year for Mondial’s. There is not much info. in the ad, and very poor photos, for that mileage the interior looks ruff, mainly on the driver’s side. It was my first and last Ferrari, i had tons of fun for a few years and did many car shows, and i learned a lot. Mine was the same color. This was the only 4 seat, mid-engine, convertible ever made.

    Like 3
  8. Bill

    Low mileage? More like the highest mileage on a Ferrari to date. Do people have to wear a cape and goggles to drive one in England?

    Like 0
  9. Tompdx

    Very poor photos here, but I think thoughtful angled shots of these cars reveal an attractive car for its vintage and configuration. I can definitely vouch for the motor – same 3.4 V8 that was in my ‘91 348. Very fast and what beautiful sounds it made … especially at WOT above 3k RPMs!

    Like 1
  10. douglas hunt

    I have always loved the Ferraris
    But since the 80’s and speculation fever that seemed to drive the prices to unobtainable levels for a 20 something enthusiast I have simply been an armchair admirer
    I remember in the 2000’s a 100k mile 308 popped up on a used car lot for 30k$
    I would have had to sell my boat to buy it and the mileage put me off
    While querky, I do find the Mondial appealing

    Like 2

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