The 412’s basic shape lasted from 1972 all the way through to 1989, and that it looked as fresh at the end of the eighties as it did when it was unveiled almost two decades previously is testament to the clarity and vision of Pininfarina’s Leonardo Fioravanti’s design.
The 412 replaced the 400 introducing a higher boot line and a deeper front spoiler to improve its aerodynamics. The changes, which were also penned by the Pininfarina studio, included body-coloured bumper inserts, different sill panels, clear indicator lenses, and black windscreen and window surrounds.
The fuel-injected V12 engine displaces 4943cc, enough for 340bhp, a 0-60mph time of 6.7 seconds, and a top speed of 155mph. Almost still the Daytona engine, albeit easier to maintain thanks to fuel-injection rather than six carburettors, just 576 were built – and of those, just 55 were right-hand-drive UK cars.
ABS-brakes stopped metric alloy wheels shod with Michelin TRX rubber and 2+2 seating made it (almost) a family car, which may explain why half of those who bought one opted for the three-speed automatic gearbox like the one you’re looking at here.
It would then be another three years before a 2+2 model appeared in the Ferrari catalogue again, and nearly seven years before the Italian firm offered another with an automatic transmission.