Dino 246 - Best Ferraris ever

When Enzo Ferrari wanted a mid-engined model, he started with a smaller rival to the Porsche 911

Years: 1969-1974Engine: 2.4-litre V6, 195bhpTransmission: Five-speed manual, rear-wheel driveTop speed: 148mphNumber built: 3,761Current value: £300,000

The Dino name plate arrived in 1968, and the 246 is the pinnacle of this Ferrari sub-brand. There was a time when Enzo Ferrari couldn't envisage his cars being powered by anything other than a V12 engine, and when the Scuderia needed smaller V6 and V8 engines to be competitive in racing, as well as a small sports car to compete with the Porsche 911, the separate Dino brand was born.

The Dino name plate comes from the nickname of Ferrari's son and heir Alfredo, who died when he was only 24. Dino was one of the few people to influence Enzo's decision to abandon V12 power in favour of smaller units, and he even had plans to create a racing V6. Racing at the time required a certain number of engines to be built for them to qualify, and as Ferrari couldn't meet these demands by itself, the company joined forces with Fiat to build its new V6.

The 2.0-litre engine first appeared in the front-engined 1966 Fiat Dino, but then Ferrari produced the mid-engined Dino in 1968. It was Ferrari's first mid-engined road car, as Enzo felt that the lower power output of the V6 meant it was more acceptable to produce as a mid-engined car than any of Ferrari's V12 powered cars.

The first Dino had a modest 2.0-litre capacity, but the 246 had a 2.4-litre V6. These cars carried the 206 and 246 numbers in reference to their overall engine capacity and number of cylinders, a tradition continued by the later 308, 328 and 348 models. While the Dino 206 and 246 looked similar, there were more differences under the skin than just a bigger engine. Only 152 206 GTs were built, chiefly because of the complexities of its aluminum bodywork. The later 246 had steel construction and nearly 3,800 were built. A claimed top speed of 146mph was competitive for the era, and the Dino was a strong rival for the Porsche 911.

The Dino brand was around for eight years, but the later Dino 308 GT4 was rebadged as a Ferrari in 1976, consigning the Dino brand to history.

Recommended

Apple iPhone designer Jony Ive to work with Ferrari
Marc Newson and Jonathan Ive
Ferrari

Apple iPhone designer Jony Ive to work with Ferrari

New collaboration will see ‘creative projects’ in the luxury sector but stops short of confirming automotive plans
28 Sep 2021
GTO Engineering unveils Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder remake at Goodwood Revival
Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder remake - front static
Ferrari

GTO Engineering unveils Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder remake at Goodwood Revival

Ferrari specialist GTO Engineering reveals recreation of one of Maranello’s finest at this year’s Goodwood Revival
15 Sep 2021
Ferrari unveils three-quarter-scale 250 Testa Rossa EV replica
Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa EV replica
Ferrari

Ferrari unveils three-quarter-scale 250 Testa Rossa EV replica

The Ferrari Testa Rossa J children’s ride-on was built in tandem with The Little Car Company, and will cost around £79,000 before taxes
9 Aug 2021
Ferrari Classiche: restoring Maranello's classics
Ferrari Classiche
Ferrari

Ferrari Classiche: restoring Maranello's classics

We head to Italy to see how Ferrari Classiche is keeping the brand's classics in concours condition
23 Jul 2021

Most Popular

New Kia EV6 2021 review
Kia EV6 front tracking
Kia EV6

New Kia EV6 2021 review

With a sporty drive, 300-plus miles of range and plenty of tech - could the new Kia EV6 be one of the best electric cars on sale?
19 Oct 2021
The best 0% finance car deals 2021
Best 0% finance car deals - header
Best cars & vans

The best 0% finance car deals 2021

Tempted by a 0% APR deal? Here are our best 0% finance deals starting from only £145...
21 Oct 2021
New Michelin Uptis airless tyre blows in ahead of 2024 launch
Michelin Uptis
News

New Michelin Uptis airless tyre blows in ahead of 2024 launch

The new airless Michelin Uptis is made from rubber and fibreglass and promises to be longer lasting, fuel-saving and recyclable
20 Oct 2021