1999 Ferrari 456 M GTA from Italy - Comments

25th Dec 2005, 14:25

I have a 456 '96 and have owned it for a year. Unless you get a peach, then assume £3-4k to get it right. Minor services £500 through to major and cam belt hit £2.5k. Assume 15mph and look to First Alternative (UK) for insurance.

30th May 2006, 13:26

I have a 1999 456mGTA that I purchased in mid 2003. At that time the car had 4500 miles on it. The purchase price was about 40% of the new car price. It is probably depreciating, but for sure not like the 60% over the first 3.5 years! The car had been, and still is, serviced by Ferrari of Houston. I had a few problems with the car, mainly minor electronics, until recently. The problem was that a pulley that is attached to the front of the crankshaft became detached from the crankshaft. Not completely, just loose so it would slip and move slightly back and forth on the end of the crankshaft. This pulley was vulcanized to the crankshaft, if you can imagine that. This resulted in tearing up the belts that drive the fan, alternator, etc. The cost of this repair was $3,500.00. While the car was in the shop I had the timing belts replaced and the 15K service, at a cost of approx $9,500.00. I hope I am good for the next 4 years as far as belts are concerned.

Today the car has 12,000 miles on it. Mainly to and from my office and out to dinner/night club in the evenings. No long road trips. I drive the car on nice days, but occasionally get caught in the rain.

Problems: The windows do not seal real well, but no too much of a leak problem. The rubber parts on the interior, like air conditioning vents, the ashtray cover, around the steering column, are deteriorating. They are now at the point of feeling sticky and some black comes off on your finger tips when you touch them. I had the same problem with my 1989 348TS. You would think Ferrari would learn how to make a rubber part, especially after 10 years of the rubber deteriorating on earlier models. Quite an irritation so I will probably have to replace those rubber parts one of these days. Ferrari North America says "don't put Armor-all on the rubber parts". Pretty lame excuse as my car never had anything of the sort on the rubber, and when removed, the back, unexposed side of every part was just as bad as the front (exposed) side.

Rock made a crack in my windshield. I found a chip repair guy that fixed it pretty well, and is almost invisible. Of course, you can't find a replacement Ferrari windshield except from the dealer. Replacement cost, with gasket, trim, labor and glass $4,000.00.

Impressions: I get compliments all the time about what a beautiful car it is. Mine is black on black, with Tubi exhaust. It sounds pretty good. I like the way it looks. If you think Ferrari should only be stick shift, you will be disappointed to know that standard shift and clutches will be a thing of the past for new Ferraris. Paddle shift/ automatic technology makes clutches obsolete. Sure, I will miss the gated shifter. The same way I miss timing lights and distributor points. Ferrari is sort of a non-car, so don't expect it to be up to par as far as reliability and care free driving with Porsche or BMW. You can say what you like about Porsche and BMW, but when the valet puts those cars out in the parking lot, you can be sure your Ferrari will be parked beside the front door.

18th Nov 2006, 01:26

Thank you for the last story, I'm considering changing my 355GTS for a 456 here in the UK - as approaching 45 and want something a bit less like a go-kart and slightly more relaxing to drive (but no auto!). Appreciate your comments on the costs - however just having spent £2,800 sterling last night on a failed scavenger oil pump (they have 6 gears and are only available at £6,000 as a complete assembly - so find a good 2nd market support garage who can strip them down and refurb! I can recommend one here in London) and other sundries - any car driven hard can suffer. I do about 15,000 miles a year - the 355 has stood up to it better than I dared dream (had six 911's before doing over 100,000 miles in each so they set the benchmark), most of it across the Cotswolds and M4, so am really curious on whether the "lazy V12" can cope as well, brakes wear bad etc?

I've a Tubi exhaust on the 355 which makes the hair on ones head stand up as it snarls and wails, echoing across hills and valleys, does the exhaust on a 456 make you grin every morning at 6am? My dog recognises the sound now - so will ignore any other cars passing the house, but wakes up and barks for the Ferrari when I arrive home at night - would be a shame to waste such a cool trick for a less recognisable burble!

I accept the cost of running Ferrari's - but do expect them to start every day (I had a 348TS which was a DOG! - if you are in that market - always spend the extra on a 355 - otherwise you spend a year cursing yourself and not having any value in saving the £8k difference)

Previous comments on the wheel size are interesting - I agree the standard just look too small, and have seen one with the 550 wheels - they seem to fill out the gaps - does anyone have any other comments on price of these? Handling effects, Bearing wear issues etc?

Regards - David.

15th Dec 2006, 13:20

I love the simplistic shape of the 456. If you have seen older touring Ferraris, you may notice that they share more of that theme. Look at the 412, while it is more spacious interior wise, it doesn’t have the same elegance of the 456. Though, I have never seen a Ferrari that didn’t capture my attention. I figure it just is some ones preference if they like it or not. I am not biased to one type of car or another as far as what is superior. I do know that the older Vettes are not as reliable as the new ones. The new Z06 is more of a round town driver than most Ferraris. However, I know of many people who love to use their exotic touring cars and sports cars regularly. You just need to make sure you aren’t abusive to the vehicle. Not only will it cost you, but you can also find yourself in a heap of trouble as well. Read articles written on the car you want. See what the test drivers recommend as well. Experience speaks volumes. I never imagined when Ferrari started his company that he intended for them to be daily drivers. He meant for them to be powerful and reliable cars if you knew how to take care of them.

16th Dec 2006, 09:41

Actually, initially Enzo didn't care how the cars were used because the only reason he started making street cars was to finance his racing endeavors. Quality was secondary to image, and not every Ferrari was the best of its field, and some were quite mediocre.

While the 465 is one of the best looking and "practical" Ferraris ever, I remember reading Car and Driver when they took a NEW one through the southwest. All sorts of electrical failures popped up, including headlights that would open and close at will.