For Auction: 1953 Ferrari Hydroplane ‘Arno XI’
One of the things I love most about the golden years of motorsport are their penchant for the quirky, beautiful and experimental. I love that fearless, visionary people could have an idea, turn it into reality and then go as fast as possible in it.
This 1953 Ferrari Hydroplane ‘Arno XI’ was developed by Achille Castoldi with a little help from Enzo Ferrari. Castoldi wanted to compete with the Guidotti family, who had been using Maserati’s light aluminium engines to power water speed record boats and set records since the ’30s. He, along with Luigi Villoresi, convinced Ferrari to contribute his considerable knowledge and technical expertise to the project, resulting in the Ferrari 375 twin-supercharged G.P. 52/1 “Nautico”, which could produce over 600 horsepower.
This proved plenty, and pushed the Arno XI past 150 miles per hour on Lake Iseo on the 15th of October, 1953, setting a world speed record for its class that still stands today.
The boat spent the next ten years racing successfully, before it was bought by its current owner and restored to concours condition.
It is being offered for auction at RM Auctions’ upcoming Monaco event, which will take place alongside the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique on the 11th and 12th of May, 2012. Set aside €1,000,000 to €1,500,000.
Via RM Auctions
Images via RM Auctions