Ferrari 308 GTB (Group 4 / B)

Published on: Jan 18, 2016 @ 17:01
Originally Published in: 2014 (old website)
(C) Jay Auger - website owner & author
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Ferrari 308 GTB – Group 4


First produced in 1975 by the well known Italian sports car maker, the Ferrari 308 was evidently not built for rallying in mind, nor was it produced expressly for homologation purposes. However, some privateers, such as “Nico” Grosoli, thought that the car would perform well in tarmac rallies in Italy and events around Europe. For the 308, it would be the beginning of a journey in rallying that would last about a decade.



Ferrari went on with Group 4 homologation in 1976 to satisfy its racing customers, later sparking the idea to have purpose-built 308 rally cars. Ferrari however didn’t want to get directly involved due to its prior commitments in Formula One so they referred these special customers to partner Michelotto instead. The well-known race engineering firm, with some assistance from Ferrari,  would devise a Group 4 rally package which was implemented in 11 customer cars. The first of these cars was delivered to rally driver “Nico” Grosoli, whom partly funded the project.

The chassis was tweaked with lighter tubular sections made out of steel and titanium. The engine bay was modified to allow quicker access and maintenance of vital parts. The engine output was improved by increasing the compression ratio and fitted with a mechanical fuel injection system instead of carburettors. Reliability was aided by a pair of front-mounted oil coolers. In Group 4 form, the 308 was rated around 290 to 330 BHP.

It is notable to mention that, besides its transfer from Group 4, the 308 GTB was homologated three times into Group B; October of 1982, January of 1983, and again in April of 1983. This was done expressly to homologate different components such as bodywork panels in different material compositions and additional performance parts, including variations on its engine. The fact that the 308 was still being produced in this period made these homologations possible, otherwise Michelotto/Ferrari would have needed to build 20 evolution units – which in all likelihood would never have been done.

In 1983, this allowed Michelotto to update the rally package with polycarbonate screens and other performance options to take advantage of the looser Group B regulations. Use of the new Quattrovalvole engine made up to 400 BHP possible in the rally cars. The firm would build 4 customer units under the new specifications. Sadly, the Group B cars turned out to be somewhat unreliable in comparison to their more proven Group 4 brethren.

Similarly to the BMW M1, the 308 GTB was very expensive to race and maintain, appearing in only three World Rally Championship (WRC) events when the national and international competition calendars overlapped. The best WRC result of the car being a 2nd place finish at the 1982 Tour de Corse rally in the capable hands of Jean-Claude Andruet.

The Ferrari 308 GTB was ultimately never used as a factory “works” entry but the Maranello company witnessed the privateer cars perform rather well on European (ERC) and Italian (IRC) Rally Championship tarmac venues. In the 1982 Group 4 to Group B transitional year, the 308 GTB would rake up four wins and two second places in the ERC with names like Andruet, Tognana and Busseni behind the wheel – the latter two also sharing a total of six podiums in the IRC.

In 1983, the Ferrari 308 GTB’s past successes in Group 4 were seriously overshadowed by the new prime Group B contender from Italy: the Lancia Rallye 037 – the 308 GTB only achieving one podium in the ERC and the IRC, respectively. Since both brands were part of the FIAT group, the effort was heavily concentrated on the 037 – the 308 owners left to fend for themselves.

1984 would however bring the old prancing horse one last hurrah with a total of six ERC podiums, but always finishing second best to the Lancia 037. The 308 GTB would subsequently never see another podium in the ERC or IRC – its rally career disappearing into the night after a decade in the sun.

The early triumphs of the 308 GTB did however made Ferrari contemplate a bespoke Group B version, the 308 GT/M, subsequently designing and producing the incredibly potent 288 GTO and its Evoluzione variant which were specifically intended for Group B homologation in endurance circuit racing before the infamous 1986 ban on the category put an end to all aspirations.


  • 4
  • B/12

  • # 648 (Group 4)
  • # B-220 (Group B)
  • B-236 (Group B)
  • # B-241 (Group B)
  • click # to view papers
Years active 1976~86 Homologation start:

  • November 1st 1976 (Group 4)
  • October 1st 1982 (Group B)
  • January 1st 1983 (Group B)

Homologation end:

  • December 31st 1987 (Group B)
Type Tipo F106A, V8, DOHC 32v, gas located middle-transverse, 90 degree V8
Displacement 2927 cc WRC = 2927 cc
Compression ratio N/A
Output power – torque
  • 330 HP @ 8000 rpm
  • (400 HP reported possible)
– lb-ft (- Nm) @ – rpm
Materials block: aluminium cylinder head: aluminium
  • Normal / Natural
  • Bosch K-Jetronic Fuel Injection
Ignition N/A
Cooling system water-cooled
Lubrication system dry sump dual oil coolers (front-mounted)
Type rear-wheel drive 5-speed manual gearbox
Gearbox ratios N/A N/A
Differential ratios N/A ZF type 50~80% limited-slip rear differential
Clutch hydraulic
Type steel tubular spaceframe with roll cage, lightweight fiberglass bodyshell
Front suspension double wishbones, coil springs, anti-roll bar
Rear suspension double wishbones, coil springs, anti-roll bar
Steering system rack and pinion N/A
Brakes AP 4-pot calipers, 305 mm vented discs both front and rear. dual-circuit with servo, pedalbox with adjustable brake-bias
length: 4230 mm (166.5 in) width: 1820 mm (71.7 in) height: 1120 mm (44.1 in)
wheelbase: 2340 mm (92.1 in) front track: 1500 mm (59.0 in) rear track: 1500 mm (59.0 in)
Rims – tires
  • Front: 8×15″
  • Rear: 12×15″
  • Front: 18/60-15
  • Rear: 29/61-15 (335/35)
Dry/Unladen Weight 980~1030 kg (2160~2270 lb)
Weight/power 3.2 kg/HP (7.0 lb/HP)
Fuel tank N/A



Styled by renowned design firm Pininfarina, the Ferrari 308 came in many versions and specifications over its 11 year production run from 1975 to 1985. In fact, it was homologated no less than four times (once in Group 4, thrice in Group B) to allow customers to compete with the various spec’d cars.

The 308 platform, along with the GT/M prototype, was the main technical basis for the incredible 288 GTO Group B homologation supercar and its Evoluzione racing variant – both sadly never raced before the infamous 1986 Group B ban. The overall concept would however ultimately transfer to the legendary Ferrari F40 – credited in reviving the supercar craze alongside the equally legendary Porsche 959.

Ferrari 308 – technical view

ANECDOTE: In popular culture, the Ferrari 308 was made famous by the television series Magnum, P.I. which ran from 1980 to 1988. The series’ main protagonist, played by Tom Selleck, drove the car around the Hawaii island of Oahu while on his investigations. The 308 also appeared a few times in the National Lampoon’s Vacation films, driven by model Christie Brinkley.


The following specifications are for highest spec’d of the Group B homologated 308 GTBs: the European Quattrovalvole (QV) version.

Class Grand Touring Homologations:

  • # 648 (Group 4)
  • # B-220 (Group B)
  • B-236 (Group B)
  • # B-241 (Group B)
  • click # to view papers
  • 1975~85 (12,004 total 308 units)
  • 1982~85 (748 GTB QV units)
Assembly: Maranello, Italy
Type F105AB, V8, DOHC 32v, gas located middle transverse, 90 degree V8
Displacement 2927 cc
Compression ratio 8.8:1
Output power – torque 245 HP @ 7000 rpm 180 lb-ft (243 Nm) @ 4600 rpm
Materials block: light alloy cylinder head: light alloy
  • Normal / Natural
  • Bosch K-Jetronic Fuel Injection
Ignition Marelli MED 803A Digiplex electronic ignition system
Cooling system water-cooled
Lubrication system wet sump N/A
Type rear-wheel drive 5 speed manual gearbox
Gearbox ratios N/A N/A
Differential ratios N/A limited slip rear differential
Clutch hydraulic
Type steel tubular spaceframe, steel bodyshell
Front suspension double wishbones, coil springs, anti-roll bar
Rear suspension double wishbones, coil springs, anti-roll bar
Steering system rack and pinion N/A
Brakes ventilated discs, all-round
length: 4230 mm (166.5 in) width: 1720 mm (67.7 in) height: 1120 mm (44.1 in)
wheelbase: 2340 mm (92.1 in) front track: 1460 mm (57.5 in) rear track: 1460 mm (57.5 in)
Rims – tires
Curb Weight 1286 kg (2835 lb)
Weight/power 5.2 kg/HP (11.6 lb/HP)
Fuel tank N/A



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 Ferrari 308, 328 & 348: The Complete Story

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Group 4 Group 4 – From Stratos to quattro (English)

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  • Jean R. – event error fix