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First Ferrari comparison: 328 vs 348

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by A12pilot, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. A12pilot

    A12pilot Rookie

    Aug 11, 2018
    37
    Central TX
    Full Name:
    Dave
    Hey Gang,

    As I’ve posted before, I’m in the market for my first Ferrari and will be purchasing something this summer for sure. The two models I’m looking at are a 1994 348 Spider and a 1986 328GTS. So, given the two models, with all things being equal like up to date maintenance and condition/miles, between the two, what would be your choice for the more favorable model to buy and why? Better resale/investment on the 328? Newer model on the 348? Just a friendly discussion here as I’m just starting my search but I’m narrowing down on a few very nice examples. So, would you pick a 328 or a 348 as a first Ferrari and why?:confused:

    Thanks guys!

    Cheers
    Dave
     
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  2. 2cam

    2cam Formula Junior

    Aug 28, 2014
    465
    Austin, Texas
    Full Name:
    MikeS
    Hi Dave. I like both the 328s and the 348s. However, I would personally lean toward a 328 as it's known to be one of the easiest to service, reliable, and easy to live with of the classic V8 Ferraris. The cars have very few issues. The 348s are great cars as well, but don't seem to carry the same stellar reputation as the 328.

    2cam
     
  3. hardtop

    hardtop F1 World Champ

    Jan 31, 2002
    11,211
    Colorado
    Full Name:
    Dave
    I have owned both and driven them extensively including track time. In my case, I had an 89 GTB and a 94 TB challenge. If I were to buy one again, I'd go with a 328. For starters, they are prettier and much easier/cheaper to live with. Handling wise, neither can hold a candle to newer cars but I found the 328 more enjoyable primarily because it was more predictable and communicative. Neither is likely to be a good investment after factoring in all the costs. Just buy the one you like and enjoy.
     
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  4. A12pilot

    A12pilot Rookie

    Aug 11, 2018
    37
    Central TX
    Full Name:
    Dave
    Good thoughts, guys. “Buy the car you like and enjoy.”.....excellent advice! I do like both of them and my initial search started with only 348, then it morphed a little to include the 328s. I realize for whatever reason, that the popularity of the 348 isn’t exactly up there with other models, but it’s still a sharp car in my book. Thanks for your thoughts!

    Cheers
    Dave
     
  5. jimpo1

    jimpo1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Jul 30, 2001
    21,807
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    Jim E
    I've owned a 328 for 17+ years so take my $.02 with a grain of salt, but I'd buy a 328 before a 348.

    1. Lower cost maintenance. You have to drop the engine in a 348 for a belt service, 328 can be done from the wheel well.
    2. Classic design. IMO, still one of the best looking cars of the last 50 years.
    3. The best of a 14 year model run. Everything they learned starting in 1976 got rolled into the 328.
    4. Potential price appreciation? 348's have always been relatively unloved. 328's aren't and have never been.

    The 348 will give you more performance for your $ though.
     
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  6. A12pilot

    A12pilot Rookie

    Aug 11, 2018
    37
    Central TX
    Full Name:
    Dave
    Good thoughts. I’m more of a classic car (60s\70s Muscle cars) guy and really dig the lines of the 328 the more I look at them. Yet, my Inital love of the Ferrari was a Testarossa, which is why I was leaning on the 348 with the cheese grater sides. Harkens to that style.

    Man....what to do.....

    These are good thoughts on both models. I guess it’s a good problem to have.... to consider purchasing a Ferrari at all! :cool:Thanks guys.

    Cheers
    Dave
     
  7. Robb

    Robb F1 World Champ
    Owner Lifetime Rossa

    Feb 28, 2004
    10,723
    Mesa, Arizona
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    Robb Williamson
    I’ve owned a 328 and now 355

    I’d go 328 out of the cars you mention. Both 328 and 348 will feel old. That can be good and bad. 355 seemed to be the first car to not really feel old even today. 360 is also in same price bracket and will give you lots more interior room. 328 by far cheapest of all F-cars in Maint.

    I’d go look at and experience a 355 first and even 360 then your answer in similar price brackets might be clearer. Do you a classic or more modern car. There are examples in all these with similar purchase prices.

    Robb
     
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  8. jimpo1

    jimpo1 Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Jul 30, 2001
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    I wanted a 355 when I bought the 328. Wanted one for years afterwards. Quit wanting one when I witnessed the maintenance costs from friends. I still think it's gorgeous.
     
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  9. JimEakin

    JimEakin Formula Junior
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    Jun 13, 2015
    811
    Southeast OC
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    Jim
    How fast to you want to go?
     
  10. 4rePhill

    4rePhill F1 Veteran

    Oct 18, 2009
    7,734
    Worcester, England
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    Phill J
    Having to drop the 348 engine out does have a couple of advantages:

    1) You can guarantee that the engine coolant was changed at the same time the belt was changed.
    2) It gives the mechanic a great opportunity to check for issues on all of the engine, and fix them for less cost (removing the engine in a 348 is a piece of p:censored:ss compared with a 308/328! ;))


    The advantages of the 348 over the 328 are:

    1) Better performance - The 348 is noticeably faster than a 328.
    2) Less body roll - The 348 sits flatter through the corners than a 328.
    3) Better steering - As good as the 328's steering is, the 348 is noted for having some of the best, most direct steering Ferrari ever made.
    4) A 348 will cost a lot less to by than a 328 - Leaving more money for running costs.

    So based on all of that, and having owned a 348 TS, which one would I buy?: A 328 every time!

    As much as I loved my 348, the 308/328 GTB/GTS series is simply the most beautiful design ever. It's perfect from every angle, and it's a truly iconic Ferrari!

    (I missed out on owning a 328 GTS here in the UK because by the time I was ready to buy, the market took off, and £35K cars suddenly became £70K cars. The 348 market was slower to take off, and I just caught the market in time)
     
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  11. 2cam

    2cam Formula Junior

    Aug 28, 2014
    465
    Austin, Texas
    Full Name:
    MikeS
    I think that the OP has stated before that he's had a '97 Viper. None of these are going to be "'97 Viper Fast". ;)

    2cam
     
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  12. Ryan...

    Ryan... Karting

    Nov 9, 2012
    175
    WI
    I did a double take when I saw this thread pop up, you asked the question I've been mulling over for the past couple weeks!

    I also fall into the camp where I like the 348, but keep getting drawn to the more classic 328/308 cars as well.


    For me, a big part of my decision will come down to realistic cost of ownership. I know the engine out service of the 348 is going to run approx $4800-6000 according to a local trusted shop. Price for similar 3-5 year services on a 328? They said it "Should be" cheaper, but with the age of the cars you never know what you'll find when it gets to the shop. What parts are NLA or simply harder to find for the older cars? Is the performance gap going to feel much different between the 348 vs 328?

    Lots of good questions, I'll be following this thread with great interest.
     
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  13. efes9

    efes9 Karting

    Oct 22, 2014
    196
    #13 efes9, Mar 14, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
    348 for me:
    • 348 spider is a real convertible (vs "Targa" top on the 328)
    • 348 spider was a lower production and more rare car (about 1,1xx or; not sure of the 328 but I suspect more)
    • Subjectively, I prefer the strakes and sledgehammer looks vs the the more organic 328. Again, this is very subjective
    • Performance: IMO, the 348 offers the perfect level of performance. I can drive at 4/10ths, 8/10ths or even in anger at 11/10ths, and always feel in control. Plus, it always is a thrill. The 328 in my experience, with the less open targa top, and slower pace, simply lacks the thrill factor (and the 360 is just too fast to drive at 11/10ths (or even 8/10ths))
    I agree the maintenance costs are not for the faint of heart, but I suspect a 328 really isn't a Toyota either.

    In the end, go with the one that appeals to you more on an emotional level. I suspect you will not regret it
     
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  14. Rica

    Rica Rookie

    Jan 27, 2014
    8
    Santa Rosa
    My first Ferrari is a 348. I’ve owned it for 5 years now and I absolutely love it. Coming up on my first “engine out” and I’m not looking forward to the expense (especially her in California). Having said that, I wouldn’t trade it for a 328 or 308. I haven’t owned those two but drove them before I decided on the 348. In the 5 years I’ve owned the car my only expenses have been the annual fluids. Starts every time, never overheats and is a blast to drive. Quick enough for me too.
    So that’s my 2 cents worth!

    Ric
     
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  15. Rosso328

    Rosso328 F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Dec 11, 2006
    5,494
    Central FL
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    Paul
    It's pretty darn close. I had a long time Ferrari mechanic call the 328 "The closest thing to a Toyota ever to come out of Italy."
     
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  16. nerofer

    nerofer F1 World Champ

    Mar 26, 2011
    10,001
    FRANCE
    Not starting a war here, but flak vest on nevertheless...

    The performance of the 328 and 348 is exactly the same; I still have a german article at home (which, I think, is quoted in extension in "Autos, die Geschichte machten: die Ferrari 308 und 328 from Dirk-Michael Konradt) which attests of the disappointment of the press at the arrival of the 348 on the market, saying that they had been waiting for a new Ferrari for almost 14 years (= 1975 to 1989), to discover a car that indeed was more powerful by 30 hp, but also heavier by 70 kilos, which completly negates the gain in power, as the power to weight ration is...exactly the same.

    Comparing exactly indentical models (328 GTB vs 348 TB) and measuring all acceleration and pick-up, their conclusion was that, up to 160 kph (= 100 mph) there was absolutely no difference whatsoever in performance beteween the two cars in acceleration or pick-up, and that, being lighter, the 328 was in fact a trifle quicker. Only above 160 kph / 100 mph did the 348 had a slight margin. Their conclusion was that the overall better performer was in fact the 328.

    That being said...the question of performance is rather academic nowadays. The true difference in performance would be between a 328 (or a 348) and a 355. But the 355 costs are not for the faint hearted.

    Regarding maintenance costs: I have two 328s in the garage, a '89 GTB (bought in September 2008) and a '89 GTS (bought in January 2011): yes a well sorted 328 is probably the cheapest Ferrari you can find maintenance-wise.
    Outside normal maintenance operation, I have not encountered the slightest trouble (ah yes: a broken exhaust pipe on rear manifold of the GTB on December 31st this year...)
    Providing that you always keep in mind that these cars were built in small series, so nothing is granted, and that you might always have some unexpected trouble, so its is useful to keep a cushion of, let's say, about 5 grands if needed.

    In the end, it gets down to personal preference; Try both, then buy the one that floats you boat.

    Rgds
     
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  17. DrewH

    DrewH F1 Rookie
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    Nov 4, 2003
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    Vancouver, BC Canada
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    Andrew
    If you read my 355 history it would extra reinforce your opinion.
     
  18. JimEakin

    JimEakin Formula Junior
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    Jun 13, 2015
    811
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    The only thing I didn't like about my 348 was car wash time. All those slats on the sides and louvers on the engine cover were really a pain to deal with.
     
  19. Ed Niles

    Ed Niles Formula 3
    Honorary

    Sep 7, 2004
    2,416
    West Hills, CA
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    Edwin K. Niles
    I have a 328GTS with interesting history and multiple Platinum awards. I'm thinking of selling due to my age (94). edniles@sbcglobal.net if you are interested. And yes, the reputation of the 328 is far better than the 348.
     
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  20. allandwf

    allandwf Karting

    Aug 27, 2011
    152
    Scotland UK
    I can never understand the big negative about having to drop the 348 engine. It was designed to be dropped. It makes everything else which may be overlooked easy to access change etc, while out. As to op's question, it's a difficult one. The last of the classic 308 shapes, or the last of the old school Enzo era cars? Tough one.
     
  21. ross

    ross Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Mar 25, 2002
    28,756
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    Ross
    my vote is the 328. not because i have ever owned one, but because i had a 348ts, and it was the worst car i have ever owned.
     
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  22. Texas Forever

    Texas Forever Three Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed

    Apr 28, 2003
    38,937
    Texas!
    God bless you man. I just lost my mother at 95. It wasn't her time. but hospitals have turned into killing fields for the elderly. I'll say more later. My advice is to get a concierge doctor to represent you.
     
  23. Ingenere

    Ingenere F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Dec 11, 2001
    5,857
    On the Limit
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    Dino
    I hope that (if I make it to 95), I'm still driving exotics. Well done, my friend!

    If the shifting is getting to you...... try a 360 F1. They are pretty cool and does some of the work for us!

    I have had a Euro 308QV and a 348. Loved them both. Tracked, hillclimbed, trips, everything. The 348 was a serious step forward. I have always done a lot of my own services. The 308 was a dawdle. The 348 was a PIA. Getting that engine out with jack stands is a chore. Dealers hit you with a book labor charge of 20 hours in/out. That is BS. Myself and a buddy could get it out in 3 and back in 3.5.
     
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  24. Xtreme5053

    Xtreme5053 Formula Junior
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    Aug 20, 2006
    296
    Cheese grater...

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    https://www.instagram.com/p/BuPsbrXlo6_/?utm_source=ig_share_sheet&igshid=1niumv8pnpcov



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  25. ross

    ross Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Mar 25, 2002
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    you are my hero !
    i will definitely be sending this to my dad. he is 80 now, and still going strong. i tell him he needs to stay limber and strong so he can drive all our cars!
     
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