Ferrari record holder Arno XI powerboat for sale
If you want to set a world record for speed, what better choice of engine than one from Ferrari.
In the early part of the 1950’s, on the shores of Lake Como in northern Italy, Achille Castoldi approached the Timossi boatyard and handed them some sketches for a powerboat and said “I want to set a new world record for speed”. He envisioned a three point hardwood hull, which would hydroplane on the water to reach the breakneck speeds required. To do this he brought along with him a Ferrari V12 4.5 litre engine. He wanted to keep the boat light as he was aiming for the 800kg speed category record. The powerboat was christened the Arno XI.
As the boat builders decided to use Ferrari’s colour of choice, Rosso Corsa, the Italian manufacture found out what was being built and sent engineers to investigate. The information they returned with made its way up the chain to Enzo Ferrari, who insisted in helping set the record. Enzo wanted to help Castoldi by any means, so he donated a new engine for the project. It was the same 4.5 litre V12, but this double compression modified engine was donated from the 1951 Formula One Ferrari 375, the same engine that took the victory at Silverstone that same year.
Castoldi further increased the performance output by installing two superchargers, increasing the power output to 502bhp. With the powerboat built and the backing of Enzo Ferrari himself, the stage was set to write history. They transported the vessel to Lake Iseo, the fourth largest lake in the Lombardy region of Italy. After a couple of practice runs, Achille Castoldi throttled up the engine and set off for the timed run. As the boat lifted out the water and started to skim the surface, the speed increased and maxed out at 150mph ( 242kph ) before gradually slowing back down and finishing at the opposite end of the lake.
Success. He had broken the world record and to this day it still holds the trophy for the fastest powerboat in the 800kg category. However, on its final run the engine gave in and ceased to function. Over time the engine was lovingly restored by Classiche, Ferrari’s own in-house professional restorers and the Arno XI has been paraded at boat shows the world over since. The current owners of the Arno have decided its ready for a new home and its now up for auction with the DuPoint Registry, who specialise in rare and exotic car models. You have to contact them for any indication on price, which already suggests it will be costly. A figure as been circling at around £1.5 million, so you made need to open your piggy bank.