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By Ben Selby
No, you are not hallucinating by any means. What you see here really exists. A one-off combination of a classic Ferrari 365 GT 2+2 and a 1969 Jeep Wagoneer. Say hello to the “Jerrari,” which is quite possibly the most frightening Frankenstein automotive hybrid creation of all time, and it’s now for sale.
By now you may be thinking, who in their right mind would dare chop up a classic V12 Ferrari GT car and create something this terrifying? Well, it all boils down to American Casino magnate, William ‘Bill’ Harrah.
Harrah was the founder of the Harrah’s Hotel and Casinos chain. He also loved cars. When he wasn’t running his casinos or entertaining his very expensive clientele, he was playing with fast cars from his ever-growing collection.
The story goes that one night, Harrah wanted to drive his Ferrari 365 GT 2+2, so he sent his mechanic to collect it for him. Sadly, said mechanic managed to crash Harrah’s Ferrari while trying to navigate through a blizzard. Whether or not this mechanic remained employed by Harrah remains a mystery, but we can kind of assume not.
The Ferrari was in a pretty poor state, but rather than have it destroyed or fork out a considerable amount of dough to have it restored, Harrah had a lightbulb moment. What if Ferrari made him a four-wheel drive car? He pitched the idea to Enzo Ferrari himself, and was promptly shot down by the Old Man. Il Commendatore would never agree to building a utilitarian vehicle.
Undeterred by Ferrari’s rejection, Harrah found another solution to his project. In 1969, he decided to buy a brand-new Jeep Wagoneer. With the aid of his team of mechanics, he surgically attached the front of his wrecked Ferrari, which was the only part still intact, to the Wagoneer. A few stylistic tweaks here and there and hey presto, the Jerrari was born.
If you think this was a quick cut and shut job, you would be wrong. Harrah was a perfectionist, and insisted his team did not cut any corners during the build process.
The finished product was built to an incredibly high standard. Harrah even managed to salvage the Ferrari’s V12 for use in the Jerrari. Sadly, the open gated five speed manual gearbox wasn’t easy to bring over. Instead, Harrah mated the V12 to the Jeep’s column shift three speed automatic box.
Believe it or not, this was one of two Jerraris built. Harrah transplanted the Ferrari V12 into a second Jeep dubbed “Jerrari 2.”
The car you see here is the original, and runs a 5.9L Chevrolet V8 donk. Its listing in Germany says the Jerrari has been fully restored and has covered only 7,000 miles. Price for the Jerrari is available on request.
While the Jerrari is certainly the weirdest love child from this marriage of Jeep and Ferrari, one could argue there was method in Harrah’s madness.
His creation predicted not only the merging of Ferrari’s parent company Fiat and the Chrysler Corporation, but also the six figure 600hp Super SUV as we know it today. Maybe Harrah knew something we didn’t?