Daytona Spyder

Jeff Wenger

Like the black Daytona Spyder that appeared on the popular TV show Miami Vice my car is built using a stretched 1980 Corvette chassis with Ferrari-designed body panels and real Ferrari door latches and other hardware. According to Popular Mechanics, the original Miami Vice replica was "spotted on a lot in Newport Beach by the show's producer." Al Mardikian, an auto importer had the two replicas built by Tom McBurnie, but he found himself in legal trouble and the two cars were confiscated by the Feds. The Miami Vice producers in turn purchased the cars from the government at an auction. By the start of the third season, Ferrari executives were getting miffed that the black Daytona was garnering so much attention. The television audience was unaware that the show cars were replicas. The producers intended for the car to be treated as a genuine Ferrari, and Crockett never hints that the Daytona is a replica. Given the constructed reality of television, it is no wonder that the car was treated as real. In any event, Ferrari North America offered to provide two bona-fide Ferraris for Miami Vice, and they chose white Testarossas which appeared for the rest of the series. Only 124 factory spyders were built, and when their values hit $1 million in 1989-91, many 365GTB/4 coupes lost their tops in an attempt to cash in on the boom. Today, a real spyder is worth about $350,000 and chop jobs bring around $150,000. Although fewer replicas were constructed, they are worth considerably less, but maintenance is also considerably less without sacrificing any performance. - Jeff Wenger

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