Ferrari manufactured the V8 engines for the 308 model and performed the final assembly in its factory at Maranello. However, the body of the Ferrari 308 was built by Carrozzeria Scaglietti across the road from Ferrari using chassis supplied by Vaccari e Bosi of Modena. Only once Scaglietti had formed, fitted and painted the 308’s Pininfarina-designed bodywork would the completed shell be transported across the road to the Ferrari factory for the fitting of the engine, electrical items, suspension and interior.
Above: 308 production line at Carrozzeria Scaglietti.
This multiple location production process led to an interesting logistical problem.The cars were hand-built. Parts were massaged, fettled and modified to fit at the Scaglietti factory such that parts for one chassis did not fit another. Doors, dashboards headlights were all specific to a single car.
How could Scaglietti and Ferrari identify parts for a car that did not yet have a chassis number? A unique identifier was needed for the entire production process. Scaglietti’s answer was to use a build number. A number allocated at the Scaglietti factory and subsequently written on any part of the car that needed to be associated with a single chassis. Nowadays barcode stickers accompany components on modern production lines but in Maranello in 1978, a red marker pen sufficed.
My car is number 798. I have found it written on numerous parts of the car: behind doors, inside headlight buckets, under the chassis, on the backs of fiberglass door panels and as shown below, on the underside of the dash board:
To Ferrari it was 26359 but Scaglietti built it as 798