Because You’re Dying to Know the Difference Between a Dino 206 and a 246
March 15 Feature Photo: The "Poor Person's Ferrari." (Hah!) Happy Monday.
If you live anywhere near the Boston area, try to check out the Larz Anderson Auto Museum at some point. Especially during one of the themed lawn event car shows that take place on the grounds every year. Here’s a picture I took at Italian Car Day 2009; I find the image’s simplicity very soothing.
March 15, 2021 Car Bibles Feature Photo Details
- Car(s): Dino
- Location: Brookline, MA (Larz Anderson Auto Museum)
- Photog: Me (or my pops, I actually can’t remember.)
- Camera: Olympus Stylus Tough 6000
Dino was “lower-budget” sub-brand of Ferrari for a while there, and frankly I’m surprised it’s never been revived for the modern era. I guess there might be too much overlap with Alfa Romeo and Maserati (all three are part of Stellantis’ corporate empire), but whatever. A line of Ferraris (or even a single model) priced close to a base Porsche 911 would be really cool.
As of this writing the “cheaper” end of the 2021 Ferrari lineup would be the Roma, which still lists for over $200,000. A super low-weight/low-cost Fiat 124/Miata-level car would be amazing but I’d even like to see what a modern Dino at $100,000 might look like.
Anyway, back to the Dinos of yesteryear – there were two models in particular that looked extremely similar but were in fact different cars: the 206 GT and the 246 GT. The 206 was both products of the late 1960s, while the 246 debuted in ’70. At a glance, the car in the photo above could be either one. But despite a remarkably similar design, a keen spotter would note that the later 246 had a fuel filler flap, two rear-view mirrors, and wheels with five exposed lug nuts while the 206 most notably had cool three-spoke center cap spin-offs on its wheels.
The 246 GT was actually a tiny bit longer, too. And of course it had 2418cc of displacement verses the 206’s 1987cc, but you can’t really tell which engine the car has from the exterior now can you?
If you’re really stumped trying to figure out which you’re looking at… chances are it’s a 246, as very few 206s were even built. According to a few of the publications cited in the next paragraph, only 152 Dino 206 GTs were produced before the displacement moved up to make the 246 model. The later one isn’t a common car either, but apparently over 3,700 were made.
There’s an article in Evo you can read here that actually gets into the specific differences and has an amazing photo album of the pair together so you can really play “spot the differences” and figure out which is which. There’s a post in Automobile you should check out if you want to know a little more about Dino history, and finally, this post on the Goodwood Road & Racing website has a nice rundown on how the two cars are to drive in comparison to each other.
So which model are you looking at in the photo? A Dino 206 or a 246?