About Me

mondial_racer.jpg

Welcome to the crazy journey of Vintage Ferrari ownership. Some might say I’m a masochist. Well, I love cars, and love Ferrari so here we go!

I grew in car land (Los Angeles) and now call the San Francisco Bay area home (Menlo Park to be exact) – I’ve always enjoyed following automobiles, and of course always loved exotic cars (especially Ferrari)

I bought this Mondial after a lifelong desire to own a Ferrari. The opportunity presented itself when a person donated this car to the Catholic Church.

A $27,000 Donation and I have my very own Ferrari.

The Mondial often got criticism due to the ‘compromises’ Ferrari took in creating it (4 seats, heavier, longer wheelbase) — criticisms that all are strengths for a Ferrari in my current life stage.

Here are the ten reasons why the Mondial is my “dream” car:

1) It is a Ferrari – let’s face it – the mystique, exclusivity, heritage, and the backing of an active marque – there is a lot of history and emotional equity with the nameplate. I’ve considered myself very individualistic; I wanted my car to reflect that. There is a plethora of Porsche’s, Bimmers, Mercs, and Audis where I live – I wanted something that was unique – Ferrari accomplishes that, and in spades. Yes, there is other exotic nameplates – but do they have the F1 heritage as well? (the past, present, and future)

2) I wanted a “sporty” vehicle that was fun to drive – no dispute here – Yes, the Mondial is not a “fast” car relatively (I do not want any flames here) – However, it is fast enough for a family man driving two children in the back. If I want a track car, I would buy a new Corvette, and be done with it.

3) I wanted a convertible – I’ve always felt true convertibles distilled the touring car experience.

4) I wanted four seats to share the experience with my whole family or 3 friends. (good thing I have kids and not full-grown adults for the back seat)

5) I’ve always liked the notion of a “mid-engine” – I like having the roar of the engine behind you – it has been auditory exciting to have the mechanical orchestra feel like they are on my shoulders.

6) I wanted a car that was already at the “dip” of its value – A car that is what it is – no further depreciation or loss of relevance. I feel the Mondial is at the base camp toward the mountain of future appreciation. Yes, the Mondial is often denigrated as the ‘false Ferrari, poor man’s Ferrari, etc.) the same once said about the Dino and said about the California. Two cars that I adore; I say let the haters hate let the drivers drive.

7) Manual Transmission – Modern automatics are marvels. Able to shift faster than humans – I acknowledge this -, but if people do not understand why the tactile pleasure of shifting gears is so important – they probably also do n’t get it why somebody would go fishing instead of going to the fish market.  Also two words: Gated Shifter.

8) Ascetically pleasing – I’ve always like the look of Mondial – I think it is a profoundly beautiful car – I acknowledge this is entirely subjective and in the eye of the beholder – these eyes have judged, and judged positively.

9) Rear wheel drive – I respect sports cars with all-wheel drive. However, I’ve felt that in the right conditions – rear wheel drive is a lot more fun.

10) Community – A family of people that allow me to do what I’m doing now. Sharing my passion for the marque with like good minded folks such as one reading this now. I have come to appreciate the “Ferrari” family.  From invitation events for owners only, to local clubs, the fellowship has been amazing.

If somebody can find me something that meets all 10 of these requirements at *any cost* – send me a note! I have yet to find another car that meets these requirements.

***
Involved in email and database marketing positions at companies as large as Fortune 500 and as small as fledgling startups. Today, consulting Google on Marketing Technology.

Visit my personal site to learn more:

http://www.paulchua.com

37 Comments on “About Me

  1. Welcome to the club – I too have a “Nero” Modial T (and also a 6 & 8 year old for the back). the car is a blast with the family and friends all ask questions (since they all have BMW, etc…) Best of luck in your adventures – I can relate to all your posts and have had some similar and enjoying luck.

    • Hi Jake!

      Thank you so much for your kind comments!! I really appreciate the warm welcome and look forward to chatting with you in the future! Happy New Year to you and your family!!

      Cheers

  2. Hi Guys and fellow Ferrari Owners! I have a Red Mondial T. Please find it on Facebook! Seach for Mondial T, and you find me:-) I am 34 years old, and bought it restored it completely my self! Check it out, and please LIKE!

  3. me too… i’m sending mine to carobu engineering to rip out the 2.5 motronic and install a modern (single programable ECU) fuel injection/ignition system and put a fuse block in that can hold and distribute a current. love the car! replaced the trans with a 348 box and a slick sift gate, delta-Ve did the suspension. the exhaust is a one off and trying to decide how far i want to go to reduce weight. all fun stuff.

    • Hi Todd, thanks for your comment!! Would love to hear about your experience with the ECU upgrade – Enjoy the car!!!

  4. http://www.pinterest.com/tdwestby/ an alfa guy turned me onto a local shop for the ferrari and turns out he had the same model ducati i have and can help me with that too.
    see how it goes. whole family has enjoyed the car. although my youngest son likes the maserati the most. keep u posted.

  5. Hey Paul. Nice site. I saw your post on Ferrari chat. I’m heading to San Fran this weekend. I’ll keep,and eye out for your Mondial!

  6. Hi Paul, Great site buddy – I have just purchased a 3.4 T – so am looking forward to everything it brings – good thinking on your 10 reasons – Mondials are only going to be more and more appreciated from here on in I reckon!!

    • Thanks for your kind words Peter. I can tell you that I have no regretted a single day owning the car. It’s been an absolute joy!

  7. Thanks for keeping up the passion for older “unloved” Ferraris! I have always liked the Mondial T Coupe and am looking for one now….any suggestions? They are hard to find….

    • Thank you for your kind words Bob…the coupes are very hard to find in America because only around 300 across the 4 model types were ever imported…if your heart is set on a coupe – there are good deals to be had in Europe…

      Cheers

  8. Was a V6 or 2-litre V8 (tax special) version of the Mondial during development ever considered, along with a post-Mondial 8-cylinder mid-engined 2+2 successor during the mid/late-90s?

    Have to admit as someone who is not a fan of Ferraris that have come to appreciate the looks of the Ferrari Mondial,though believe it would have looked much better without the pop-up headlights, curious to know whether anyone did a version of the Ferrari Mondial without pop-up headlights ideally a more tasteful execution of the Ferrari 412 Pavesi Ventorosso and Ferrari 412 Scaglietti.

    • Hi Reggie, thanks for your post. I think 2.0 liter V8 was considered but was ultimately abandoned in favor of Fuel Injection. The bad press for 2+2 mid engine was so strong, I don’t think Ferrari will ever try to revisit that concept again (nor any other car maker.) The Lotus Evora is another car that has divided opinions. I have not heard any coachbuilder modify the Mondial.

      Cheers

      • Thanks clearing things up.

        Would it have made a difference to the Ferrari Mondial if the 2-litre V8 featured fuel-injection like on the 2-litre V8 Turbocharged engined Ferrari 328 GTB Turbo / GTS Turbo, let alone the regular 2-litre V8 Turbo unit (as opposed to the non-turbocharged 2-litre V8)?

      • Hi Reggie,
        Thanks again for your post! I think it would have been a big improvement! Ferrari decided, however, to just stick to NA for the normal road cars to avoid turbo lag. My personal opinion is that the damage was so great with the 3.0 Liter FI engines, that the Mondial was just never ever to shake the performance stigma, even though it was quickly rectified with the 3.0 QV, 3.2 and definitely the 3.4 Tipo 119a

        You can always check the competition at the Wikipedia page here:
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ferrari_Mondial#Competitor_comparisons

        You’ll see that the Mondial could more than hold it’s own against the competition at the time. The Mondial 8, however, was still what laymen thought of when the car was brought up in all subsequent retrospective conversation.

        this is not exacty a bad thing – it’s made Ferrari ownership much more affordabel versus if the truth got out!!!

  9. Is it known beyond the 3586cc engine later used in the Ferrari 360 whether the Dino V8 was capable of being further enlarged to 4-litres or more?

  10. Hi,
    I’m Max from Italy and finally after a lot of years and dreams I bought a Ferrari! The great Mondial T!!!
    Thank you pal for open this wonderful website, great job with many info!!!

    • Prego Max,
      Grazie for your kind post, and congratulations on your car! Come visit us on Ferrarichat.com and I look forward to talking to you!
      Ciao!

      • Fantastic idea man, see you there!
        Ciao
        M

  11. I want to ask Paul what exhaust setup is on his black Mondial t… it sounds Exceptional! And I’d love to know how that sound can be repeated. Thanks

      • Thanks a lot Paul. So there is no aftermarket sport cats OR Headers? Just the Muffler itself is all it took to get that GREAT sound you enjoy? Fantastic!!

  12. Thanks, Doug, I appreciate your kind words!

    Stock US Cats, and headers. If you take the cats and upgrade the headers, it will be an ultra screamer. Sound almost as good as an F355, though I like the 348/Mondial t over the 206/246/308/328.

    The F430/458 and cars afterward all sound great too, but very different – something artificial about it (though not saying they are fake, just engineered to sound a certain way.) There seemed to be less emphasis earlier over-engineering the sound. The new cars have a more ‘rumbling’ which many like, I like the high-pitched scream-like sound, which in the F355 is perfect in my subjective opinion.

  13. Those comments are very insightful and I agree ! It just so happens that I have a 355 GTS with a Tubi and Fabspeed Sport Cats. The sound it makes is Epic and after 13 years with it….It still makes the Adrenaline Flow..never gets old for sure.Thanks for your thoughts.

    • Good man! I would hang on to that F355 for life. Ferrari hit the bullseye with that model in terms of what it truly means to have a Ferrari. Nothing sounds as good ever since!
      Best wishes to you!

  14. Thank you again. When I get a Mondial T coupe in Black/Tan I will let you know.Always wanted one I can say… well…. since the first time I saw a black/ tan T coupe at Auburn Indiana about 20 years ago.. could not forget how impressed I was with its looks.Great to see your passion !

    • Thank you Doug once again for your kind words – I wish you the very best and don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions. Cheers

      • Give me a call Paul if you want to give me some advice and perspective on Mondial T ownership as I pulled the trigger on a Black/ Tan Sunroof coupe and I will tell you more about the 355 GTS 😃I’m in eastern time zone at 419- 296-7918.Thank You and I’ve done a lot of research but still have plenty to learn also.i want to find out if my car is the MotorWeek car if possible ?..?

  15. Hi Doug, thanks for your note. I actually encourage you to sign up at ferrarichat.com and we can carry the conversation there. I’m a moderator there, come join the Mondial forum and introduce yourself. It’s a great community, and our discourse will no doubt be of great interest to others.

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