As the 750 was introduced in 1954, the smaller 500 Mondial was replaced by another two liter car, the 500 TR. The first car to bear the famed Testa Rossa name, the 500 TR differed from the Mondial in many details. Among the most important was a coil spring suspension, a radical departure for Ferrari, as well as a synchronized transmission with a two-disc clutch. The 500 TR continued its predecessors tradition of light weight, coming in at just 680 kg (1500 lb), and this combined with the engine's 190 hp (142 kW) to bring stirring performance to the car.

Scaglietti built most of the 500 TRs, with three also constructed by Carrozzeria Touring, and the design aped the 750 Monza including the faired-in headrest.