What’s more thrilling than driving a Ferrari 488 Pista around a track? Driving an open top version, of course. And here it is. The new Ferrari 488 Pista Spider.

Ferrari has unveiled the chopped-top version at the 2018 Paris Motor Show this week for its European debut, featuring all of the hardcore goodness from the coupe version only with a removable roof to amp up the exhilaration. This includes the 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8 engine that sits just over the shoulders of the passengers.

This engine has been awarded the Best Engine in the 2018 International Engine of the Year Awards, and produces a crazy 530kW and 770Nm. In front of it is a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission with rear-wheel drive. Across the 0-100km/h dash, Ferrari claims it takes just 2.85 seconds. 2.85 seconds! That’s so insanely quick, especially for a rear-wheel drive car.

It’s not all about straight-line speed, though. The 488 Pista is just as much about cornering. Accordingly, it comes with a bespoke suspension package with recalibrated SCM-E dampers, and springs that are 10 per cent stiffer. Longitudinal acceleration is 13 per cent higher than on the 488 Spider.

There’s also some intense aerodynamics going on, with a custom body that provides a 20 per cent improvement in aero efficiency over the regular Spider. And in fact, some of the extra engine performance is thanks to the bodywork. Ferrari says there’s a reduction of almost 15 degrees Celsius in air temperature entering the plenum due to the special ducting. Downforce is also increased, by 18 per cent overall.

When it comes time to hit the anchors, the Ferrari 488 Pista Spider uses 398mm front and 360mm rear discs. And again, special ducting helps to optimise the stopping performance. A set of Michelin Sport Cup 2 tyres also help, and these can be wrapped around optional 20-inch single-piece carbon fibre wheels that are 20 per cent lighter in weight.

Stepping into to the office, Ferrari has stripped out most of the unnecessary weight-adding luxuries. There are two carbon fibre instrument clusters that house all the information the driver needs, while most of the furniture and structures are made from carbon fibre and covered in Alcantara if needed. Contrast stitching, special tread plates and a glovebox replaced by a storage pocket completes the package.

The new model is the 50th drop-top convertible introduced by Ferrari, and also the most powerful. Order books are open now, although pricing hasn’t been formally presented. Check out the full specs below for more.

Maverick
I like to think that I'm a car fanatic, but more of a driving fanatic. There's nothing better than getting out onto the open road, almost regardless of the car, and enjoying dancing with the controls and gathering up the moving scenery. If I'm not driving I'm either at the gym or sinking a few beers with friends.




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