Brian Joss –
Turbo-charged V8 to make its debut at Frankfurt International Motor Show
Ferrari has announced the launch of the 488 Spider, its most powerful ever mid-rear-engined V8 car to feature the patented retractable hard top along with the highest level of technological innovation and with cutting-edge design.
Just like all previous Spider versions of Ferrari’s models, this is a car that is aimed squarely at clients seeking open-air motoring pleasure in a high-performance sports car with an unmistakable Ferrari engine sound.
Every area of the car has been designed to set new technological benchmarks for the sector: from the aluminium space frame chassis and body shell to the new turbo-charged V8, aerodynamics that reconcile the need for greater downforce with reduced drag along with the specific cabin air flow demands of an open-top car, and vehicle dynamics that render it fast, agile and instantly responsive.
The world premiere of the 488 Spider will be at the Frankfurt International Motor Show in September but can be seen in the new Blu Corsa livery at www.ferrari.com.
Beneath the engine cover throbs the 3902 cc turbo-charged V8 that debuted just a few months ago on the 488 GTB. Its performance levels are nothing short of extraordinary: a maximum power output of 670 CV combined with maximum torque of 760 N.m at 3 000 rpm send the 488 Spider sprinting from 0 to 100 km/h in 3 seconds flat and from 0 to 200 km/h in 8.7 seconds. This is also an exceptionally efficient engine as it is not only 100 CV more powerful than the previous naturally-aspirated V8 but also has lower CO2 emissions.
In line with Ferrari tradition, this model has its own absolutely distinctive soundtrack created using solutions such as exhaust headers with longer, equal-length piping and a flat-plane crankshaft. It was also further enhanced by an in-depth study of harmonics and tonality at different engine speeds. The sound is seductive but never invasive when the top is dropped, with both volume and clarity increasing as the engine instantly responds to the accelerator pedal and revs rise, reinforcing the sensation of massive performance.
Designed around the concept of the retractable hard top, the 488 Spider has a spaceframe chassis made of 11 different aluminium alloys combined with other noble metals, such as magnesium, each one used in a highly specific way. This yields the same torsional rigidity and beam stiffness figures as the coupé, improving the chassis’ performance by 23% over that of its predecessor. An extraordinary result, given that the roof is structural, that is only possible thanks to the expertise of the Scaglietti centre of excellence that engineers Ferrari’s aluminium chassis and bodies.
The introduction of a sophisticated simulator, similar to the one used by the Formula 1 Scuderia, allowed the human factor to influence the car’s design from the earliest stages by giving the engineers instant feedback from the test-drivers long before the first 488 prototype was physically built.
To make its dynamic behaviour even more engaging, the development team honed the car’s mechanical set-up in tandem with its electronic systems which are now fully integrated with the SSC2 Side Slip Angle Control System, resulting in 12% faster acceleration out of corners than the 458 Spider.