As one of the most beautiful cars of this (or any other) age, the 458 Italia and Spider are exceptionally tough acts to follow. Yet the 458 Speciale somehow manages to add yet more panache and grace to the vehicle, with a streamlined, lightened frame and stripped-down interior making for a weight of just 1,290kg, and an even greater level of performance and handling.
Following its successful debut at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show, the 458 Speciale is set to enter production soon. Contact Lancaster Ferrari in Essex for further information on this exciting new Ferrari supercar.
In addition to its superb weight distribution and low centre of gravity, the Speciale's raft of active safety features lend it a huge amount of poise at even very high speeds. Its Side Slip Angle Control system assesses lateral acceleration, the angle of yaw and steering wheel, and allocates torque through the Traction Control mechanism to avoid any loss of control.
Specially developed Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres provide a colossal amount of grip, increasing stability still further.
The most obvious difference between the Speciale and its Italia and Spider siblings is the bold blue and white stripe running down the centre of the bonnet.
Nevertheless, the modifications made to its exterior are not only for show. The moveable aerodynamic flaps at the front of the car mitigate downforce and reduce drag, making the Speciale both quicker and more stable.
Meanwhile, the full length grille at the rear helps air circulation and cools the 4.5 litre V8 engine.
The sublime cabin has been just as carefully crafted, with the carbon-fibre seats boasting four-point harnesses similar to those found in racing cars as well as red centre panels and contrast stitching on the steering wheel and dashboard.
The clear, simple instrument panel is dominated by the yellow speedometer, whilst the floor is comprised of lightweight metal without carpeting. The message is clear; this is a car devoted to pace and exhilaration, with little regard for fripperies.
The 4.5 litre V8 engine delivers an extraordinary 597bhp – 133bhp per litre!
Together with maximum torque of 540Nm at 6,000rpm, the Speciale's engine can propel it from 62mph from a standing start in just three seconds, and 124mph in 9.1 seconds.
It is assisted by the manufacturer's superb seven-speed automatic transmission – the same one it uses for its Formula One racing cars.
On track days, it is possible to reach 202mph.
The efficiency of the gearbox also enables the vehicle to achieve improved CO2 emissions of 275g/km - an impressive figure for vehicles in this class.
|Vehicle length||4571 mm / 180 in|
|Vehicle width||1951 mm / 76.8 in|
|Vehicle height||(unladen) 1203 mm / 47.4 in|
|Wheelbase||2650 mm / 104.3 in|
|Unladen weight (DIN)||1290 kg / 2844 lb|
|Engine / Cylinders||V8|
|Max Torque||398 lb ft @ 6000 rpm|
|Max Power||445 kW @ 9000 rpm|
|Top Speed||202 mph|
|Acceleration||0-62 mph / 3.0 sec|
|Combined Cycle||23.9 mpg|