It’s not something that one would possibly imagine with that description I’ve used of sexy and topless I’ve used to describe the curvaceous Italian beauty dressed in a brilliant coat of red that I set my eyes upon yesterday. With its smooth and sensual curves designed to have heads turning, the object of desire that I refer to is what has been named a Spider – the Ferrari 458 Spider to be precise. The latest addition to Ferrari’s range of dream machines, the 458 Spider, which is being introduced in Singapore, joins the 458 Italia to broaden Ferrari’s range of mid-rear engined V8s. It certainly is one, with its open-top configuration, to be noticed and also to be noticed in – and one that will set hearts racing, not just with its ability to launch its occupants from 0 to 100 km/h in a mere 3.4 seconds – but also with its million dollar price-tag (prices start at S$ 998,000 without COE).
The 458 Spider is one that is packed with innovative features – including its patented fully retractable aluminium alloy hard-top – a world’s first for a sports car of this layout, which folds so compactly that it fits forward of the engine bay allowing a generously spacious rear bench behind the seats of the berlinetta for the storage of luggage. The hard-top also, compared to a conventional soft-top, offers the advantage of weight savings as well as fast retraction – being able to completely retract in 14 seconds.
The 458 Spider is one that packs in 425 kW of pure power in Ferrari’s compact 4.5 litre, naturally aspirated, direct-injection V8 engine which was nominated as the 2011 International Engine of the Year. The V8 drives a Ferrari class-leading dual-clutch F1 paddle-shift transmission through the sophisticated Ferrari E-Diff system. The engine, as well as the clutch and gearbox oil radiators, draw air through intakes which have been integrated with innovative buttresses on the rear of the car designed to optimise the flow of air into the engine bay.
The car also features a generously sized adjustable electric wind stop to slow and diffuse air flow to the cockpit which will allow conversation to be held even at speeds over 200 km/h. The chassis is also designed to provide identical levels of structural rigidity with the roof up or down through new technical solutions. To have a closer inspection of the 458 Spider, do visit Ital Auto, the exclusive distributor of Ferrari, who are now taking orders for the new 458 Spider, at their showroom in Leng Kee Road.
Video of Ferrari’s current range – the 458 Spider is featured at 1’55″:
458 Spider Technical Specifications
Length 4527 mm (178.2 in.)
Width 1937 mm (76.3 in.)
Height 1211 mm (47.7 in.)
Wheelbase 2650 mm (104.3 in.)
Dry weight 1430 kg (3153 lbs)*
Weight/power ratio 2.51 kg/CV (7.42 lbs/kW)
Weight distribution fr/r 42%/58%
Type 90° V8
Displacement 4499 cc (274.5 cu in.)
Maximum power 570 CV (425 kW)** @ 9000 rpm
Maximum torque 540 Nm (398 lbs/ft) @ 6000 rpm
Specific power output 127 CV/l
Compression ratio 12.5:1
Front 235/35 ZR20 8.5”
Rear 295/35 ZR20 10.5”
Maximum speed 320 km/h (198 mph)
0-100 km/h <3.4 s
Fuel consumption + emissions
Fuel consumption*** 11.8 l/100 km
Emissions*** 275 g CO2/km
Dual-clutch, 7-speed F1
E-Diff3, F1-Trac, high-performance ABS
* With forged wheels and Racing seats
** Including 5 CV of ram effect
*** Combined cycle with HELE system (ECE+EUDC)