The Ferrari 488 Pista Spider's 710 hp Will Blow Your Hair Off

This is the Ferrari 488 Pista Spider. The most powerful production convertible in the company's history. With an engine and aero package taken from the company's GT cars and 50 hp more than the boring old regular 488 Spider.

The 488 Pista's 3.9L twin-turbo V8 is the most powerful the company has ever made. It boasts 710 hp at 8,000 rpm and 568 lb-ft, though the Ferrari spec sheet specifies the torque peak as coming in seventh gear. Though it's not likely exactly lacking in that department in the lower cogs.

That's thanks to a new engine intake layout borrowed from the 488 Challenge. It sees the intakes moved from the flanks to the rear spoiler area for a larger volume of cleaner air. It also frees up space for a bigger intercooler. Inconel exhaust manifolds, a lighter crank, and titanium connecting rods all helped to shave an impressive 18 kg from the engine. The pistons and heads have been strengthened to cope with the extra power.

Ferrari says that the noise has been increased too. "The sound level is higher than the 488 Spider in all gears and at all engine speeds." Plus that open-top makes it easier to appreciate than in the fixed roof 488.

The seven-speed gearbox uses torque management to ensure that the car delivers that power smoothly in each gear. Less smoothly, shift times are shortened by 30 ms in Race mode cutting them to, well, we're not sure but they must be getting close to zero at this point.

The Pista's aero changes start with the rake of the radiators. Like the 488 Challenge cars, they're now inclined toward the rear and direct hot air to the underbody. That helped boost intercooler performance 10 percent and reduced drag. 

Ferrari redesigned the bumper and hood with a Formula 1-derived S-Duct. It directs air from the bumper intake through a special duct before exiting through the hood. That puts more downforce on the front axle. There's also a more effective front splitter. The wider and longer rear spoiler adds 25 percent of the car's new downforce. All the changes mean a top speed of 340 km/h.

The company calls the handling an "unparalleled and genuinely immersive driving experience." That's thanks to changes like a new version of side slip control, improved braking, and new Michelin Sport Cup 2 tires. It also has springs that are 10 percent stiffer and recalibrated dampers to suit. The 20-inch single piece carbon-fibre wheels are a first for Ferrari with a special coating to dissipate heat.

Inside, the car gets new carbon-fibre instrumetn clusters around the main panel. The glove compartment is gone altogether, instead you get "handy storage pockets." Which might be the first time Ferrari and handy have been used in the same press release. The rest of the interior is spartan with carbon and Alcantara throughout, with foot plates instead of carpet and fabric door pulls.

The 488 Pista also offers seven years of scheduled maintenance included. Because you've got 710 more important things to worry about.

No news yet on when it will arrive, but if you want one you'd best get your order in.


Even if it's real 10/2/2018 5:20:33 PM