Ferrari has revealed the 458 Challenge racing car at this week’s Bologna Motor Show destined for a one-make series from 2011
It seems Ferrari had a bit of an issue when they decided they wanted to take the 458 Italia racing – it was just so good in standard form. So instead of giving the 458 Italia more power, they concentrated on making the 458 lighter and tighter to create the Ferrari 458 Challenge, unveiled this week in Bologna.
The 458 Challenge gets exactly the same 562 horses out of its 4.5 litre V8 as the Italia. Changes do come to the gear ratios and the setup of the F1 gearbox to generate more torque at lower revs to make the 458 Challenge better on track.
Under the skin – which is lighter thanks to thinner body panels – Ferrari has installed stiffer springs and lowered the ride height, upgraded the brakes to Brembo’s latest and greatest bit of kit and installed the ABS from the 599xx. The 458 Challenge also gets Ferrari’s E-Diff and F1-Trac, systems designed for the road which Ferrari now deem suitable for the track.
Ferrari has declined to come up with full performance specs for the 458 Challenge, but we do know that the 458 Challenge will go round Fiorano two seconds than a stock spec 458 Italia. How much of the difference is accounted for by track slicks on the 458 Challenge we don’t know, but the tweaks to the ‘box and suspension and the lower weight have obviously made the 458 Challenge more hardcore than the Italia.
But not much quicker.