We’ve seen spy shots of what we (and most others) believed would be the new Ferrari F450. Well, we were very close. The engine is 4.5 litres and custom would suggest the name would be Ferrari F450. But Ferrari has thrown us a curved ball and decided that the F430’s replacement will be the Ferrari 458 Italia.
These are the first pictures of Ferrari’s 458 Italia, released this morning ahead of the official reveal at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. Clearly showing influences from the Enzo and the Mille Chille Concept car, the F430 replacement will undoubtedly go upmarket in terms of price to differentiate it from Ferrari’s entry-level car, the Ferrari California.
Featuring a new, 4.5 litre V8 (hence the name – 458) , Ferrari claim the new engine has the highest specific output of any normally aspirated road-car engine, which is a hard claim to dispute as it produces 127bhp per litre. It produces 562bhp at 9000 rpm, making it the highest revving Ferrari engine to date. All of which makes for the prospect of some scintillating performance. Ferrari are claiming 0-60 mph in around 3.2 seconds, and a top speed north of 200 mph.
The 458 Italia will also feature direct injection for the first time in a mid-engined Ferrari. Almost 400lb/ft of torque arrives at 6000 rpm which – on the face of it – seems a bit peaky. In any other car it would be, but this 458 revs to 9000, so maximum torques arrives at only 65% of the 458’s range. And you do get over 300lb/ft from just 3250 rpm.
Ferrari have taken the 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox from the California and given it a seeing-to. It gets new ratios and now shift quicker than the F430 and more aggressively than in the California. The E-Diff and F1-Trac systems have now been streamlined, with one ECU controlling them and the ABS, which Ferrari claims results in 32% better traction out of bends. The brakes also get tweaked to incorporate ‘Prefill’, which moves the calipers closer to the discs when you lift off the accelerator, resulting in even quicker braking than the F43o (which was no slouch anyway).
As we’ve mentioned before, Ferrari are moving the 458 Italia further up the scale in terms of cost now the California is taking up sales that used to go to the F430. Expect to see prices starting from around £160k when the 458 Italia goes on sale next year in the UK.
As you would expect, there is even more detail in the Ferrari 458 Italia Press Release.