The Ferrari 458 Speciale brings unprecedented speed to the company’s V8-powered supercar as well as moveable aerodynamics that will be applied to future models.
The Speciale will be shown at September’s Frankfurt motor show and follows predecessors such as the 360 Challenge Stradale and 430 Scuderia – including the same design theme of stripes running down the middle of the roof and bonnet.
Before the new technology, first the new benchmarks in engine performance.
The Ferrari 458 Speciale uses an uprated version of the 458 Italia’s 4.5-litre V8 – now producing 445kW at 9000rpm, with 540Nm found at 6000rpm. Ferrari says the result – 99kW per litre of engine capacity – is “the highest specific power output of any road-going naturally aspirated engine”.
No fuel economy figures have been released but emissions are quoted at 275 grams of CO2 per kilometre.
Flooring the accelerator from standstill sees the 1290kg 458 Speciale cross the 100km/h mark in 3.0 seconds, and the 200km/h mark in an equally stunning 9.1 seconds.
Ferrari says the Speciale has lapped its Fiorano test track in 1 minute 23.5 seconds – 1.5 seconds quicker than the regular 458.
The Ferrari Styling Centre and traditional Ferrari design house Pininfarini co-styled the 458 Speciale, with a result claimed to be the most aerodynamically efficient production car in Ferrari’s history.
It’s moveable aero flaps front and rear that take central stage, designed to balance the driver’s need for less drag on straights and increased downforce for cornering.
Ferrari says the Speciale’s advanced active aerodynamics “will become a standard feature on all new Ferraris in the future”.
Another area of noteworthy technology is Side Slip angle Control (SSC). Ferrari says it has developed a clever algorithm that can constantly analyse the 458 Speciale’s sideways angle and then use the car’s traction control system and torque distribution between the rear wheels via the electronic diff to make it “easier to achieve car control at the limit”.
The Ferrari 458 Speciale wears tailor-made Michelin Pilot Sport Cup2 tyres, which have been designed to provide a performance boost over a single lap – like a Formula One qualifying session – before providing improved consistency for subsequent laps.
Ferrari Australia says it’s too early to discuss timing or pricing for the local market.