The new turbocharged Ferrari California T made its Australasian debut today sporting a $50k cut to the price of entry over the outgoing model.
Due to start arriving in right-hand-drive guise from the fourth quarter of this year, the new California T is 7mm longer and 8mm wider than its five-year-old predecessor, but most notably has seen the original's 338kW/485Nm naturally aspirated 4.3-litre V8 dropped for a twin-turbocharged 3.9-litre direct-injection V8 engine.
A reworked version of the new Maserati Quattroporte’s 390kW/710Nm twin-turbo 3.8-litre V8, the Ferrari unit sends 412kW (at 7500rpm) and 755Nm (at 4750rpm) to the rear wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission – a 74kW/270Nm increase over the previous atmo California.
The boosted outputs result in a 0.2sec faster 0-100km/h time (3.6 seconds) and a 2.1sec improvement in its 0-200km/h sprint time (now taking 11.2 seconds). Top speed has also gone up 6km/h to 316km/h.
Apart from upping performance, efficiency numbers have also been bettered with fuel consumption and CO2
emissions falling to 10.5L/100km and 250g/km respectively, representing around a 20 per cent improvement for both.
Taking inspiration from the V12-powered F12 Berlinetta and classic 250 Testarossa, the sharper and more aggressive-looking California T sits on redesigned 19-inch wheels and features a new suspension set-up that includes 11 per cent stiffer springs and the latest-generation of adaptive Magnaride dampers – claimed to now react to body roll and pitch more than 50 per cent faster.
The latest evolution of Ferrari’s F1-Trac stability control system is also on board along with a new steering box, 10 per cent quicker steering rack, and 390mm front and 360mm rear CCM3 carbon-ceramic brakes – the latter promising to halt the car from 100km/h in 34 metres.
Despite the 2+2 convertible’s subtle exterior changes, Ferrari says the only thing carried over from the previous model is the retractable hardtop roof and the model’s overall dimensions.
Two new and exclusive colours have been added to the California’s exterior paint palette – Rosso California (Red) and Blue California (Blue) – while inside, Ferrari claims customers can chose from up to 15 million different colour combinations.
Speaking at today's static launch event in Melbourne, Ferrari Australasia president and CEO Herbert Appleroth reiterated the company's view of the California model as "an everyday Ferrari".
"Not so much a revolution but more of an evolution … the California's about versatility … and was designed to be as ergonomic as possible," Appleroth said.
The Maranello-based company says 70 per cent of original California buyers were new to the Ferrari brand, with the vehicle racking up 30 per cent more annual millage and 50 per cent higher daily usage compared to any other Ferrari.
The first ever Ferrari to wear the California moniker was the 250 GT California back in 1957.
Click here to see the full local launch image gallery.