Dubbed the Ferrari P540 Superfast Aperta, the unique supercar has been built for Edward Walson, the American son of John Walson, the inventor of cable TV. His inspiration for the car was a 1968 Federico Fellini film, “Toby Dammit” inspired by one of the tales of Edgar Allan Poe, which contained a unique Ferrari built by Carrozzeria Fantuzzi specifically for the film.
“I had always dreamed of designing sports cars,” Edward Walson explains, “and when I saw this film the decision came of its own accord: one day I would have ‘my’ Ferrari.”
Although based on the Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano, considerable changes were required as 599 GTB is a Coupe and the P540 is an open topped car and, like all Portfolio projects, the unique Ferrari had all the same safety and homologation requirements of normal production road car.
The car was designed by Pininfarina and built at the Ferrari factory in Maranello. The client was directly involved in each stage of its development. As the 599 GTB Fiorano donor car is a coupé, considerable effort went into strengthening the chassis by using finite element analysis in development and the increase in weight was kept down to just 20kg by employing carbon-fibre extensively. From the initial sketches to the final, road-legal car took just 14 months.
As the Edward Walson took delivery of the car at the Ferrari test track, Fiorano, his excitement was understandable: “This is the most special Christmas present of my life!”
With Ferrari Australia