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Ferrari 458 Italia news - It’s the new Ferrari! - 2009
Today is a good day. Today is your first look at the all-new mid-engined Ferrari, the 458 Italia.
It replaces the F430… and, judging by the numbers, it’s going to be simply astonishing.
First, the engine: a new 4.5-litre direct injection V8 putting out – ready for this? – 562bhp. That’s 79bhp more than the current F430, and 52bhp more than the Scuderia.
We’d heard rumours that the F430 replacement might gain turbochargers, but the 458 Italia remains defiantly naturally aspirated – in fact, at 127bhp per litre, Ferrari says it manages the highest specific output of any naturally aspirated engine ever. It’ll rev all the way up to 9,000rpm too, making it the highest-revving Ferrari of all time.
Add in 398lb ft of torque at 6,000rpm – of which 80 per cent is available from 3,250rpm – and you’re looking at a deeply, deeply fast car.
202mph fast, in fact. And a 0-62mph time of ‘less than 3.4 seconds’. That is unbelievably quick: the F430 hits 62mph in four seconds flat, and even the Scud can only manage a three-point-six. In fact, it’s even faster than an Enzo.
It won’t just be a straight-line monster, either: integrated and remapped versions of the F430’s differential and traction control systems which give the 458 32 per cent more longitudinal acceleration out of corners than its predecessor.
Oh, and see those black winglets on the grille, just under the nose? They’re slightly elastic, and deform downwards at speed to generate downforce, improve aerodynamics and cut drag. The 458, says Ferrari, will generate 140kg of downforce at 124mph. On a track, obviously.
Ferrari has ditched the F430’s F1-derived gearbox in favour of a revised version of the California’s seven-speed dual clutch transmission. Like the rest of the 458, it’ll be blisteringly fast, nailing shifts even quicker than the Scud’s six-millisecond changes.
It’s also good news for economy and emissions (yes, we know that’s the stuff you’re really concerned with here). The 458 will manage a heady 20.7mpg – which is actually pretty respectable in supercar world – and return 320g/km of CO2.
All of that, and we haven’t even talked about the looks. Which is where you lot come in. What do you reckon? A future classic?
Now watch Jeremy thrash the Ferrari F430: