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£206,955 when new
What is it? Pretty self-explanatory, really. It’s the Ferrari 458 Speciale the quicker, harder, more aggressive 458 variant now with the retractable hard top from the Spider. There are only 499 being made, all for Ferrari ‘collectors’, unfortunately. I say ‘unfortunately’, because this is one of the greats and I can see it being seen in the same light as the 360 Challenge Stradale and 430 Scuderia before it. The mechanical bits for the roof add about 50kg over the standard Coupe Speciale (making it 1340kg dry, 1445kg kerb weight), but the rest is pretty much the same. Interestingly, Ferrari says this is the most aerodynamically efficient Spider in its history, with a drag co-efficient of 1.37 that delivers high downforce (Cl 0.485) combined with low drag (Cd 0.355). If anyone can explain those numbers in a way I’d understand, then answers on a postcard, please. I just know, having driven it, that it’s very fast, hitting 62mph in 3.0 seconds dead and 124 in 9.5. The top end is a possible 199mph, but we weren’t in a position to test that. Or I’d now be in jail, or smeared across the Italian countryside in an abstract manner. The Speciale? Remind me? Well, you know how lovely the 458 is to drive? It’s that, but turned up. So it’s a mite less gentle, but a lot more focused. Not quite Porsche GT3 RS levels of commitment, but certainly noticeably sharper.