Our first official look at the new lightweight, high-performance Ferrari 488 "Sport Special Series" has arrived from Ferrari. The teaser video plays on the car"s motorsport connections by showing it in action on track alongside various Ferrari racing cars. We can get various glimpses of the hardcore 488 in the film with the tradmark bonnet and roof stripe as seen on the 458 Speciale.
It"s no secret that Ferrari has been working on a lighter, more powerful, track biased version of the mid-engined 488. Various spy shots, leaked details and pictures shared on social media have all but confirmed that the successor to the 458 Speciale is nearing readiness. When it arrives, the car will also continue the 360 Challenge Stradale and F430 Scuderia lineage of track-focused mid-engined V8 Ferraris.
The clearest image we"ve seen so far was leaked on Instagram and lines up nicely with some of the spy shots previously published of the lightweight 488. At the front, the bonnet features a dramatic dip, home to a deep aerodynamic trough, while the front apron appears more agressive than on the standard 488.
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Leaked technical details from an internal slideshow confirmed not just the existence of the hardcore 488, but also its power and some of the changes Ferrari has introduced over the regular car. Although the images are low-resolution the slideshow clearly states that this race-bred 488 "Sport Special Series" will feature the most powerful V8 engine in Ferrari’s history.
Well I am sure you have all seen this picture of the new Speciale circulating IG this morning. Looks great but dying to see a proper shot! #ferrari
A post shared by Wops (@woppum) on Jan 23, 2018 at 6:12am PST
In the standard 488 the 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8 develops 661bhp – expect the hardcore model to produce around 700bhp. The engine is also said to be 10 per cent lighter than the standard powertrain.
The ultimate 488 will feature a suite of racing technology such as a ‘race’ gearshift, an ‘extremely’ direct steering ratio and all-new Michelin Sport Cup 2 tyres, along with a front S-duct and a rear diffuser derived from the 488 GTE Le Mans car. The new aero package is claimed to be 20 per cent more aerodynamically efficient than the standard 488. New 20-inch alloy wheels will also be fitted, which are 40 per cent lighter than the wheels fitted on the base model.
Based on the slideshow leak, carbon fibre is the order of the day, the slides claiming that Ferrari’s performance 488 has the ‘highest utilisation of carbon fibre on a range car’. Both front and rear bumpers and the bonnet are made of carbon fibre, as is the active rear spoiler and interior dashboard. Interior luxuries are gone – even the glovebox has been thrown out – while the standard road car’s seats have been replacing by carbon fibre racing seats.
There’s a lot of speculation claiming that the performance 488 will bear the famous GTO badge. In the past, the GTO branding has only appeared on Ferraris every two or three decades and as Ferrari released the 599 GTO in 2010, it may be too soon for a new GTO to be let off the leash by the Italian marque. Ferrari insiders also suggest that a "488 GTO" is unlikely so this flagship version seems set to carry another name.
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