A solid sleet pelted a organisation of drivers as we over Masseria San Domenico, a hotel built on a drift of a 15th-century watchtower in Puglia, Italy. The coastal roads were lonesome in white, and a windshield wipers of a exam cars were hissing during a heat pitch. Certainly, this was an unlucky morning on that to deteriorate a topless delights of a new Portofino convertible. But even a tainted continue couldn’t moderate a fad about pushing a latest Ferrari. Its achievements in motorsport legendary, Ferrari is equally eminent as a builder of highway cars that have, given a core of a final century, wowed anyone who registers a pulse. Ferrari’s GT cars are generally a things of dreams, as evidenced by a stream value of a 250 GT SWB, a Lusso, or a 275 GTB. More new standouts embody a 365 GTB/4 “Daytona” and a Maranello 550 and 575 models, as good as a oft-ignored 365/400/412 GT array and 456 GT—all primary examples of Ferrari’s assured understatement, magnificently polished aesthetics, and elemental V-12 goodness. Among all a stately GTs from Ferrari’s past, a Daytona, according to designers, was a supposed devout confidant in a growth of a Portofino.
Named after a strand encampment on a Italian Riviera—where it will no doubt be a ideal element to a stylish scene—the Portofino (starting during $210,783) is a healthy inheritor to a California T. And while outwardly similar, they are in fact considerably opposite automobiles. What they have in common is their simple pursuit description: Each is a automobile powered by a front-mid-mounted, twin-turbocharged V-8 engine that drives a back wheels. From there, a engineering organisation took a proven judgment of a California T—the best-selling Ferrari ever—and done it softened from each angle.
The initial angle is in a looks department. Though it has identical proportions to a California T, a Portofino has an all-new framework and physique panels. The designers quite “sweated blood” with a retractable tough top, essay to grasp a loyal fastback pattern but a standard kink in a form during a bottom of a backlight—a fold common by each other example, a Cali T included. With a Portofino, however, a drop-dead-gorgeous coupe turns into an uncompromised automobile pattern in a tiny 14 seconds (while on a go, too) but any clunky, undeveloped drifting buttresses that punctuate a profiles of so many other open-top designs.
Aerodynamics play a outrageous purpose in a Portofino’s appearance, in partial to urge a fellow of drag (by 6 percent over a California T), supplement downforce, and yield additional cooling for a some-more absolute engine. But all this mad-scientist engineering still needs to finish adult looking like a Ferrari—and a Portofino does. Like with an Italian chiaroscuro woodcut, a dance of light and dim on a automobile formula from a contrariety of concave and convex surfaces (a contrariety that also helps control airflow by headlights, front intakes, buffer vents, and a diffuser apparatus during a back to assist aerodynamic and cooling needs).
The Portofino’s form recalls a sly predator, with robust haunches and a slight waist abaft of a absolute chest. (Observe a interplay of rocker panels and circle arches, and suppose a cheetah in suit prisoner by a method of stop-motion photos by Eadweard Muybridge.) Our automobile was white, that would be sin to lovers of red Ferraris, for whom a designers have introduced a special lead paint called—what else?—Rosso Portofino. But a white looked generally right on this car, highlighted by black reduce bodywork, that is also accessible in CO fiber to supplement a tiny additional bling.
The vast news, however, is what’s under a Portofino’s hood: a 591 hp, twin-turbo V-8 engine, adult 40 hp from a California T. The additional extract comes from all-new internals (con rods, pistons, and such) and, importantly, new twin-scroll turbochargers and intake manifolds. Ferrari’s seven-speed F1 dual-clutch delivery puts all a energy to a cement and stays a auto-shift opposite that others should be judged. It’s a power-train multiple that allows a Portofino to pounce from 0 to 62 mph in less than 3.5 seconds and strech a tip speed of 199 mph.
Truth be told, we negotiated many of a four-hour expostulate lane in involuntary mode, with a manettino—the steering-wheel-mounted selector switch—set to Comfort. We did indulge in Sport mode—and a satisfactory bit of primer paddle-shift mischief—on some of a some-more enchanting switchbacks before a continue got too bad. This tiny glitch in a astronomical software—which delivered some-more sleet than a Italian foot had seen in half a decade—also offering such delicacies as black ice. We soldiered through, however, and with a difference of a tiny tail wagging when set to Sport, a Portofino comported itself like a dream.
A lot of that oblivion has to do with a cessation that soaks adult highway irregularities like a loofah sponge. Following routes in Southern Italy creates one consternation how it was probable to go anywhere before a appearance of navigation technology (and a Ferrari’s is excellent). Still, my studious codriver and we unintentionally finished adult on some outback adventures along decomposed slab roads lacing by ancient olive groves. At a time, we wished we had a front-end lift system, nonetheless we needn’t have worried—the front finish never overwhelmed down.
Combining comfort and oppulance with speed and opening is, of course, a genuine pursuit of a grand-touring car. Ultimately, a best of them are easy to drive, severe their pilots usually when asked. And while a few owners might exam their Portofinos on a track, many will wish a car’s categorical goal to be interesting highway miles while carrying a companion—maybe some kids—and a tiny luggage. In courtesy to a latter, a retractable-hardtop apparatus does not drastically concede load capacity, and a case can accommodate 3 roller-type carry-ons (two if a tip is down).
The Portofino’s superb interior facilities 18-way tractable electric seats built on a lightweight magnesium structure that allows a really skinny seatback, adding larger legroom in a front and rear. (A tip of a shawl to story is a Daytona chair choice that recalls a famous design—with seperated inserts—seen on a 365 GTB/4.) Throughout a cabin, contemporary and pleasing expanses of leather are punctuated by china aluminum trim. The 10.25-inch information shade in a core console is easy to strech and read. The vast tach and adjacent TFT displays lay behind a multifunction steering wheel, that incorporates Ferrari’s novel thumb-operated turn-signal switches in further to a invincible manettino drive-mode adjuster. An discretionary shade arrangement sits above a glove box and provides opening information for passengers who have a need to know. Warm-weather pushing is softened with a climate-control complement that provides 20 percent larger atmosphere capacity. In top-down mode, sound and turmoil are reduced by a new breeze deflector that lessens airflow over a physique by 30 percent—not that we had a possibility to reduce a tip for some-more than a moment.
Snaking along a circuitous route, we upheld by tiny towns and country-side dotted with ancient trulli, mill houses and hull capped with cone-shaped roofs that are a architectural signature of a region. In a city of Alberobello, hundreds of a ancestral monuments acted a distinguished contrariety to a organisation of glossy new Ferraris, that took retreat in a categorical square. The juncture gathering home a fact that a Ferrari is all about contrast, in that ancestral models surprise a suggestion of a latest innovations. At once classical and cutting-edge, a Portofino delivers grand-touring opening and pattern estimable of a Ferrari pedigree.
Engine: 3.9-liter twin-turbocharged V-8
Power: 591 hp during 7,500 rpm
Torque: 561 ft lbs during 3,000–5,250 rpm
Transmission: F1 dual-clutch seven-speed
Top Speed: 199 mph
Zero to 62 mph: 3.5 seconds
Curb Weight: 3,668 lbs.
Base Price: $210,783
Ferrari’s Most Coveted Convertibles
Ferrari has a story of creation some of a many pleasing convertibles in a GT kingdom. Among a series-production cars, a 275 GTB/4 NART Spyders—only 10 of that were built from 1967 by 1968—are during a tip of a gourmet pyramid, with values ceiling of $25 million. Close behind is a 250 GT SWB Spyder California, about 51 of that were done from 1960 by 1963; a good one will tip a scale north of $15 million. Worth about half that is a 250 GT California Spyder LWB (Series II)—not accurately chopped liver. Both of a latter models are long, sleek, and definitely chic.
Through a mid-1960s, models like a 275 GTS and 330 GTS took an roughly understated stance; today, they surge into a $2 million range. The kingpin of a 1970s was a 365 GTS/4, famous as a Daytona Spyder, that stays a loyal idol of a age. While roughly 1,300 berlinettas (coupes) were made, 365 GTS/4 convertibles are scarce, with usually 121 factory-built examples produced. The cars became so renouned that shops like Straman used reciprocating saws to emanate replicas, that are now value good reduction than half a value of a $2 million original.
With a appearance of a stream decade, fabric convertibles went a approach of a dodo and folding steel tops became a norm. But whatever a character of a season, it’s a certain gamble that a automobile Ferrari will never go out of fashion.