2007 Ferrari F430 Spider 2017-12-11T15:25:29+00:00

Project Description

OVERVIEW

You know the F430 Spider is going to be good as soon as you turn the key and press the little red button marked “Start” on the steering wheel. The 4.3-liter V8 snaps awake with a bark and a flourish of revs, announcing its intentions to the world. It’s hard not to smile at the car’s exuberance.

Pushed hard, the F430 Spider happily delivers the goods. With 490 horsepower on tap, this Ferrari is a proper supercar, pressing you back in the seat at you push the roaring engine to 8,500 rpm before you tug the shift paddle on the right and grab the next gear. The F430’s handling is sublime, with light steering, quick turn-in, impressive grip and real user-friendliness. The brakes deliver astonishing stopping power and excellent pedal feel.

This Ferrari is a truly thrilling companion for a dance down your favorite back road, but there’s a second, gentler personality lurking underneath. On the highway and around town, the F430 is impressively comfortable for something so fast and capable. That being said, it’s happiest on twisty back roads, away from more pedestrian vehicles that might spoil the fun.

The Spider is more than 100 pounds heavier and a tenth slower to 60 mph, but you certainly won’t be thinking about such academic concerns when the engine’s music envelops the open cockpit at speed. Yet if you keep the revs down and the windows up, the Spider delivers a refined touring experience.

OVERVIEW

You know the F430 Spider is going to be good as soon as you turn the key and press the little red button marked “Start” on the steering wheel. The 4.3-liter V8 snaps awake with a bark and a flourish of revs, announcing its intentions to the world. It’s hard not to smile at the car’s exuberance.

Pushed hard, the F430 Spider happily delivers the goods. With 490 horsepower on tap, this Ferrari is a proper supercar, pressing you back in the seat at you push the roaring engine to 8,500 rpm before you tug the shift paddle on the right and grab the next gear. The F430’s handling is sublime, with light steering, quick turn-in, impressive grip and real user-friendliness. The brakes deliver astonishing stopping power and excellent pedal feel.

This Ferrari is a truly thrilling companion for a dance down your favorite back road, but there’s a second, gentler personality lurking underneath. On the highway and around town, the F430 is impressively comfortable for something so fast and capable. That being said, it’s happiest on twisty back roads, away from more pedestrian vehicles that might spoil the fun.

The Spider is more than 100 pounds heavier and a tenth slower to 60 mph, but you certainly won’t be thinking about such academic concerns when the engine’s music envelops the open cockpit at speed. Yet if you keep the revs down and the windows up, the Spider delivers a refined touring experience.

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A LOOK IN THE REAR VIEW

Barring some unexpected external force, evolution normally proceeds in small steps. Thus, it was no surprise that the Ferrari F430 was based on the 360 Modena. But while all of the major concepts were carried over –all-aluminum construction, wind tunnel-driven design, mid-mounted high-revving V8 engine, all-around usability, optional paddle shifters and carbon-ceramic breaks — the new car blew its predecessor into the proverbial weeds.

The biggest changes appeared in the engine bay, where the F430 sported an all-new, 4.3-liter V8 that pumped out 490 horsepower and 343 lb-ft of torque–90hp and 68 lb-ft more than the regular 360, and 65 hp over the Challenge Stradale. This engine, which produced nearly 114 h/liter of displacement, helped launch the F430 from 0-60 mph in 4.0 seconds and on to a top speed of 196 mph.

Also boosting the F430’s performance was a new, Formula 1-derived, electronic differential and the now-ubiquitous steering wheel-mounted manettino. This rotary switch allowed the driver to select various dynamic modes, such as Wet, Sport, and Race, which deliver specific combinations of shock-absorber stiffness, traction-control intervention, gearshift speeds (on F1 transmission-equipped cars) and so on. Further bolstering the car’s sporting credentials were a stiffer chassis, a faster-shifting F1 gearbox, more downforce without additional drag, and bigger wheels and tires.

Ferrari produced four versions of the F430. The first, the Berlinetta, was unveiled at the Paris Auto Show in 2004. The following year, a convertible version debuted. The only differences between Berlinetta and Spider were the latter’s power rag top, exposed roll-over bars and rear deck, which featured a glass window through which the engine was visible.

A LOOK IN THE REAR VIEW

Barring some unexpected external force, evolution normally proceeds in small steps. Thus, it was no surprise that the Ferrari F430 was based on the 360 Modena. But while all of the major concepts were carried over –all-aluminum construction, wind tunnel-driven design, mid-mounted high-revving V8 engine, all-around usability, optional paddle shifters and carbon-ceramic breaks — the new car blew its predecessor into the proverbial weeds.

The biggest changes appeared in the engine bay, where the F430 sported an all-new, 4.3-liter V8 that pumped out 490 horsepower and 343 lb-ft of torque–90hp and 68 lb-ft more than the regular 360, and 65 hp over the Challenge Stradale. This engine, which produced nearly 114 h/liter of displacement, helped launch the F430 from 0-60 mph in 4.0 seconds and on to a top speed of 196 mph.

Also boosting the F430’s performance was a new, Formula 1-derived, electronic differential and the now-ubiquitous steering wheel-mounted manettino. This rotary switch allowed the driver to select various dynamic modes, such as Wet, Sport, and Race, which deliver specific combinations of shock-absorber stiffness, traction-control intervention, gearshift speeds (on F1 transmission-equipped cars) and so on. Further bolstering the car’s sporting credentials were a stiffer chassis, a faster-shifting F1 gearbox, more downforce without additional drag, and bigger wheels and tires.

Ferrari produced four versions of the F430. The first, the Berlinetta, was unveiled at the Paris Auto Show in 2004. The following year, a convertible version debuted. The only differences between Berlinetta and Spider were the latter’s power rag top, exposed roll-over bars and rear deck, which featured a glass window through which the engine was visible.

WORD ON THE STREET

“It’s a delicious, utterly intoxicating engine noise, one that encourages you to use every last one of the 8500 revs that are on tap before you finger-flick the paddle shifter back and engage third gear, just like that.”

Mark Gillies, Automobile Magazine

“Ferrari has nothing for the common cold, but if you suffer worries, boredom, grouchiness, or that debilitating ennui that settles in on Sunday afternoons around four o’clock, it has a hot new pill, and you won’t need to call the doctor in the morning.”

Aaron Robinson, Car and Driver

“The F430 is more than a cold-blooded G-force generator. It’s a total experience, one that dopes every pleasure receptor in your brain with automotive giddiness. Achieving that abstract goal is always trickier than hitting hard performance targets — call it the alchemy of desirability.

You get the impression that in designing the F430, Ferrari’s every decision was framed by the question, ‘How can we make this more like a Formula One car?”

Ezra Dyer, New York Times

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