It combines the finest race-developed technological solutions with the joy of en plein air driving to deliver an exhilarating experience behind the wheel.
The model’s engine, dynamics and aerodynamics are derived from two track cars: the 488 Challenge and the 488 GTE. The latter won the GT class of the FIA World Endurance Championship in 2017, thus giving Ferrari a total of five GT Manufacturers’ titles since the championship’s inception in 2012. Furthermore, this model has very clearly benefited from the extensive development work done to produce the coupé version, the 488 Pista.
Ferrari 488 Pista Spider
The Ferrari 488 Pista Spider sports the most powerful V8 engine in Maranello history which was also named Best Engine for the third consecutive year at the 2018 International Engine of the Year Awards
The 488 Pista Spider’s target client is a typical diehard Ferrarista who already owns other Ferrari spiders. These are drivers that want to feel all the power and speed the 488 Pista Spider is capable of yet also enjoy drop-top driving and the soundtrack of that unparalleled engine.
Aerodynamic demands guided the work of the Ferrari Design Centre team. The 488 Pista Spider’s forms have been meticulously sculpted to ensure they are more performance-oriented than ever, with huge attention lavished on ensuring that while aerodynamic demands were met, the Maranello marque’s signature styling elements and aesthetic canons were respected.
The interior has a distinctively spare racing feel. The extensive use of lightweight, exclusive technical materials such as carbon-fibre and Alcantara works brilliantly with the meticulous crafting and sophistication that is the signature of all Ferrari cockpits. Contrasting hand-stitching, tread plates and heel rests in triangular pattern aluminium and sculpted door panels are fine examples of this.
The driver zone has been enhanced by two newly-developed all-carbon-fibre instrument clusters around the main instrument panel (optional content). The glove compartment (normally incorporated into the dashboard directly in front of the passenger) has been removed and replaced by handy storage pockets on the rear bench and the doors. The effect is to significantly visually slim down the volume of the under-dash area.
The designers used innovative elements, such as the aerodynamic S-Duct at the front, as an opportunity to visually shorten the car’s nose, creating an original floating wing effect. The black, omega-shaped edging on the front bumpers and the side flicks reference the prominent aerodynamic underbody motif of the 488 GTE..
Most notable on the flanks is the fact that the splitter in the side air intakes of the 488 Spider has been removed. At the front, the aerodynamic profiles that start at the front bumpers run sleekly along the side miniskirts all the way to the side appendages of the rear diffuser.
The concept of the front is echoed in the dolphin-tail rear spoiler which appears suspended to provide an impression lightness and efficiency, while the rear volumes add a sense of power to the tail.
The Ferrari 488 Pista Spider has a racing livery that runs the entire length of the car, starting at the front bumper, then diving into the S-Duct and continuing all the way to the rear spoiler.
THE MOST POWERFUL V8 ENGINE EVER MOUNTED ON A FERRARI ROAD CAR
In terms of its characteristics and performance, the 488 Pista Spider’s engine sets the benchmark not just for new generation turbo engines but all engines, including naturally aspirated ones. This is why it was voted “Engine of the Year” for three years running: 2016, 2017 and 2018. It is also the most powerful V8 ever sported by a road-going Ferrari in terms of both its overall and specific power outputs. It also delivers the highest power increase over the model it was developed from, the 488 Spider.
The car’s technical performance figures are exceptional and set it at the very top of its segment. The Ferrari 488 Pista Spider can unleash 720 cv at 8,000 rpm -50 cv more than the 488 Spider and 115 cv more than the previous special version. Its specific power output has been upped to a best-in-class 185 cv/l. Maximum torque is higher at all engine speeds, peaking at 770 Nm (10 Nm more than the 488 Spider) and is available from 3,000 rpm.
The engine’s sound is unique and unmistakable, as befits a special series car. In fact, the sound level is higher than the 488 Spider in all gears and at all engine speeds. The retractable hard top also makes all of this easier for occupants to appreciate than in the coupé version. The new Inconel exhaust manifolds and optimised exhaust bypass logic contribute to the superior quality and the intensity.
NO CORNERS CUT ON INNOVATION AND PERFORMANCE
In-depth aerodynamics research played a big part in improving the Ferrari 488 Pista Spider’s performance. Working on a concept focused on uncompromising innovation and performance allowed considerable engineering freedom in developing significant solutions.
The already-exceptional aerodynamic efficiency of the 488 Spider has been improved by 20%, with major benefits in terms of absolute speed and lap times on medium-fast tracks as well as sheer fun behind the wheel.
The 488 Pista Spider’s V8 turbo punches out 50 cv more than the car on which it is based, thanks in part to a reduction of almost 15° C in the temperature of the air entering the plenum with respect to the 488 Spider. The development of the thermo-fluid dynamics consequently focused on powertrain cooling, to minimise any impact on pure aerodynamic performance.
To guarantee the kind of performance demanded of the powertrain, the intercooler would have required an increase of over 25% in size compared to that of the 488 Spider. In order to minimise the increase in weight and drag associated with such a large radiating surface, the engineers worked intensively on the car as a whole to improve efficiency, limiting the required surface area increase to just 7%. The main contributing factors to the improved intercooler efficiency were the radical layout choices made at the front of the car.
DRIVING FUN AND MAXIMUM USABILITY
The aim of the Ferrari 488 Pista Spider’s dynamic development was to produce a car that offers high mechanical performance in terms of lap times and standing starts, driving pleasure and accessibility of performance to drivers of all types.
The vehicle dynamics developed for this drop-top V8 special series car thus offer a seamless combination of superb acceleration, braking efficiency, steering precision, grip, stability and handling that produces an unparalleled and genuinely immersive driving experience. This is thanks in part to the Ferrari Dynamic Enhancer (FDE) which makes controlling the lateral dynamics in high performance situations more intuitive, controllable and predictable.
To achieve these objectives, Ferrari’s engineers had to work on several fronts, starting with introducing numerous lightweight solutions as well as evolving both a new generation of the Side Slip Control System (SSC 6.0), improving the efficiency of the braking system and the introduction of new Michelin Sport Cup 2 tyres.
Although the 488 Pista Spider was developed for mostly road use, it was also designed to deliver impressive performance on the track. As a result, the braking system was modified to improve cooling, particularly under extreme use, and also to cut the time it takes to get up to temperature.
The 488 Challenge’s brake servo was adopted to enhance the sporty pedal feel and deliver smooth, consistent braking even in extreme conditions. These interventions, combined with the car’s lighter overall weight, have reduced the 200-0 km/h stopping distance by a metre compared to the 488 Spider.
THE MOST TECHNOLOGICAL TRANSFER FROM THE TRACK TO AN OPEN ROAD CAR
at 8000 rpm
|Type||V8 - 90°twin-turbo – Dry sump|
|Overall displacement||3902 cc|
|Max. torque*||530 kW (720 cv) at 8000 rpm|
|Coppia massima*||770 Nm at 3000 rpm 7th gear|
|Specific power output||185 cv/l|
|Max. engine speed||8000 rpm|
|Front track||1679 mm|
|Rear track||1649 mm|
|Kerb weight**||1485 kg|
|Dry weight**||1380 kg|
|Dry weight/power ratio||1,92 kg/cv|
|Weight distribution||41.5% front – 58.5% rear|
|Boot capacity||170 l|
|Fuel tank capacity||78 l|
|Front||245/35 ZR 20 J9,0|
|Rear||305/30 ZR 20 J11.0|
|Front||398 x 223 x 38 mm|
|Rear||360 x 233 x 32 mm|
|F1 seven-speed dual-clutch transmission|
|E-Diff3, F1-Trac, ABS/High Performance EBD with Ferrari Pre-Fill, FrS SCM-E, FDE, SSC 6.0|
|0-100 km/h||2,85 s|
|0-200 km/h||8,0 s|
|100-0 km/h||29,5 m|
|200-0 km/h||116 m|
|Max. speed||340 km/h|
|Fiorano lap time||1’21,5”|
|*||With 98 RON petrol|
|**||With optional lightweight content|