Ferrari 458 Spider Strips for Romania
Scrap that, there’s no need for it, I can hear the car being started behind the doors and curtain where it is hidden and my mind instantly ignores all survival information. My fingers set up the camera as if they had a mind of their own while I rush to find a good spot to shoot the car and I kneel down to pay my photographic respects just in time to catch the car exiting the cloud of smoke that gave me the impression of a rock concert.
But this is no guitar solo, it’s a V8, the same heart that beating at the center of the coupe. which means that the scared expression on the face of the TV crew female presenter standing next to me is being generated by 4.5 liters of Italian V8 metal, which can also produce something a little bit more useful - 570 hp and 540 Nm of torque.
A bit later I get to chat with the man that had the boldness to move the backpacks forgotten by fellow photographers a few inches forward using the Prancing Horse on the front fascia of the car. He then backed up, offered us a good angle for the shots and exited the car.
Romanian Racing driver Claudiu David told me that the real world differences between the coupe and the spider versions of the 458 are even smaller than the 5 km/h top speed gap the paper shows. He insists that you don’t feel you’re driving the topless version when you throw the car into a corner with the Manettino in the “I want to kill myself” position.
The official speech arrives and we are told that the new adjustable electric wind stop allows you to have a normal conversation as speeds of over 200 km/h. I can’t trust this, I’ll have to put it to the test when the weather allows me to. It’s simple, everything is a matter of respect here: the car should should never give the passenger the occasion to yell at the driver.
The retractable hard top seems to fold itself much, much faster than the 14 seconds official time when you’re watching the process through your camera and trying to get a cool shot and as you get closer, you feel like the interior of the 458 never looked so good - of course, natural light coming in can do wonders.
The 360 Modena Spider, F430 Spider, F430 Scuderia Spider 16M and that grumpy California that wouldn’t allow me to use the seat heating function are all watching us humans fidgeting around their new family member and they’re probably laughing their pistons off when they see how much fuss a simple revving can generate.
The new Spider seems to be an arrogant beast, but this is all our fault: can you blame it for being too cocky after we almost applaud when the folding mechanism is put to a test? This also has a more down to earth translation: the entire lot of 12 units destined for Romania has already been reserved...
Driving the California was a sweet experience, but that model was never meant to please the helmet bearer inside of me and this is where the 458 Spider should come into play. Work and play, of course...
❐ Check out the Ferrari 458 Spider photo gallery