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Ferrari Spied Testing Turbocharged 458, Here Are the Details

Purists will have a hard time with this, but Ferrari’s new turbo era is here to stay. Now that the California T has re-opened Maranello’s forced induction gates, the Ferrari 458 is next.
Ferrari 458 Turbo spyshots 8 photos
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As it turns out, the massaged 605 hp V8 motivating the 458 Speciale is the swan song of the Prancing Horse’s naturally aspirated V8. While V12s will continue with natural aspiration, at least for a while, the vee eights shall be forced fed from now on.

Returning to the 458, this falls in line with Ferrari’s plan - a new model is supposed to have a lifespan of four years, with a revamp arriving subsequently. Actually, the 458 has been with us for a ad longer than that, but we really can’t complain.

While the California T packs a 3.8-liter twin-turbo unit, it is believed the powerplant in the revamped 458 will be larger and will rev higher. Since the 458 Speciale already took things past 600 hp, expect the turbo 458 to take things to a McLaren 650S-matching 650 hp level. It could even climb higher than that, so a 670 hp output shouldn’t come as a surprise.

As for the character transformation brought by the turbines, engineers in Maranello are working to bring the new engine as close to the linear power delivery and high rev limit of a NA engine as possible.

While the California T limits low-rev torque in the low gears to determine drivers to push the car higher as they would with a NA engine, this is achieved with small turbochargers. Nonetheless, the California T’s 7,500 rpm redline is not enough for the 458 facelift, which means the size of the turbines will have to be increased. We’ll just have to wait and see how the Cavallino Rampante wizards fight turbo lag.

Note that while the California’s engine features a wet sump, the... heavy performance duty of the 458 will require dry sump lubrication.

While Ferrari isn’t ready to switch the 458 from aluminum to carbon fiber, we will see a few of design and aerodynamic changes. Hiding under that heavy camo, there should be new air intakes on the sides of the car - the intercoolers need to be fed, while the entire engine bay requires extra cooling. One too many of the early 458s liked to demonstrate the meaning of spontaneous combustion and Ferrari definitely doesn’t want to let that happen again.

As far as the performance goes, not only will the power and especially the torque see a boost, but the more compact and slightly lighter engine will put the car on a diet.

As we discovered while reviweing the 458 Italia, 458 Spider and even the 458 Speciale, the mid-engined supercar is too tail-happy for its own good on certain occasions. The turbo-torque only adds to this problem, so we’re eager to see how Ferrari deals with the matter.

As for the designations, it could be called the 458 T (just like the Cali), the 458 M or it may even receive a name change altogether. Maranello does have a past record related to this, with the 308/328/348 of the 70s and 80s being the best example.

Many reports place the turbocharged 458’s debut at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, so our Manettino-flipping fingers are crossed.


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