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The Ferrari 458 Italia Is an Agile, Timeless Beauty With Firsts and Lasts

The Ferrari 458 Italia, from the stable of the prancing horse, is a mid-engine V8 marvel. The 458 ran between 2009 and 2015 and was a leap from the F430. This iconic Italian track car needs to stand the test of time. Henry Catchpole of Carfection explains why.
Ferrari 458 Italia 9 photos
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According to Catchpole, the 458 was a car of firsts and lasts for Ferrari. It was the last time to have a naturally aspirated V8 engine under the hood. It was also the first mid-engine V8 that came without a manual transmission. Instead, it came with a dual-clutch automatic gearbox, another first coming from a single clutch gearbox.

With a starting price of £170,000 in the UK when it first went on sale, the Ferrari 458 Italia was a big move from the F430 (before options). I know life is unfair (we all do), but with a price tag like that, Ferrari seemed to be on a trajectory toward developing finer rewards for the affluent.

The 458 Italia can do the 0 to 62 mph (100 kph) in 3.4 seconds, and a lap time around Fiorano is two seconds quicker than an F50. At the back, it has three tailpipes, a signature design, and a nod to the F40. At the front, Ferrari developed adaptive winglets that deform during speed to create more downforce.

The Ferrari 458 came with a different interior, perhaps due to the lack of manual transmission, but Ferrari insists it had a lot of input from racing legend Michael Schumacher.

It also came with a super-quick steering - down from 16.9 to 1 to 11.9 to 1 in terms of the steering ratio compared to the F430.

This Ferrari of many firsts puts out 562 hp from a mid-engine V8 and it weighs 1,380 kg with forged wheels and racing seats.

What a car, it feels so agile and lively,” Catchpole said. “We’ve got that sort of fighter jet-feel. That almost sort of instability, such as the turning of this car.” He added.

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