The Ferrari F8 Spider Is Almost As Quick As The 488 Spider Pista

Although somewhat overshadowed by the reveal of the last front-engined V-12 Ferrari convertible - the 812 GTS - the new Ferrari F8 Spider still enchanted the right people. Largely favorable reactions to its exterior appearance demonstrate that Ferrari Design Studio knows a thing or two about design even without the help from Pininfarina. Interestingly enough, neither the 812 nor the F8 Spider wore the trademark Rosso Corsa color at their reveal, but they have still picked up a lot of publicity.

The F8 Spider, despite gorgeous, isn’t exactly a lot different compared to the F8 Tributo. The only notable change is, of course, the removable hardtop that stows under the rear tonneau cover in 14 seconds. It needs the same time to fold like the one in the Ferrari 812 GTS.

New Ferrari F8 Spider Weighs Just 20 kg More Than the 488 Pista Spider

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The 488 Pista Spider is one of the most extreme and sharpest vehicles ever conceived in Maranello.

Apart from sharing its engine with the new F8 Spider, it would seem that Ferrari wanted to capture the essence of the Pista Spider in the new F8 Spider as well.

After all, with an engine good for 710 horsepower, I don’t see how anyone that isn’t Leclerc could feel 20 kilograms of added weight on his car. Don’t get me wrong, the 488 Pista Spider is still more hardcore. After all, Ferrari said that “the new Spider offers the highest level yet of technological transfer from the track to a road-legal drop-top car.”

While the F8 Spider feels insane, it is just a tad under the insanity level of the 488 Pista Spider. Considering that the kerb weight for the Ferrari 488 Pista Spider is 3,273.8 pounds, then, the kerb weight of the Ferrari F8 Spider has to be at 3,318 pounds.

How Ferrari Kept The Weight To A Minimum

2020 Ferrari F8 Spider - Quirks and Facts Exterior
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The Ferrari 488 Pista’s engine that landed in the middle of the F8 Tributo and the F8 Spider has a few curious improvements.

Yes, it has more restricted exhausts thanks to emission regulations in the latest F8 Spider, but Ferrari made a few more changes to it.

The re-engineered internals of the 3.9-liter, twin-turbocharged V-8 also include lighter hardware. Some of the features Ferrari reimagined include:

  • new crankshaft
  • new flywheel
  • new exhaust manifolds (made using Inconel alloys)
  • new connecting rods

These measures lowered the weight of the engine by some 40 pounds. That is, frankly, astonishing. At the same time, the engine in the F8 Spider releases fewer pollutants, weighs less than before, probably uses less fuel than ever, and provides the F8 Spider with levels of thrust that only a few could ever achieve.

These are the specs:

Type: V8 - 90° - turbo - dry sump
Overall displacement: 3902 cc
Max. power output: 710 horsepower @ 8000 rpm
Max. torque: 568 pound-feet @ 3250 rpm
Specific power output: 185 hp/l
Max. revs: 8000 rpm
Compression ratio: 9.6:1

These are its performance ratings:

0-62 mph: 2.90 s
0-124 mph: 8.2 s
Max. speed: 211 mph

Variable Torque Management

2020 Ferrari F8 Spider - Quirks and Facts Exterior
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Hoping to offer its customers much the same thrilling experience as they had with the older Ferraris with naturally-aspirated engines, the Maranello-based company created a unique system called Variable Torque Management.

This system, as part of the seven-speed transmission, limits the torque available in some gears thus affecting the torque curve, and fundamentally, mimics the linear torque delivery behavior of the naturally-aspirated engine.

Considering that the engine in the F8 Spider is an updated version of the engine from the 488 GTB, I can show you just how those torque curves look.

2020 Ferrari F8 Spider - Quirks and Facts
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You should look at the right graph. There you can see a black line that represents the torque curve of the 458 Italia’s V-8, naturally-aspirated engine. The red lines represent the torque curves of the twin-turbocharged, V-8 engine in the 488 GTB for each gear. Obviously, Variable Torque Management limits the torque delivery. In the case of the 488 GTB, Variable Torque Management allows for 500 or so torques in lower gears, allowing all 560 pound-feet only in the seventh gear. However, look just how much it does limit the torque delivery at lower rpm. It only allows for all available torque in top gear. If it did allow all the torque in all gears, the 488 GTB would be undrivable because of the immense wheel spin. In short, it would be too dangerous. The same system limits the power in the Ferrari F8 Spider. I would say that the torque graph is similar to the one on the 488 GTB, as Ferrari manages torque delivery by lowering the turbocharger boost.

First Deliveries Expected at the End of 2020/Start of 2021

2020 Ferrari F8 Spider - Quirks and Facts Exterior
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Ferrari stays tight-lipped about the deliveries of the new F8 Spider.

However, lead by previous experiences, we can reasonably expect deliveries to start at the end of 2020/beginning of 2021.

Sure, some high-priority clients could get access to the car even sooner. You will have to wait for the reviews and official test drive summaries half a year at least as well. Nevertheless, those that simply need to have the Ferrari F8 Spider should, at least, annoy a bit Ferrari dealerships sales representatives to get them on the allocation lists ASAP. That is a big deal because Ferrari does one thing really good - it always produces fewer cars than the demand.

Further reading

2020 Ferrari F8 Spider - Quirks and Facts Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2020 Ferrari F8 Spider.

The 2020 Ferrari F8 Tributo Joins Ferrari's Lineup as a Successor to the 488
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Read our full review on the 2020 Ferrari F8 Tributo.

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider
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Read our full review on the 2016 Ferrari 488 Spider.

Ferrari Celebrates its 50th Drop-Top Model With The 488 Pista Spider Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2019 Ferrari 488 Pista Spider.

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