In case you missed the reveal of the 2016 Ferrari 488 GTB, you may want to crawl out from under that rock you’ve been under, dust yourself off, and check it out. Pretty cool, huh? Well, now that you’ve seen Ferrari’s replacement for the 2010 Ferrari 458 Italia, it’s time to have a closer look at the roadster set to replace the 2012 Ferrari 458 Spider. Meet the Ferrari 488 Spider, the turbocharged drop-top that has all the awesome performance figures of the GTB plus the option of driving with nothing but blue skies above!

With the likes of the future 2016 Lamborghini Huracán Roadster and the established 2015 McLaren 650S Spider in its path, the road to topless supercar supremacy will be an uphill battle. But with a 3.9-liter V-8 with tons of power and a 0-to-60-time of three seconds, I think the 488 Spider will certainly have the goods to make it one hell of a battle.

Updated 02/26/2016: The new 488 Spider was presented in London to Ferrari clients and VIP’s including Jamie Campbell Bower, Lucy Watson, Becky Tong and Oliver Proudlock. Of course, while the 488 is no news anymore, it was a perfect opportunity to add a series of new images. Check them out in the "Pictures" tab.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Ferrari 488 Spider.

  • 2016 Ferrari 488 Spider
  • Year:
    2016
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    V8
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    660 @ 8000
  • Torque @ RPM:
    560 @ 3000
  • Displacement:
    4.0 L
  • 0-60 time:
    3 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    205 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    255000 (Est.)
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior
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Not surprisingly, other than the removable top, all of the key design features of the 488 GTB remain intact on the 488 Spider, including the wide-open front air intake, the air ducts in the hood, the scalloped rear air intakes, and the 458 design cues.

Just like the 458 Spider it replaces, the 488 Spider also features two flying buttresses behind the seats.

From the rear, however, you can really see where the 488 Spider differs from the coupe. With the top now removed, the sloping rear glass is gone, leaving only a large piece of sheet metal covering the turbocharged V-8, with six small heat extractors near the rear.

Just like the 458 Spider it replaces, the 488 Spider also features two flying buttresses behind the seats.

All told, our rendering artist nailed it almost 100 percent, missing only the shape of the engine lid and the heat extractors on each side. Overall, the 488 Spider just looks right without its top and it has everything it needs to be a worthy successor to the iconic 458 Spider.

Exterior Dimensions

Length 4568 MM (179.8 in)
Width 1952 MM (76.9 in)
Height 1211 MM (47.7 in)
Wheelbase 2650 MM (104.3 in)
Front track 1679 MM (66.1 in)
Rear track 1647 MM (64.8 in)
Kerb weight 1525 KG (3362 lb)
Dry weight 1420 KG (3131 lb)
Weight distribution 41.5% front – 58.5% rear

Interior

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Interior
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Sans the unlimited headroom, the Ferrari 488 Spider’s interior is virtually identical to the coupe’s. This means customers will get a three-spoke steering wheel with all of the standard Ferrari buttons, a two-tone dashboard, sports seats, that red Ferrari rev counter staring them in the face, and loads of high-end materials.

The retractable roof is carried over from the 458 Spider and remains a two-part, electronically folding top. The rear glass window can be adjusted to one of three positions to optimize windflow when the top is down. Should you need to drive with the top up, the rear glass can be still be lowered to fully enjoy the engine soundtrack. Now that’s a cool feature!

Drivetrain

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior
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What lies under that long piece of sheet metal that replaces the sloped glass of the coupe is what makes the 488 Spider so special. This is the 3.9-liter, turbocharged V-8 that delivers 660 horsepower and 560 pound-feet of torque. It’s this boosted V-8 that affords the 488 GTB a 0-to-60 sprint time of three seconds and a 0-t0-124-mph time of 8.3 seconds. Although the 488 Spider is 110 pounds heavier than the GTB due to its reinforced structure, Ferrari claims the drop-top is as quick as the coupe. Top speed, on the other hand, dropped from 205 to 203 mph.

The 488 Spider is as stiff as the coupe, making it 23 percent more rigid than the 458 Spider it replaces. This is also due to the spaceframe chassis being made of 11 aluminum alloys and other noble metals such as magnesium.

Drivetrain Specifications

Type 90° V8, turbo-charged, dry sump
Total displacement 3902 cc (238.1 cu. in)
Bore and stroke 86.5 x 83 mm (3.4 x 3.3 in)
Maximum power 660 HP @ 8000 RPM
Maximum torque 560 LB-FT @ 3000 RPM in VII gear
Specific output 172 cv/l (2.07 kW/cu. in)
Compression ratio 9.4:1
Maximum speed > 325 km/h (203 mph)
0 – 100 km/h (0 – 62 mph) 3.0 s
0 – 200 km/h (0 – 124 mph) 8.7 s
0 – 400 m (0 – 437 yd) 10.55 s
0 – 1000 m (0 – 1093 yd) 18.9 s
Dry weight/power ratio 2.12 kg/cv (6.35 lb/kW)

Prices

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior
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Prices haven’t been confirmed yet, but the Spider should fetch at least 20 grand more than the GTB, which would put the sticker at around $265,000. For now, let’s just say that if you have to ask, you probably can’t afford it.

Competition

2015 McLaren 650S Spider

2015 McLaren 650S Spider High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Straight from Britain comes this stunning piece of awesome engineering: the McLaren 650S Spider. Sure, it is a little dated by now – partially because McLaren has already launched the 675LT and the Sports Series — but it is still a fine example from a company that refuses to live down to its billing as a small fish in a really big pond.

With a 640-horsepower, 3.8-liter V-8 behind the seats that tortures tires to the tune of 500 pound-feet of torque, the 650S can sprint to 60 mph in just three seconds. It can also hit 124 mph in just 8.6 seconds and top out at 204 mph. Seems like a pretty fair match for the 488 Spider.

At $280,225, the McLaren may end up being a good bit pricier than the 488 Spider.

Find out more about the McLaren 650S Spider here.

2016 Lamborghini Huracán LP 610-4 Spyder

2016 Lamborghini Huracán LP 610-4 Spyder
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Essentially a Huracan coupe from the waist down, but with a new soft-top and a redesigned engine lid, the Huracan Spyder comes to replace the successful Gallardo Spyder. Under its hood lurks the same 5.2-liter V-10 that produces 610 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of twist. Charging from 0 to 62 takes 3.4 seconds and from 0 to 124 takes 10.2 seconds, both figures making the Lambo slower than the 488 Spider. Top speed checks in 201 mph.

Thought the Lambo is the slowest (um, make that least-fast) of the competitors, it is also the least expensive, at $237,250. Are those extra tenths of a second to 60 mph worth an extra $20 to $50k? Well, yes!

Find out more about the Huracan Spyder in our review here.

Conclusion

I fell in love with the Ferrari 488 GTB at first sight, and I typically am not a huge Ferrari fan. And now, looking at this 488 Spider just blew me away. It’s gorgeous without a roof, it has the same performance figures as its coupe sibling, and it’s one of fastest supercars in its segment. What’s more, the turbocharged 3.9-liter V-8 makes it both more efficient and greener than its predecessor. Yeah, I know efficiency isn’t all that important for a car that costs more than $200K, but Ferrari had no choice but to update its entry-level supercar to 21st-century emissions regulations.

And I know replacing the all-motor 4.5-liter with a turbo V-8 left a few enthusiasts feeling rather disappointed, but if you’re among those feeling the urge to take their pitchforks to Maranello, remember that the 488 Spider delivers F12berlinetta-like performance with all the benefits of a mid-ship layout and for less dough. If that’s not a good deal, I don’t know what is!

  • Leave it
    • * Maybe near the $280k price tag of the McLaren 650S
    • * Some enthusiasts may gripe about the turbo
    • * The ongoing argument of "no replacement for displacement"

Updated History

Updated 11/23/2015: Ferrari added a new video showing its latest 488 Spider in action on the roads of Emilia-Romagna in northern Italy. Hit play to watch the new video.

Updated 10/09/2015: Ferrari dropped a new video of its latest 488 Spider, this time focusing on the car’s bodywork. The new 488 Spider was designed around the whole retractable hard top concept and features a spaceframe chassis made of 11 different aluminum alloys combined with other noble metals.

Updated 10/06/2015: Ferrari dropped a new video for its new 488 Spider. This time you’ll get the chance to take a closer look at Prancing Horse’s most high performance engine ever with zero turbo lag and a unique, exhilarating soundtrack. Take a look to see what makes the 488’s new V-8 such a great engine!

Updated 09/30/2015: Ferrari dropped a new video with some behind-the-scene look at the shoot of the 488 Spider promo video. The promo was shot in Norway between fjords, forests, sea and endless light. Enjoy!

Updated 09/21/2015: We’ve added a series of new images we took at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show. Find the new images in the "Pictures" tab.

Updated 09/18/2015: Ferrari dropped promotional video for its new 488 Spider. Enjoy!

Updated 09/15/2015: The new Ferrari 488 Spider made its world debut at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Updated 07/28/2015: Ferrari dropped the official details on the new 488 Spider with about one month before the car’s official debut at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Rendering

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider Exclusive Renderings
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2016 Ferrari 488 Spider Exclusive Renderings
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Press Release

Ferrari announces the launch of the 488 Spider, its most powerful ever mid-rear-engined V8 car to feature the patented retractable hard top along with the highest level of technological innovation and with cutting-edge design.

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior
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Ferrari was the first manufacturer to introduce the RHT (Retractable Hard Top) on a car of this particular architecture. This solution ensures lower weight (-25 kg) and better cockpit comfort compared to the classic fabric soft-top. Just like all previous spider versions of Ferrari’s models, this is a car that is aimed squarely at clients seeking open-air motoring pleasure in a high-performance sports car with an unmistakable Ferrari engine sound.

Every area of the car has been designed to set new technological benchmarks for the sector: from the aluminium spaceframe chassis and bodyshell to the new turbo-charged V8, aerodynamics that reconcile the need for greater downforce with reduced drag along with the specific cabin air flow demands of an open-top car, and vehicle dynamics that render it fast, agile and instantly responsive.

The world premiere of the 488 Spider will be at the Frankfurt International Motor Show in September but can be seen from today finished in the new Blu Corsa livery at www.ferrari.com.

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Interior
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The heart of the 488 Spider

Beneath the engine cover throbs the 3902 cc turbo-charged V8 that debuted just a few months ago on the 488 GTB. Its performance levels are nothing short of extraordinary: a maximum power output of 670 CV combined with maximum torque of 760 Nm at 3000 rpm send the 488 Spider sprinting from 0 to 100 km/h in 3 seconds flat and from 0 to 200 km/h in 8.7 seconds. This is also an exceptionally efficient engine as it is not only 100 CV more powerful than the previous naturally-aspirated V8 but also has lower CO2 emissions.

The turbo V8 has a unique character, delivering increasing levels of power right across the rev range, and completely eliminating the traditional turbo lag with a throttle response time of just 0.8 seconds. This is thanks not merely to components such as the turbos, but also to a sophisticated production process only made possible by Maranello’s leading-edge facilities which are shared with the Scuderia to foster the transfer of racing technologies to the road cars.

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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In line with Ferrari tradition, this model has its own absolutely distinctive soundtrack created using solutions such as exhaust headers with longer, equal-length piping and a flat-plane crankshaft. It was also further enhanced by an in-depth study of harmonics and tonality at different engine speeds. The sound is seductive but never invasive when the top is dropped, with both volume and clarity increasing as the engine instantly responds to the accelerator pedal and revs rise, reinforcing the sensation of massive performance.

Sculpted by the wind

This is also the most aerodynamically efficient Ferrari spider ever built, thanks to a series of complex aero solutions designed to guarantee optimal downforce whilst reducing drag, two normally mutually-exclusive objectives. Maranello’s engineers managed to achieve both goals simultaneously by introducing several innovative devices, including a blown spoiler and an aerodynamic underbody incorporating vortex generators.

The air flow studies also took into account factors relating to in-car comfort. The electric glass rear wind stop can be adjusted to one of three positions to guarantee maximum comfort when the top is lowered. Fully lowering the wind stop allows the occupants to enjoy the engine soundtrack even with the roof raised regardless of the weather or driving conditions.

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior
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Form and function sculpted in aluminium

Designed around the concept of the retractable hard top, the 488 Spider has a spaceframe chassis made of 11 different aluminium alloys combined with other noble metals, such as magnesium, each one used in a highly specific way. This yields the same torsional rigidity and beam stiffness figures as the coupé, improving the chassis’ performance by 23% over that of its predecessor. An extraordinary result, given that the roof is structural, that is only possible thanks to the expertise of the Scaglietti centre of excellence that engineers Ferrari’s aluminium chassis and bodies.

The RHT folds backwards in two overlapping sections to rest flush on the engine in a very compact solution. The mechanism is exceptionally smooth and takes just 14 seconds for the top to fully retract or deploy.

Working with aluminium is important not only in functional terms but also because, by tradition, it demands every detail be treated sculpturally to express the technical excellence of the project through its beauty. Cases in point are the flying buttresses which optimally channel air flows to the engine cover, the ribbing on the engine cover and the air intakes with sculpted mesh grilles which lend that area of the car a sense of incredible dynamism. To achieve this result the Ferrari Styling Centre completely reworked the aesthetics compared to the 488 GTB.

Speed and control across the board

2016 Ferrari 488 Spider High Resolution Exterior
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The introduction of a sophisticated simulator, similar to the one used by the Formula 1 Scuderia, allowed the human factor to influence the car’s design from the earliest stages by giving the engineers instant feedback from the test-drivers long before the first 488 prototype was physically built.

To make its dynamic behaviour even more engaging, the development team honed the car’s mechanical set-up in tandem with its electronic systems which are now fully integrated with the SSC2 Side Slip Angle Control System, resulting in 12% faster acceleration out of corners than the 458 Spider.

Over all, response times are 9% more rapid than the previous Spider without any compromise whatsoever being made in comfort. The car’s design was adapted to efficiently meet the typical the demands of open-top driving and use. In fact, the Spider’s dynamic behaviour is effortless on even the most challenging routes. It is remarkably easy to drive on the limit thanks to flawless handling even on the most demanding of roads.

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