Ferrari always likes to surprise us with some interesting one-off hybrids. Of course, that can be a hit-or miss affair, with either a glorious masterpiece or an ugly duckling emerging blinking into the sunlight.
Anyone fearing that the Ferrari SP38 would be some kind of Frankenstein’s monster can rest easy; taking a lot from the F40 and a bit from the 308 GTB, the result is an absolute delight.
For one thing, it is immediately and utterly recognisable as a Ferrari. Even when sitting stationary it emanates the spirit of the prancing horse, ready to gallop off down the track at maximum speed. Indeed, there’s a fair few horses in this one, as it uses a twin-turbo V8 engine. You can read more about the SP38 here.
The sweet love child of the F40 and 488 GTB?
That, of course, will come as no surprise to those familiar with the F40. But the SP38 also brings in the technical specifications of the 488 GTB. The really neat trick has been the design of the exterior to deliver the necessary levels of cooling and airflow to the engine. The slatted engine cover that sits where the rear window would be on a normal car offers this and, at the same time, provides a clear nod to the design of the F40.
A key element of the work undertaken by the Ferrari Design Centre has been to load up the weight towards the back, which is apparent only after looking closely at it, perhaps due to the apparent optical illusion provided by the somewhat minimal rear wing. Read more here.
Even so, the wedge-shape of the front, combined with the ultra-narrow headlights, means it does not have the hour-glass figure its narrower middle might otherwise give it. Moreover, the curves reduce the visibility of the air intakes, a characteristic of the 488 GTB and an unavoidable element of the engine cooling system.
To do all this and still be so deliciously pretty is the triumph of this car. Equally at home on the track or the road, it is a one-off hybrid model for every occasion
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