This month for ‘Cult Classics’, we look at the beloved Ferrari F40 and the history of this iconic car. The buzz surrounding the launch of the F40 was intense and even the hefty price tag didn’t keep enthusiasts away.
It was the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1987, 40 years after Ferrari car production began, when their brand-new creation was unveiled. It was an anniversary celebration that went down a storm and since it was the last car Enzo Ferrari himself had a hand in creating, this limited-edition supercar became even more special.
Earning a place in Ferrari and supercar history
The F40 is a major part of Ferrari history, originally built to rival Porsche’s 959 but never destined for the race track, despite its impressive performance. In fact, this extreme machine shares many characteristics with F1 racing cars and was designed with aerodynamics as the primary focus to make it their fastest yet.
The public fell in love with the jaw-dropping looks of this Pininfarina designed body and production numbers rocketed to 1311 over the next 5 years. Painted in classic rossa corsa red, the F40 was only available in left hand drive configuration and its giant Pirelli tyres gripped the road for tremendous road-holding.
Ferrari F40 performance
Time for the numbers now, what exactly can this ‘not-a-racer’ do out on the track? Well, the F40 offers 471 horsepower and from standing you would be hitting 60mph in just 3.8 seconds. Park up again, put your foot down and in just 8 seconds you’ll be breaking the 100mph mark. Those are some pretty incredible statistics and they didn’t go unnoticed by crowds of fans back in the 80’s.
With its five-speed manual transmission and a twin-turbocharged V8 2.9 liter engine, its tough to think of any other car that feels quite as fast. Unfortunately, safety and environmental regulations dictate that a car like this will never grace the roads again, but this knowledge serves to make the Ferrari F40 even more legendary.
Seeing this cult classic out ‘in the wild’ is a rare treat as only now and again might you spot one luxuriating in the spotlight at a luxury classic car show.