Since the 308 debuted in 1975, Ferrari’s mid-engine V8 line has remained the brand’s best selling vehicle. Each new generation would get faster, easier to use and usually more reliable but there were few that were truly revolutionary. The Ferrari 458 represents probably the single largest leap forward for the mid-engine V8 Ferrari since the line’s introduction and has landed near the top of everyone's list as a future classic. First shown at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show, the 458 ushered in a new, smoother design language that progressively found its way into all of Ferrari’s models and featured lots of aerodynamic trickery to help the car cut through the air. Powered by a heavily updated version of Ferrari’s naturally aspirated F136 V8, the 458 produced 562 horsepower and could rev to a staggering 9,000 rpm. Ferrari wasn’t talking about it at the time but the 458 ended up being the brand’s final naturally aspirated mid-engine normal production road car. This engine was backed up by a stout Getrag 7-speed dual clutch transmission that offered seamless shifting and was far more pleasant in daily use than the brand’s prior F1 transmission. The 458 continued the trend as a massive sales success for the brand and has proved to be one of the most reliable cars to ever leave Maranello.
This 2014 458 Spider is finished in Bianco Avus and shows 16,220 miles at the time of cataloging. The 458 Spider is the first mid-engine car from Ferrari to feature a folding hard top- made of aluminum, it is claimed that this setup weighs 55 lbs less than the cloth top found in the F430 and requires just 14 seconds to raise or lower. One of the great things about this top is the ability to just lower the rear window while the top is still in place- allowing you to hear the car’s outstanding exhaust note behind you-even when the weather isn’t right for top down motoring. A set of 20” 5-spoke forged wheels reside on the car and hide the large yellow brake calipers behind them.
Even with all of the advancements in powertrain, suspension and design, perhaps the largest change was carried out on the 458’s interior. Designed with Michael Schumacher’s input, the interior of a 458 is a very driver focused affair with nearly every control you need, affixed to the steering wheel. A pair of color displays are integrated into the gauge cluster that will show speed, navigation, or give real time information about the state of the car’s mechanical systems and a large tachometer in the center commands the driver’s attention. On this car, the interior is finished in black leather with Daytona seat trimming and white contrast stitching throughout the cabin. One of the most sought after options on the 458 is the Carbon Driving Zone- a steering wheel with carbon fiber on the top and bottom, but most importantly, LED shift lights along the top edge of the wheel that come on progressively as you get closer to redline.
Powering the car is the aforementioned F136 flat plane crankshaft V8- thanks to a special direct fuel injection system and variable intake runners, this motor is far more tractable around town than many prior Ferrari V8s and produces 80% of its 398 lb-ft of torque at just 3,250 rpm. That being said, maximum power is still right at the 9,000 rpm redline. This gives the car the ability to run from 0-62 mph in just 3.4 seconds and on to a top speed of over 200 mph. When you look at the selection of buttons and switches on the steering wheel, the most inconspicuous of them all is a small black button with a shock absorber graphic on it. This may be one of the most important features on the whole car- thanks to a set of advanced magnetic shock absorbers, at the push of a button, the car can go from stiff track focused shock tuning, to smooth touring suspension that would put many non-supercars to shame.
What has made the 458 so beloved over time is not just its looks or performance but the flexibility it offers its owners. No longer do you need to make sacrifices to drive your Ferrari, the 458 is a car you can use every day or take on a cross country road trip, and not need to worry about making it to your final destination. This example, with its desirable white over black color combination and a nice list of options, will provide years of enjoyment to its new owner and show just why these cars are already being considered modern classics.