Ferrari has produced many incredible cars in its homeland of Italy, but motoring journalist Rob Griffin picks out five of the very best.
Is there anything in life better than a Ferrari? Can any other car get the pulse racing as fast as one of these wonderful machines?
For more than 60 years these Italian supercars have thrilled motorists and racing fans alike with their stunning appearances and mesmerizing performances.
The first car on the list takes us back to the glitzy 1980s, the decade of the perm and the Filofax. Ferrari has long produced cars that were a perfect fit with the times and back in 1984 it was all about excess and flamboyance. This sleek, two-door machine was the perfect match with its fresh, smooth looks and flat-12 engine. This combination of style and performance enabled it to wrest control of the bedroom wall poster market from Lamborghini’s Countach. The beautiful Testarossa, which had a starring role in the smash hit TV series Miami Vice, was produced for seven years before being replaced by the 512 TR. However, it’s still as eye-catching today as it was 30 years ago. The Testarossa pictured is going to be auctioned at the Goodwood Festival of Speed sale on June 27th.
Another masterpiece from the 1980s, the F40 was designed to celebrate Ferrari’s 40th anniversary and was simply an awesome machine. Almost three decades may have past since its arrival but it retains that breathtaking appeal. The last car launched by Enzo Ferrari before he passed away, the F40 was the epitome of supercar styling and easily identifiable thanks to its rear spoiler. At the height of demand these machines were reportedly changing hands for a cool £1m. Buyers certainly weren’t paying for comfort. The interior was sparse with no flashy trim or electric windows. This was a race car for the road – as proven by the fact it could cover 0-62mph in 4.1s on its way to a top speed of just over 200mph.
The sheer number of awards bestowed upon the striking 458 Italia is simply staggering but the fact is that all the praise and accolades it has received from around the world is 100% justified. Make no mistake, this is a wonderful machine which was even branded “one of the all-time greats” by Top Gear’s Jeremy Clarkson who drooled: "It really is absolutely, unbelievably, mesmerisingly brilliant." Alongside its sharp looks – which make it easily one of the best looking Ferraris ever produced – it has a powerful 4.5 litre V8 engine. This is capable of taking it from 0-62mph in 3.4s and to a top speed of just over 200mph. Just phenomenal.
When Ferrari announced – just before the 2012 Geneva International Motor Show – that its new F12 Berlinetta would be the most powerful high-performance road car the company had ever produced, it guaranteed attention. The subsequent unveiling, which ushered in a new generation of 12 cylinder machines, didn’t disappoint. This tourer is able to hit 62mph from rest in an eye-watering 3.1s and it has a top speed of 211mph. However, this joyous combination of beauty and power doesn’t come cheap and would-be owners would need around £250,000.
Dubbed "the most versatile car ever produced by the Prancing Horse", the FF is the first four-wheel drive production Ferrari. So not only will it eat up the motorway miles with ease, it won’t baulk at being taken out in the snow. This makes the FF special. Despite the supercar credentials that are provided by the Ferrari badge and the V12 engine, it can handle the full variety of weather and road conditions. Not only that but it also has four comfortable, figure hugging seats. So if you’ve got the £230,000-odd needed to purchase one of these remarkable machines, you might just be able to argue it’s a "family car" after all.
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