Ferrari is known for producing fast, high performing supercars. The car brand started making rear mid-engine, rear-wheel drive V8 supercars in 1975 with the 308 GTB. In 2009, Ferrari started production on the 458 Italia, the latest rear mid-engine, rear-wheel drive supercar from the Italian car brand. The 458 Italia is a unique Ferrari. It is one of the few cars that redlines at 9000 rpm and it is the first rear mid-engine Ferrari with direct fuel injection.

I first saw the Ferrari 458 Italia outside a restaurant in Houston. This was right after I saw Top Gear’s review of the 458. I love the styling of this car. It also makes appearances at Houston Car and Coffee events. Two 458 Italias were drivable at the 2011 Houston Classy Chassis: Concours d’Elegance for a minimum fee of $40. My first thought is that the 458 looked more aggressive than its predecessors, 360 and F430. The deformed winglets on the front grill lower at lower speed to reduce drag. The body is designed for aerodynamic efficiency and producing downforce. The exterior design of the 458 not only improve performance of the car, but the design also makes the 458 stunning to look at.

The Ferrari 458 Italia is powered by a 4.5L V8, paired with a seven-speed dual clutch transmission, that produces 570 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque. It goes from 0 to 60 mph in under 3.4 seconds. It reaches a top speed exceeding 202 mph. Prices for the Ferrari 458 Italia start at $225,000. This is the one of the least expensive cars of the current Ferrari model range and it is also on of the fastest current Ferrari. The price is on par for a car that exceeds 200 mph and a 0-60 time of under 3.5 seconds.

Jeremy Clarkson reviewed the Ferrari 458 Italia during Top Gear Series 15, Episode 6. Clarkson raced the 458 against a Ferrari F430 in a drag race and won. James May drove the 458 Italia during the 2010 USA Road Trip Special. The 458 Italia will be the vehicle for the autobot Mirage in Transformers: Dark of the Moon. The Ferrari 458 Italia is playable in Gran Turismo 5, Forza Motorsport 3, Ferrari: The Race Experience, GT Racing: Motor Academy, Test Drive Unlimited 2, Asphalt 6: Adrenaline, Car Town, and Transformers: Dark of the Moon Video Game.

Final Thought: This is an incredible car. The price is average for a car that can exceed speeds of over 200 mph. Most cars that have the performance similar to the 458 Italia start at prices around $225,000. Its rival, the Lamborghini Gallardo, starts around $210,000 dollars. Compared to the LFA, which has the same performance as the 458 Italia and costs $375,000, the 458 Italia is a bargain. The 458 Italia continues the tradition of stylish high performing Ferraris.


Photo taken from a camera phone

Originally written on June 23, 2011

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