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As if The Geneva Motor Show doesn’t have enough to make eyes pop out of the head and jaws drop to the floor, then the official debut of the new version of the Ferrari California will. More horsepower + lighter weight = faster Ferrari.

Oh yes indeedy!

Technically the weight has been reduced by 30kg and power output increased by 30CV – all of which means that Ferrari California’s GDI V8 engine now delivers 490 hp with maximum torque of 505 Nm at 5,000 rpm, thanks to new exhaust manifolds and engine mapping.

And nothing has really been taken away. It’s all thanks to cutting-edge aluminium fabrication techniques and construction technologies used by the Scaglietti Centre of Excellence in the chassis manufacture that’s led to the 30kg reduction without impinging on the structural rigidity and performance in any way, shape or form.

And these enhancements mean that the Ferrari’s California’s performance has drastically improved, reducing its 0-100 km/acceleration time to 3.8 seconds. More sport for your money without taking anything away from performance and exceptional versatility in this little gem with its retractable hard top and 2+ seating.

Let’s be honest; you’re not going to buy a Ferrari for the school run, are you? - Unless it’s a particularly posh school and turning up in a Nissan Sunny would be frowned upon! You’re looking for the experience of a lifetime; a more dynamic, but not too extreme, driving experience.

So, with this in mind, Ferrari have developed what they call an optional “Handling Speciale” package which introduces modifications to the suspension set-up that minimise body roll and make the car even more responsive to driver inputs.

The Handling Speciale package includes Magnetorheological dampers (of course!) controlled by an even faster ECU (-50% response time) running patented Ferrari software, as well as stiffer springs for more precise body control combined with a comfortable ride. Lastly, the California smaller steering wheel angles (thanks to a new steering box with a 10 per cent quicker steering ratio) means faster turn-in.

All these new features combine to accentuate the California’s sporty prowess.

And it wouldn’t be a ‘launch’ without the obligatory display of a wide choice of colours including two-tone finishes, three-layer paint technology and modern ‘re-interpretations’ of classic colour schemes, all developed by the Ferrari Styling Centre, which increase the  exclusive personalisation possibilities even further. As long as there’s a bright red one I should imagine most buyers won’t care too much about the other choices!

Oh, and the Ferrari California also benefits from the free seven-year standard maintenance programme.

Ferrari Californias are in production already, and guess who is going to get them first?


Let’s go and see what all the fuss is about in Geneva.