Last Friday I drove the Ferrari 458 Speciale on road and track in Italy, and only this Tuesday I had another good go in the new Porsche 911 GT3, again on road and track.

Now I can't help but ask a question - which, out of arguably the two most exciting driver's cars of the moment, is the better car?

So let's knock off some of the detail stuff before drilling into the more subjective differences.

1 Which one is quickest? The Ferrari, but only just. If anything the GT3 feels stronger low down, but right at the very top the Speciale pulls hardest, and therefore accelerates that little bit more ferociously (which seems ridiculous to conclude when one considers just how manic the GT3 feels over the last 2000rpm).

2 Which one handles best? The Ferrari, I think. Why? Because its front end is that much more pinned (despite its the new four wheel steering system, the latest GT3 still understeers a touch in quicker corners), the Ferrari's rear end is every bit as well balanced, it doesn't have quite as much traction as the Porsche, but it does have a natty little trick up its sleeve called side slip control. Overall it's fag paper stuff separating them in isolation - mainly because they are so different from one another in handling character - but I'd still be prepared to give the nod to the Ferrari. Probably.

3 Which one sounds the best? That's subjective, but for me it's the GT3. Oh hang on though, the Speciale sounds pretty hair raising between 7500-9050rpm. So OK, let's call that one a draw.

4 Brakes? Until I drove the Speciale I would have put money on the GT3 having the best brakes of any road car on sale. But then I drove the Speciale and...I think for the time being, until we put them back to back, this one's probably a draw as well.

5 Cabin quality? The Ferrari, no question. The GT3 feels business-like and reasonably tasty inside, albeit in a teutonic kind of way. But the Speciale feels like a million dollars when you clamber aboard, and even though there are rather too many things going on for my liking on the steering wheel, the Speciale's interior rocks.

6 Visual impact? Again it's subjective, but for me the GT3 is pretty much the most perfect looking sports car that there has ever been, Amen. The relationship between the rear tyres and the rear wheel arches makes me go weak at the knees, if I'm honest - whereas the Speciale, again for me personally, doesn't look as elegant, or pretty, as the standard 458 Italia.

Conclusion: without putting them back to back on the same piece of road, and the same piece of track, it's absolutely impossible to declare one or t'other as being the better of the two. However, the fact that the Porsche costs £108k less than the Ferrari does seem fairly relevant given that the debate would be perfectly valid, even if they cost the same amount of money.

Whatever the outcome, if and when we do finally pit these two new icons of licence losing together, there can be no doubt that the Porsche that represents the best value. Indeed, the latest GT3 could even be one of the best value cars on sale right now. And no, I can't believe I just wrote that about a car that costs £100,000 either.