Before I write too much else I should probably admit something: I haven’t driven a Ferrari 488.
That’s quite a big deal when you consider that Maranello’s 458 successor has already notched up a five-star verdict from Matt Prior, along with top spot in our recent Britain’s Best Driver’s Car showdown, and I’m supposed to be telling you about my favourite car of the year.
But even if I hadn’t been cycling up a mountain in Spain while some of my colleagues were having far more fun in Norfolk with said new Fezza (and countless other supercars), I’d be extremely surprised if the 488 had eclipsed my favourite motor of 2015 – Porsche’s astonishing Cayman GT4.
After nearly a decade in this job I’m used to driving Caymans and being jolly impressed, recommending them over any rival at the price and dishing out lots of stars. But there’s always been that nagging frustration that Porsche has never allowed its mid-engine coupé to be as great as it could be, no doubt in fear of creating something even better than the 911.
Well, as far as I’m concerned that’s finally happened because, truly, I had more fun in the GT4 than in the much more powerful 911 GT3 RS. It really doesn’t bother me that the GT4 isn’t even close to being the quickest car of 2015. In fact, I drove the latest turbocharged Carrera S last week and thought that was too rapid to be properly enjoyable on the road - although, to seemingly contradict myself, I’ve always found the Toyota GT86 infuriatingly incapable, with too little grip and not enough go.
The GT4 strikes that fine balance as adroitly as any car I’ve ever been lucky enough to get behind the wheel of. It’s fast enough to thrill and finally feels like a car that's reached its potential, yet you can still drive it hard enough on the road to get the very best from it – which is, by the way, is an awful, awful lot.
The Cayman GT4 is, in my view, as close to motoring nirvana as any car launched this year. Possibly ever. Unless the 488 GTB is even better, in which case ignore me completely.