Harder version of 488 GTB is under development with an anticipated 700bhp, making it a natural rival to Stuttgart's Porsche 911 GT2 RS
Sam Sheehan
13 February 2018

Ferrari has released the first official footage (below) of its hotly anticipated 488 GTO showing the higher-performance V8 supercar in action on track at the brand's Maranello base.

Set to become the most hardcore, track-focused Ferrari road car yet produced, it will use a 700bhp engine derived from the 488 Challenge race car – two of which are also featured in the video – and feature new bodywork focused on maximising downforce.

Before the new footage, leaked images posted onto Ferrari Photo Page appeared to show internal slides of the car, where there's mention of a 10% lighter engine that is based on that used in the racer, making it the marque's most powerful production V8 yet produced.

Most likely, the 488's mid-mounted twin-turbocharged 3.9-litre V8 engine will be boosted with increased turbo pressure and internal modifications to produce its anticipated 700bhp, with torque also increasing substantially on the standard car’s 561lb ft.

A leaked photo (see gallery) showed a more aggressive front splitter will be fitted to the car, while the official footage offers glimpses of a more prominent rear diffuser and black section between the car's taillights.

The car, a hotter version of the 488 that will go toe to toe with the Porsche 911 GT2 RS, will essentially be a replacement to the discontinued 458 Speciale, which is widely regarded as the best driver-focused Ferrari to date. It has been spotted testing outside Ferrari's Maranello base on numerous occasions and is tentatively tipped for arrival at this year's Geneva motor show

Expect the 488 GTO to feature an extensive list of carbonfibre parts for the body and interior. The bonnet, bumpers and rear spoiler will be made from the material, as will large sections of the cabin, including the dashboard.

The standard 488 produces 325kg of downforce at 155mph, but the 911 GT2 RS produces up to 340kg. Ferrari's aerodynamicists, who have access to the brand's Formula 1 wind tunnel, will be keen to rival that figure. Expect large intakes for the more potent powertrain, a bigger front lip and more prominent rear diffuser. Leaked slides suggest a 20% improvement in overall aerodynamic efficiency for the 488 GTO.

There's also mention of 20in wheels made from carbonfibre, saving 40% in weight compared with the standard 488 rims. They'll come wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 rubber.

Ferrari tradition suggests engineers will also remove non-essential parts from the interior and sound deadening from the car's engine bay, as well as fitting other lightweight parts such as thinner glass for the windscreen and side windows, and lighter ceramic brakes - like with the 458 Speciale.

Additionally, the brand's technical boffins will give the car its own unique settings for the seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox and Slide Slip Control management, with the latter likely to enable even greater angles of yaw before fully intervening.

Ferrari is rumoured to be reserving the GTO name for the car, but the final moniker has yet to be officially revealed (in the leaked slides, it's referred to as a 'New V8 Sport Special Series'). GTO has only been applied to three Ferraris before – the first two of which, the 250 GTO and 288 GTO, were racing machines. The latest, the 599 GTO, was a road-legal version of the track-only 599XX, leading many to claim it wasn't worthy of its racing title.

For this reason, the harder but still road-legal 488 could adopt a new tag that continues the trend set by its spiritual forebears, the 360 Challenge Stradale, 430 Scuderia and 458 Speciale.

Prices will increase significantly over the 488 GTB. An entry-level figure of more than £215,000 is possible.

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Comments
22

25 April 2017
More hardcore than an F40? Really? That car terrified people back in the day.

26 April 2017
...is pointless. Already sold out. You'll need £500000 to get your hands on one now.
To be fair, probably no different for the GT2-RS.

23 January 2018

Ryan,

Hearing you loud and clear. Love Ferrari, admit to being a Porsche Fanboy, but if McLaren were to announce they would build every one of their cars to meet customer orders, then I would switch allegiance. I wonder if any of the mainstream manufacturers will take that plunge?

12 December 2017
scrap wrote:

More hardcore than an F40? Really? That car terrified people back in the day.

F40,awesome in its Day, but now....?, er em no,just no , even some of the new Hothatches would give it a hard time.

Peter Cavellini.

12 December 2017
No, they wouldn't.

And that isn't the point being made is it? The F40 was intimidatingly ferocious, could crack 200mph, and 100mph in 7.8.

Keep your hatch.

13 December 2017
Peter Cavellini wrote:

scrap wrote:

More hardcore than an F40? Really? That car terrified people back in the day.

F40,awesome in its Day, but now....?, er em no,just no , even some of the new Hothatches would give it a hard time.

Peter, your comments are sheer buffoonery. The F40 remains a brutally quick car, with power delivery that can be terrifying in 3rd and 4th gears, in a straight line, in the dry. Second is just a matter of gritting your teeth and clinging on. 

 

Any comparison with a modern hot hatch is woefully wide of the mark. The F40 is incredibly light, devoid of any driver aids and in spite of a manufacturer claimed 478bhp, develops well over 500. 

When de-catted and breathing freely (read Tubi exhaust) it pops, bangs and creates fire in an extraordinary way - one that makes the computer controlled farty noises of the Focus RS seem as pointlessly artificial as they really are.  No comparison. 

LG

23 January 2018

Peter,

Whilst I understand your post in respect to performance, you and I both acknowledge the importance of drama and 'specialness' (is that a word?). I was fortunate enough to experience an F40 here in SW Florida recently at a Cars and Coffee meeting. I did not drive it, or get to sit in it, but I did get to spend some time talking to it's owner and hearing/watching it start, stop arrive and depart. It was pure theatre if you are a car guy. Are you willing to bend on your initial comments?

26 January 2018
Peter Cavellini wrote:

scrap wrote:

More hardcore than an F40? Really? That car terrified people back in the day.

F40,awesome in its Day, but now....?, er em no,just no , even some of the new Hothatches would give it a hard time.

Not unless they've been seriously modified. Back in 2010/12 I had an expensive 18 months ownership of an F360. I attended a Ferrari owners event at Circuit Paul Ricard with it and was Lucky enough to get a brief but memorable passenger ride in an F40. Whilst the fastest of the modern 4wd hatches may jump it off the line, that'd be it. Performance from 80 - 180 kph is fearsome.

26 April 2017
"The 488 GTO’s name follows a trend first set by the 288 GTO, which arrived in 1984 as a harder version of the 308 GTB." I might be completely wrong but the 288 GTO, while being based on the 308, was a standalone model, it was Ferrari's first modern day hypercar and was originally conceived to compete in the Group B class of sportscar racing (like Porsche's 959). It was not a 308 derivative. The 488 GTO seems to be following more in the footsteps of the 599 GTO which was a harder version of the standard 599 but was not designed for racing.

12 December 2017

All that just to get on terms with a stretched Beetle. Ferrari should just give up. Use the badge for hot special edition Fiats or something.

-------- 

I'm The Ωmega Man, always talking to myself

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