Harder version of 488 GTB surfaces on social media; the track-focused variant is a natural rival to the Porsche 911 GT2 RS
Sam Sheehan
20 February 2018

Leaked images of Ferrari's soon-to-land track-focused 488 variant appear to show that it will be named the Pista - which is Italian for track.

The Ferrari 488 Pista has now launched. Click here to read our story

The pictures, shared on American forum website Ferrari Chat, show the car's aggressive aerodynamic changes, including a large front splitter and more prominent rear diffuser. The image of the rear (below) also shows the car's name: 488 Pista.

Ferrari has refrained from commenting on the images or the Pista name. The brand's only official nod to the upcoming car has come in video form. Footage released last week (scrolls down) showed the 458 Speciale successor in action on track at the company's Maranello base.

Set to become the most hardcore, track-focused Ferrari road car yet produced, the top 488 model will use a 700bhp-plus 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.

An earlier leak of technical slides onto Ferrari Photo Page have also suggested the car's engine, which is expected to be 10% lighter in the Pista, will be 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.

The Ferrari 488 Pista has now launched. Click here to read our story

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 Pista 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 interior, 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 Pista.

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.

The Ferrari 488 Pista has now launched. Click here to read our story

Ferrari is yet to verify if the name Pista will be applied to its new model. It was previously rumoured to be called GTO. In the leaked slides, it has been 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 is expected to adopt a new tag that continues the trend set by its spiritual forebears, the 360 Challenge Stradale, 430 Scuderia and 458 Speciale. Although unconfirmed, it means the name Pista seems likely.

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

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The Ferrari 488 Pista has now launched. Click here to read our story

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Comments
27

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

20 February 2018
liquidgold wrote:

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

I once was a passenger for a few miles in an F40...  I still wake up in a shock from time to time, then I realise I am out of the car and now safe.  No hatch back, even a Metro 6R4 group 4 or my mates Nova SRI ever affected me like that...

yeah, the back just ran away from me

20 February 2018
liquidgold wrote:

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

I think the arguement is that some hot hatches might be capable of setting laptime comparable to an F40.

This is always a difficult comparison since as we know some "hot hatches" have been know to do sub 8 minutes laps of the Nurburgring.

Looking at "Fast laps" the trend is that the F40 is about as quick around a track as a F430, despite the F430 being heavier. The difficulty in comparing lap times between an F40 and a modern hot hatch is that there is very few direct comparisons, though on the few entries on fast laps the F40 is quicker than any hot hatch.

Since people started going to the ring and top gear started recording lap times manufacturers have got a lot more into the business. The major factors behind these pretty large improvements in the last 20 years have been:

Tyres, much stickier.

Development drivers who are doing huge amounts of laps on one circuit with telemetry and full comitment in a caged up "development" (ergo chipped, blueprinted) car.

Car set-ups specifically optimised for lap times

Most times for an F40 were done some time ago, the car has large oddly sized tyres, you can't get a modern track day tyre in that size. They were often done by a handy motoring journalist but they probably had a limited number of laps and they are driving an unfamilar highly valuable car owned by someone else.

I'm sure if you put modern track day tyres and wheels on it and then set it up for lap times (suspension is fully adjustable) it would easily hammer any FWD hot hatch.

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.

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