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Most advanced Spider ever: Ferrari’s SF90 supercar drops its top

Published Nov 13, 2020


MARANELLO - More than a year after Ferrari unleashed its most technologically advanced road car ever, the SF90 Stradale, comes the drop-top version.

The new SF90 Spider has all the basic technical ingredients as its tin-top sibling, just with the added joy of wind-in-the-hair cruising. And yes, it is heavier to the tune of 100kg, and while you might feel that in the corners, the official performance times have not been affected, with Ferrari insisting that both will get you from 0-100km/h in 2.5 seconds. It is three tenths of a second slower to 200 though, but you’re still getting there in just seven seconds.

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While many open-air cars are going the soft top route these days, Ferrari has stuck to its guns with an evolution of its RHT retractable hard top system, which it retained due to its superior noise insulation and the fact that it doesn’t deform at high speeds.

The compact and lightweight roof can be raised or lowered in 14 seconds, Ferrari says, and it only takes up 100 litres of boot space. The fact that it’s made from aluminium also makes it 40kg lighter than a conventional hard top.

As per the SF90 Stradale, the Spider is powered by Ferrari’s first plug-in hybrid powertrain, which pairs a turbocharged V8 engine to three electric motors for a total system output of 736kW.

It’s also Ferrari’s first all-wheel drive car, with two electric motors mounted on the front axle and a third one positioned between the petrol engine and the eight-speed dual-clutch transmission, which together drive the rear wheels. In fact, technically it’s also the first front-wheel drive Ferrari too as the electric motors mounted up front can operate independently, and propel the car for up to 25km when the 7.9 kWh Li-ion battery has a full charge - although you’ll have to stick to 135km/h or below to keep the car in EV mode.

For the record, the V8 turbo engine produces 574kW at 7500rpm and 800Nm at 6000rpm, while the three electric motors can together produce up to 162kW. A sophisticated control system seamlessly manages the flow of power between the four power units, and all the driver needs to do is select one of four drive modes: eDrive (fully electric), Hybrid (balance between power and efficiency) and Qualify (which unleashes the beast in all its glory).

Although the hybrid system with its trio of heavy batteries adds 270kg to the car’s kerb weight, engineers have mitigated this to a degree with an all-new chassis and body structure that makes generous use of lightweight materials such as carbon fibre.

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Ferrari SF90 with Assetto Fiorano pacakge.

As with the SF90 Stradale, buyers can opt for a ‘Assetto Fiorano’ specification pack that includes additional lightweight components that shave off 21kg, as well as Multimatic shock absorbers, a high-downforce carbon fibre rear spoiler and Michelin Pilot Cup2 tyres. Oh, and racing stripes are part of the deal here too.

IOL Motoring

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