When we drove the Ferrari 458 Speciale back in 2013, we noted it was nothing less than the "finest driving car" you could imagine. All good things must come to an end, however, as the 458 is set to be discontinued in the near future. Set to replace the model is the 488 GTB, which debuts at the Geneva Auto Show with even stronger performance than its predecessor.
Like its predecessor, the new 488 boasts a mid-rear V-8 engine, albeit a much more powerful one. A 3.9-liter turbocharged engine pumps out 660 hp, sending this beast to 62 mph in 3.0 seconds flat, according to Ferrari's estimates. The engine, which also produces 561 lb-ft of torque, is paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox with variable torque management, a system Ferrari says delivers torque "smoothly and powerfully right across the rev range." When tested at Ferrari's Fiorano test track, it lapped 1:23, just a hair quicker than the 458 Speciale's reported time of 1:23.5. Top speed is estimated at 205 mph.
The new Ferrari tops the 458 Speciale, which pumps out 597 ponies and 398 lb-ft from its power-dense, naturally aspirated 4.5-liter V-8. However, Ferrari also estimates a 3.0-second 0-60 time for this car.
According to Ferrari, the new 488 adds aerodynamic improvements that should reduce drag and increase downforce by 50 percent. A double front spoiler and base bleed side intakes do the trick, as does a blown spoiler at the rear. Even the car's underbody is fitted with vortex generators for improved aerodynamics.
Expect even more control in the 488, which comes with an updated version of the automaker's side slip angle control, delivering greater longitudinal acceleration out of corners. Integrated with the car's F-1 Trac traction control system and E-Diff electronic differential, the SSC2 now also controls the active dampers for a more stable ride during difficult maneuvers.
There's no denying that vestiges of the past have been incorporated into the 488 GTB's design. The air intake scallop harkens back to the original 308 GTB, although details like the redesigned taillights are new. Inside the cabin, contrasting red and black colors make a statement. The infotainment interface has been completely revamped, and new satellite control clusters, angled air vents, wrap around seats, and multifunctional steering wheel finish off the look.
We'll see more of the 488 GTB when it debuts at the Geneva Motor Show next month. Until then, get a sneak peek at Ferrari's turbocharged future with these images.