For 22 years Ferrari has made do without a turbo. Not that it’s needed one, considering the Prancing Horse has had no trouble delivering ample amounts of horsepower and thrilling performance on levels rarely challenged by the competition.
To find a turbo Ferrari you’ll have to search your local listings for one of the 1,315 F40 supercars made between 1987 and 1992. The F40 was powered by a 2.9-liter twin-turbocharged V8 developing 471 hp with 16 psi of extra boost. Zero-to-60 came as quickly as 3.8 seconds, which is impressive for the era!
Top Gear‘s Jeremy Clarkson believes the F40 is the best supercar the world has ever seen. Can Ferrari’s new turbo match it?
The fact that Ferrari has introduced a turbo tells us one thing: Even this supercar maker is concerned about emissions. To get the most power out of the least amount of displacement, turbocharging is really the only choice.
One with a new twin-turbo 3.8-litre V8 with a very healthy 552bhp and 556lb ft of torque. That’s a jump of 62bhp over the last version of the California, while torque is up by a whopping 50 per cent. Zero to 62mph is now handled in 3.6 seconds, which trims 0.2 seconds off the old car’s time.
The California doesn’t have the reputation of other Ferraris. It’s always been considered the entry-level car, the one that “real” Ferrari owners scowl at when they see one in L.A. piloted by a young rich kid. This new California T, though, looks like the real deal. The car shares some of the proportions of its bigger front-engined brother, the F12, and should squash any accusations of not being “Ferrari” enough.
Two concerns come to mind when thinking about a turbocharged Ferrari: engine sound and turbo lag. The Italians promise the new V8 will produce a typical Ferrari sound that’s both powerful and engaging, “becoming even more potent as engine speed increases,” while experiencing virtually zero turbo lag.
Assuming you had the means: Are you more of a Ferrari F40 person or a California T person?