Ferrari 488 Pista announced

Ferrari 488 Pista

Consequently, the net mechanical force produced by the 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8 is rated at 711bhp and 770Nm - making this spec the most powerful V8 in Ferrari's history. The Ferrari 488 Pista is a hard-core performance version of the 488 and is a fast successor of the 458 Speciale and also the the other V8-engined offerings like the 360 Challenge Stradale, 430 Scuderia and 458 Speciale.

Starting with the one everybody talks about at the moment, the 0-62 miles per hour (0-100 km/h) acceleration time, the Pista only needs 2.85 seconds to clear it. Total speed would be 340km/hand.

FERRARI IS one of the most secretive of auto companies of all, but that hasn't stopped pictures of the new 488 Pista finding their way into the open. The racing stripe continues over the curved roofline and exits off the carbon-fiber rear spoiler like a ramp.

Ferrari has been as creative as usual with its names - with Pista simply translating as "track". Given quoted top speeds of 340km/h for the GT2 RS and Pista, and 341 for the 720S, we'll call it a three-way performance tie.

Ferrari says the 488 Pista weighs just 1,280 kg (dry), which is 90 kg lighter compared to the 488 GTB, with the engine being one of the contributors to the lower figure. All in, these changes generate 20 percent more downforce than the standard 488.

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The 488 Pista (Italian for track) is a considerably leaner machine than its GTB counterpart with a 90kg savings showing in its 1280kg kerb weight.

As for aerodynamics, Ferrari has incorporated a front S-duct and diffusers, another GTE vehicle feature.

Ferrari also adds the latest version of its Side-Slip Control system, featuring the electronic differential and magnetorheological suspension (variable dampers using a magnetic field). A set of specially-developed Michelin tyres are also part of the package. The final result of all these interventions is an impressive 20 per cent increase in downforce.

The Ferrari 488 Pista will be shown in the metal once the Geneva Motor Show opens this March. Trick software (including a function that adjusts the pressure of the brake calipers) helps drivers make the most of the Pista's power regardless of their skill level behind the wheel. It's too early for pricing, but expect a premium on the 488 GTB's R5.12-million base price.

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