• Jul 24, 2008
Click above for high-res gallery of Schumacher and the California

Michael Schumacher may have departed the Formula One grid, but he has most definitely not left Ferrari. The seven-time world champion, widely credited with building Ferrari into the power house it is today, still comes around the paddock at various tracks around the world to give the Prancing Horse's latest creations – whether racing cars or road vehicles – a healthy dose of Schuey-trademarked punishment.

After having been intimately involved with the development of the 430 Scuderia – proclaimed as the fastest road-going Ferrari ever to lap the company's private circuit – Schumacher returned to Fiorano to give his input on Maranello's newest offering, the California. And while his opinion is hardly impartial, he certainly knows what he's talking about and his impressions were glowing. Speaking to the conference of Ferrari dealers assembled at the factory, Schumacher proclaimed that "the Ferrari California is very much a Grand Tourer in terms of its usability and high level of interior comfort, it is still surprisingly sporty and fun to drive under any kind of conditions." You could try arguing with him, but you'd probably end up losing – like most of the drivers that have ever tried to go wheel-to-wheel with the most decorated driver in history. Click below to view the images in our high-resolution gallery, and follow the jump to view the video and press release.


[Source: Ferrari]


PRESS RELEASE

Michael Schumacher completes development testing on Ferrari California

Maranello 23rd July 2008 - Michael Schumacher is currently completing the track and road development stages of the Ferrari California, the new 8-cylinder model due to be officially unveiled at the Paris International Motor Show on October 2nd this year.

The seven times Formula 1 world champion has been involved in the development of the latest Prancing Horse road car since its inception and has worked with Ferrari's team of engineers, technicians and test-drivers on honing the car in general, but more specifically on optimising its performance parameters.

"I have to say that, as with the 430 Scuderia, participating in the project since the very beginning has been really fascinating and great fun," commented Schumacher at the end of a test session at the Fiorano circuit. "Although the cars are very different, they both offer absolutely unique driving pleasure because of the inherently sporty character of all of the cars that come out of Maranello. The 430 Scuderia is, of course, a more extreme model with a focus on absolutely cutting-edge performance. However, although the Ferrari California is very much a Grand Tourer in terms of its usability and high level of interior comfort, it is still surprisingly sporty and fun to drive under any kind of conditions."

Schumacher also recently addressed the Ferrari dealer convention in Maranello and explained the differences between the two 8-cylinders: "They were designed to meet different requirements: the 430 Scuderia is aimed at drivers who want the very essence of a Ferrari and will get it out on the track as often as they can. The Ferrari California, on the other hand, is designed for everyday use and for weekends away whilst still guaranteeing all of the emotional impact that only an authentic Ferrari can deliver."

Michael Schumacher's contribution to the development of the Ferrari California has resulted in a car that delivers extraordinary performance: it can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in under 4 seconds, delivering superb driving pleasure whilst still being exceptionally comfortable and versatile.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 15 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      You people that bitch and moan and complain about how "ugly" every new Ferrari is, are just flat-out PATHETIC!

      Fortunately, you'll never, EVER get the chance to own one (or even drive one). Stick to your Mustangs and Civics, kids. You just don't get it - and never will.
        • 6 Years Ago
        no, we aren't really pathetic at all. i might never own an Aston V8 Vantage, or a Pagani Zonda S, but I think they look spectacular. the fact is while Ferraris have presence in the flesh, objectively they arent the prettiest of cars at the moment. people are right in saying that the california has some dodgy angles, because it clearly does. compare Ferrari's current range of cars to the Daytona, F40 or 355, and its pretty clear which are prettier. You imply that you own a Ferrari which i guess is why you are sticking up for them so strongly. Dont cry just because people dont like your car though, try to be mature in your defence instead.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Video of Michael Schumacher racing FTW.

      Video of Michael Schumacher standing there talking FTbleh.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I can't stand the looks of the California. Not so much that the front-end is bad (it isn't) or the rear (it isn't either) but the design of the side of the car is horrid. I can accept the raised rear section behind the cabin because it has to accomodate the folded top. But the sculpture lines along the body are just awful. It's not a clean look, and it doesn't look as expensive as the car obviously is. I've seen lesser cars styled much better!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Why was there a 15 year old Toyota RAV4 in the background? I'm gald that Ferrari are bringing over items to add to my leisure possibilities.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't understand the sheer hate for this car. I think it's beautiful as any Ferrari out now and I would rather drive this than an Enzo.
        • 6 Years Ago
        When it first came out, I *really* didn't like its shape. For lack of a better term, it looked "lumpy" - especially around the rear quarter panels - and just didn't seem to have much harmony or purpose in its lines. A gorgeous car like the F430 (granted, a lofty comparison) just blew it out of the water.

        But, I have to say it's grown on me somewhat. I think a lot of people are in that boat. I would also assume that this is one of many cars that looks a little funky in photographs (a la new Subaru STi), but looks amazing in person. Give it a couple of years, and the opportunity for people to spot it on the road occasionally, and I'll bet that it easily overcomes that initial lukewarm reception.
      • 6 Years Ago
      LOOKS LIKE A LOTUS
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm getting a Maserati vibe from the front end that sticks out a bit. Anybody else see that?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ferrari nuked the vid, they hate YouTube...
      • 6 Years Ago
      i'm simply so envious of Schumie that i hate him.

      • 6 Years Ago
      California Über Alles!!
      • 6 Years Ago
      LOOKS LIKE A LOTUS
      • 6 Years Ago
      Wow, that Lotus looks great in red. Oh wait, thats a Ferrari. Still looks awesome.
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