Looks like we'll be seeing the F430 Challenge Stradale
at Frankfurt. Ferrari Chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo basically told reporters as much at the Geneva auto show
. The model that will debut in Frankfurt is an evolution of the F430, which is expected to be more powerful and lighter than the current coupe through the use of F1
engineering and technology. This will follow the pattern Ferrari set with the 360 series, when a Challenge racecar
was built off that platform, then a street version of that racecar sold to the public. We still aren't sure whether the F430 version will wear the Challenge Stradale moniker, but we do suspect that power will be around 525
(up from 489) and that weight should drop by a couple hundred pounds to keep it on par with Lamborghini's recent Gallardo Superleggera
and Porsche's 911 GT3 RS
. Whatever they call it, we will officially go on record as saying it will be our new favorite Ferrari. Until the 599 Barchetta pops up, that is.
[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd]
A couple of other tidbits gleaned from Luca were that Ferrari will not be going public anytime soon. He also said that despite ongoing speculation, Ferrari is not working on a lower priced entry-level model. The rumored Dino
was seen as a way for Ferrari aficionados to go head-to-head with Aston Martin and Porsche at a much lower entry fee than the current cheapest Ferrari, the F430. Ferrari is apparently happy enough to be moving a projected 6,000 units for 2007 and wants to remain exclusive. Luca also pointed out that as new markets are added to the fold, he foresees Asia surpassing the U.S. as the largest buyer of the marque somewhere down the road.