Click above for a high-res gallery of the Ferrari California
The gang in Maranello is continuing to dribble out more imagery of the new Ferrari California roadster, now with the car now making its first appearance with its hard top up. This blue GT can be seen in the gallery below with the top up, down and halfway in between. Thankfully, in spite of the 2+ designation (whatever that means) the car still maintains two-seater proportions, so it doesn't have a ridiculously long rear deck. There has been plenty of discussion in the comments about the virtues of the California's design details, but the overall proportions are definitely classic GT the folding hard top manages not to screw that up.
Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo recently had his first crack at driving the new car at the company's Fiorano test track and unsurprisingly came away feeling quite effusive about the newcomer. In the bosses words, "The California is, like all of our models, the epitome of cutting-edge innovation." The new hard top can apparently change state in a mere 14 seconds. Hopefully it will also prove to be more reliable than some other such examples. It's going to be a long summer of teasing from Ferrari before the California makes its debut at the Paris Motor Show in October. In the meantime, Ferrari's latest press release is after the jump.
New photographs of the Ferrari California with roof
FERRARI PRESIDENT LUCA DI MONTEZEMOLO TEST-DRIVES THE NEW CALIFORNIA:
"I'M THRILLED. IT'S A GREAT FERRARI THAT DELIVERS UNIQUE
Maranello, 29th May 2008 – The new Ferrari California, 2+ convertible, had a very special "test-driver" behind its
wheel the last few days as the Prancing Horse President Luca di Montezemolo put it through its paces over several laps at the Fiorano circuit.
"I am very satisfied indeed with the work that the women and men of Ferrari have done," declared Luca di
Montezemolo. "The California is an extraordinary car and I was delighted with the performance, comfort and driving pleasure it delivered. The California is, like all of our models, the epitome of cutting-edge innovation. Its
gearbox, suspensions and chassis are the most advanced possible.
This is the first dual-purpose Spider/Coupé with a retractable hard top that closes in just 14 seconds.
Despite its extraordinary performance, the California 2+ is also exceptionally easy to drive and has a space
behind the front seats that makes it supremely flexible in terms of usage."
The latest photographs of the new Pininfarina-styled retractable hard top convertible released today show it
with its top closed and in an Azzurro California livery. Azzurro California was the colour chosen for the
legendary 1960s spider's appearance at the New York Auto Show in 1962 and proved one of the firm favourites with owners of that model too.
Like the rest of the current Prancing Horse range, the Ferrari California has been aerodynamically designed to
deliver significant downforce values – 70 kg at 200 Km/h, in fact.
This is the first time too that the new 7-speed dual clutch has been used on a Ferrari car. This technology is
the fruit of in-depth gear shifting systems research by the Scuderia Ferrari. The system utilised on the Ferrari
California cuts the gear shifting time to zero and enhances to the utmost the car's performance in terms of
comfort and driveability.
Performance is further boosted by the new Launch Control button which when hit delivers blistering high
performance starts by ensuring correct torque delivery and preventing tyre spin during acceleration.
The car is 4560 mm in length, 1900 mm wide and has a wheel base of 2700 mm.
The luggage capacity of the Ferrari California provides further proof of the versatility of this latest addition
to the Prancing Horse range: when the roof is up, the boot has a 360-litre capacity and a 260-litre capacity
when it is down.
For the first time on a Prancing Horse car, the boot and cabin communicate directly, allowing a choice of luggage
configurations to be used.
Particular attention was also paid to fuel consumption levels which in the case of the ECE combined cycle is
13.2 l/100 km with CO2 emission levels of around 310 g/km.