Page 197 - Simply Abu Dhabi Magazine IV

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The Drive of My Life
With the capacity to accelerate from 0-62mph in just
3.4sec, it was with a beating heart that I stepped into the
Spider. Ergonomically designed to put all the controls
at your fingertips the dashboard has its own unique
character. With a reinforced chassis that doesn’t take
anything away from the sheer power of the car and a
modified Ferrari exhaust system specially designed for
this convertible, the unbelievable roar of the engine lets
you know you are driving a dramatic supercar, yet it is
incredibly reassuring and from the minute I selected first
gear and pulled away with no lurching, it was a brilliantly
smooth drive. With just a little pressure on the throttle
from my right foot the highly responsive engine offered
up a diverse range of sounds from the exhaust gases
that were literally like music to my ears. With a variety
of options I decided to test the safe sport mode before
moving on to the more exhilarating ‘all-systems-go’ set up
for a more challenging ride which still offered sensational
precision due to the finely tuned engineering. Boys
like their toys and when it comes to performance the
exploitable degrees of response, noise and playfulness
that the various Manettino settings allow are every car-
lover’s dream. The array of set-ups were just one of many
technical highlights for me, but I think what truly blew
me away was the sheer speed. At times I was literally on
the edge of my seat holding my breath in anticipation of
an upcoming nasty dip in the road that it was impossible
to avoid, but the spectacular Spider cleared them all
without flinching and I loved every heart-stopping second
of it.
Awesome Acceleration
This enlivening supercar seems too good to be true when
it comes to its instinctive correlation to the outside
elements as you experience a sensation of speed no driving
simulation could ever come close to emulating. It felt
almost effortless to drive as once I was settled behind
the wheel and had started up the engine the controls
were so responsive and the steering so beautifully precise,
the Spider speeded away on a mission with apparently
very little input. Even on seemingly poor ground, the
suspension coped fantastically, keeping the utmost
control. This surpassed any test drive you could imagine
in that it wasn’t simply a drive, but rather a full-on
adrenalin rush, racing through the fresh air at speeds of
130mph plus – its top speed is a whopping 198mph –
that had my heart racing and all my senses on top alert. If
you feel in need of a little excitement to remind you how
great it is to be alive this is one bracing experience I can
whole-heartedly recommend – invigorating, enlivening
and totally awesome!
458 Sp i de r
The Kudos of Car Ownership
All my dreams had come true. With marvellous arching
bodywork over the wheels, you can’t fail to feel like
a hugely significant presence on the road behind the
wheel of this beauty. You’re guaranteed to make an
impression in this powerful convertible supercar –
everyone can see and hear you coming which just add to
the awesome appeal of driving such a spectacular piece
of machinery. A true revolution in the world of Ferrari,
this glorious powerhouse has the sound, sensational
speed and mind-blowing handling of a supercar whilst
being safe and reliable – after all, we shouldn’t get
carried away and forget the practicalities! Promoted as
a sociable car, I immediately saw the appeal for couples
wanting to go for a fantastic drive with the roof down
and I know Jordana is keen to be taken for more than a
spin to see the Spider put through its paces, so it is also
the perfect car for thrill seekers too. Naturally aspirated
4,499cc V8 with dual-clutch F1 paddle shift gearbox,
rear-wheel drive, the Ferrari 458 Spider doesn’t come
cheap with a sale price of £198,856 but as the supercar
to be seen (as well as heard) in, I don’t doubt there
will be a queue of eager car owners signing up to put it
through its paces and I may just be first in that queue...
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