And it can be yours... for the right price.
Those of you with shorter memories will likely remember our recent discussion on the Ferrari F430, where we told you to go buy one with the gated manual transmission option. Most F430 models were equipped with the optional F1 semi-automatic transmission, which feels dated compared to a modern dual-clutch and can't match the pleasure provided by rowing the gears on a gated box. Sadly, automakers like Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Maserati no longer build manual transmission cars, making models like the F430 highly desirable on the used market.
When it came time for Ferrari to build the hardcore, track-focused version of the F430, the 430 Scuderia, it decided to drop the option for the manual transmission altogether. Ferrari must have thought, why would someone want a slower transmission on their track car? Even though a 430 Scuderia never left the factory with a manual transmission, European Auto Group (EAG) out of San Antonio, Texas has built one, claiming it's the only manual 430 Scuderia in the world.
To our knowledge, nothing like this has ever been attempted before. Many people have converted the standard F430 to manual but the same hasn't been performed on a Scuderia. Unlike the base car, the Scuderia was never offered with a manual, making the conversion more difficult to complete.
EAG says it performed the conversion using Ferrari parts only in order to maintain the car's pedigree and originality. The folks over at EAG also stressed to us that this was a conversion, not a swap. Ferrari didn't just have a spare manual gearbox for a Scuderia lying around the factory since it never built one in the first place. Instead, this car still uses the stock transmission, but the clutch is now controlled via the driver's left foot rather than a computer.
Building this car was no easy task. EAG says it even flew out the president of Ferrari to their shop to receive his blessing on the build. Rather worryingly, he said, "Good luck. You can't do it." Fortunately, he didn't mean EAG wasn't allowed to do it, just that the shop would not be able to.
For the build to work, EAG had to source a wiring harness for the car and purchase the last clutch pedal available from Ferrari. The gate and shifter were also ordered from Ferrari but had to be custom-fitted to the Scuderia's unique center console, which is not shared with the standard F430.
The completed job looks remarkably well done, almost as if it came from the factory in Maranello. The only noticeable signs that this car used to be automatic are two small holes in the steering column where the paddle shifters used to protrude from. Aside from the conversion, EAG also added a radio for better daily usability and the car itself has over $50,000 worth of carbon fiber upgrades.
So, what makes this car so special? Aside from this example being the only one of its kind, the Ferrari 430 Scuderia used a tuned version of the F430's 4.3-liter V8 producing 503 horsepower and 347 lb-ft of torque (the base car produced 483 hp and 343 lb-ft of torque). The Scuderia was also lighter by 221 pounds with a curb weight of just 2,975 pounds. Ferrari ditched the sound deadening, carpets, radio, and anything else that would have compromised weight.
Even with the six-speed F1 transmission, the Scuderia was much more of a handful to drive than the base car. EAG's manual transmission makes the car even more lively, meaning you need to be focused in order to drive it. A manual F430 is a unique driving experience but EAG says this Scuderia drives, unlike any other Ferrari. If you've got a Ferrari collection, this one-of-one 430 Scuderia is a must-have addition.
If this whole package sounds tempting, the car is now for sale with an asking price of $389,900. Even for a 430 Scuderia, this number is high. The next closest coupe we saw for sale was $100,000 less but if you factor in this car's uniqueness and the amount of work that went into it, the price doesn't seem unreasonable. We actually spotted several 430 Scuderia Spider models selling for more than this figure.
If this price sounds a bit too steep and you'd be willing to settle for a base F430 with a manual transmission, EAG says it will perform a conversion for around $35,000. We asked EAG if it would perform another Scuderia conversion for the right price but it seemed like such a request would not come cheap. As for the F430 conversions, we'd say $35,000 seems like a fair price considering the car will be worth more with a manual than with the F1 transmission.
The market for supercars with a gated manual transmission is heating up tremendously. We advise getting in while prices are still relatively stable before cars like this become untouchable to anyone who's bank account doesn't have 10 digits.