Ferrari Knows Exactly Who Will Buy The Portofino M

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The Ferrari Portofino M is just hitting showrooms and the Italian marque has great expectations for its latest hardtop convertible. An updated version of the already excellent Portofino, the Portofino M ('M' as in 'Modificata') is not the least expensive model in Ferrari's current lineup - that would be the new Roma - but it does have a mission for the Prancing Horse: to bring in first-time customers.

Ferrari product marketing manager Marco Bai told Automotive News it expects to lure in previous and current owners of the Ferrari California and California T convertibles along with "spider lovers." However, a full 50 percent of the Portofino M's sales are expected to come from those who've never owned a Ferrari before.

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Existing Portofino owners may also be tempted to head to their local Ferrari dealer for a trade-in because the supercar's 3.9-liter twin-turbo V8 has been updated to produce 612 hp thanks to modifying the camshaft and tweaking the engine calibration. The seven-speed dual-clutch transmission has been swapped in favor of an eight-speed dual-clutch, improving fuel economy in both city and highway driving while a gasoline particulate filter has been added to meet strict new European emissions standards.

There are a few exterior styling changes, specifically at the front end, and the interior received some significant upgrades as well but Ferrari opted to retain conventional buttons instead of adding the Roma's touchscreen controls. "It made no sense to transfer hi-tech touch elements in an environment very different from the Roma," Bai added.

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2019-2020 Ferrari Portofino Engine Ferrari

Ferrari is adamant the Portofino M is not a convertible version of the Roma despite the fact they have the same engine and similar pricing. Ferrari is confident they won't compete with each other because, typically, coupe and convertible buyers come from two distinct groups. Ferrari hasn't announced North American pricing for the Portofino M, though it's expected to begin above $225,000.

Ferrari is clearly aware that Portofino M buyers are not necessarily brand loyal and are likely to cross-shop the competition which includes the Aston Martin DB11 Volante, Bentley Continental GT convertible, and the Jaguar F-Type SVR convertible. US pricing should be announced shortly because the Portofino M is due to go on sale sometime this summer.

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Source Credits: Automotive News Europe

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