You knew that Ferrari was never going to take coming onslaughts from Porsche and Mercedes without striking back.
Even though Porsche hardly sells more cars than the AMG wing of Mercedes, sitting atop the German sports car throne can be a bit of an ordeal. Each year it seems that another automaker announces its own crack at the 911’s reign of terror, and though Mercedes and McLaren have been searching for a weak point in Porsche’s armor for years, it’s a marker of what the automaker has accomplished when Maranello begins to do the same. According to Autocar, that’s what Ferrari is doing.
Ferrari being Ferrari, it won’t take an offensive play from the upcoming 911 GT2 sitting down and thanks to spy shots uncovered by the British motoring publication, we now know that a more hardcore variant of the 488 GTB is on its way to answer the Porsche threat by lobbing horsepower, supreme engineering, and Italian passion for its rich heritage at the Germans. Autocar speculates that the hardened Ferrari will be called the 488 GTO and following the recipe of any top-line track variant, will lose weight and gain more power. Inside, the 3.9-liter twin-turbo V8 will see internal modifications that ensure the engine won’t cave under the increased turbo boost.
Combined, the gain should be substantial, with the 488 GTO said to make 700 horsepower and a mountain of extra torque to surpass the 488 GTB’s 660 horsepower and 561 lb-ft of torque. Stripped away will be sound deadening material and non-essential interior parts and going in will be thinned glass for the windscreen and side windows, ceramic brakes reworked for weight loss, and forged wheels to reduce unsprung mass. Unfortunately, to beat Porsche and whatever souped-up McLaren 720S variant that follows, Ferrari has to do more, so it decided to add some intelligence to the 488’s silicon brains to go with the physical improvements.
Ferrari's Slide Slip Angle Control has gotten a software upgrade for better chassis control and the car’s aerodynamic body will see more aggressive angles that gulp up wind and spit out additional downforce. Expect to hear more about this epic Maranello monster as its anticipated 2018 release date approaches.