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Famously, the F40 uses a 2.9-litre, twin-turbo V8 producing 478 horsepower. This engine was borrowed from the 288GTO, although it featured plenty of enhancements. The only transmission offered was a 5-speed manual. Other mechanical details include a double-wishbone suspension setup that allowed the driver to raise the car for manoeuvring over speed bumps and the like.
Built for the most passionate (and wealthy) Ferrari owners who desired nothing more than an all-out performance machine, the F40 has only gained in popularity as carmakers, including Ferrari, venture further away from this type of car and more towards technologically-laden, safety-oriented vehicles each year. When it debuted, it marked the fastest and most expensive Ferrari ever built, and while that designation has been taken over by its successors, the F40 is still special enough to retain its exalted status. In fact, the F40’s immediate successor, the F50, struggled to climb out of its monumental shadow, even though it is a better car.
30 years on and for many the F40 is still King. That just shows just how good the F40 really is.
For me the F40 is the one. Faster cars have come out since, but in my opinion the Ferrari F40 is the greatest car ever designed by any car manufacturer. The car is perfect from every angle, and is everything that Ferrari has ever stood for in the past 70 years. The fact that Enzo himself was involved as one of his last tasks, just adds to the mystery of just why the F40 is so perfect.
I’ve seen at sat in many F40s since they launched, but for me the one memory that sticks out is when I was about 15 years old. I was on a school trip into London, and came across a Ferrari Showroom just off Piccadilly. As I got talking to the salesman, he told me he had brand new F40 being delivered that day, and if I stuck around I could watch it be delivered. I had never seen one before so knew this was a unique opportunity!
Despite waiting around for an hour, we just didn’t know how long the driver was going to be, and I had to leave and go home. This was of course pre-mobile phone days. I never got to see that F40 and it was a few more years before I got to see one in the flesh. I remember that day too.
Amazingly I have just realised I have never experienced a drive in a Ferrari F40. Maybe I’m too afraid of meeting my Hero.
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