Dallas Cowboys fans always used to say the roof of the Cowboys stadium opened so God could watch his favoritc team. Maybe God wanted a peck inside Ferrari s ultimate road car, too. The 218-mph, 949-horscpowcr hybrid-electric LaFerrari will soon be available with a removable roof.
If there was ever a problem with the original $1.4 million V-12 coupe, unveiled in 2013, it wasn’t the hard top but the fact that Ferrari only made 499 of them. The cars were snapped up by the lucky few—people like singer Sammy Hagar and celebrity’ chef Gordon Ramsay — before they’ even officially went on sale, leaving many disappointed customers. To case their pain, Ferrari announced the release of an open-air spider version of the LaFerrari this fall, which will likely be produced in a limited run of 150. But no need to call your dealer — all of these prancing horses reportedly’ have already sold, too.
Getting a look inside the LaFerrari is instructive, because the entire car is built around the driver’s seat, in the manner of the marques Formula 1 racecars. Like the competition models, the LaFerrari drivers seat is custom molded to specifically fit the driver and is mounted for precision balance, setting the pilot as low and as far back in the machine as physically possible.
Typically, taking the roof off a car reduces its stiffness, contributing to rattles over bumps and imprecise, unpredictable handling. But Ferrari says the open-top LaFerrari s carbon fiber chassis is reinforced to prevent that, ensuring that the alfresco model provides exactly the same handling characteristics as the coupe. And while an open roof normally increases drag, reducing the top speed of convertible models, the maestros of Maranello say they’ve honed the roadsters aerodynamics to guarantee the same top speed, open or closed.
Those arc the kind of specs that can drive a man to obsess. In fact, one coupe owner in Florida is so frustrated at not getting a convertible, he’s suing Ferrari. The 85-year-old collector complained in court filings that denying him a chance to buy the new LaFerrari harms his reputation and “holds him up to ridicule, disrespect, and disrepute in his profession, trade, occupation, avocation, and among his friends and business and social associates.” And he might just have a point.