15th Sep 2018 2:01 pm
Ferrari’s new entry-level model is lighter and more powerful than the California; it is powered by a 600hp 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8.
Ferrari is set to launch the Portofino, its new entry-level model that will replace the California, in India on September 28, 2018.
The Portofino, which made its debut at Ferrari’s 70th anniversary event in Italy last year, is more stylish, more rigid, more powerful and lighter than the California. Ferrari says the chassis has been redesigned with a focus on reducing weight (down by 80kg) while improving torsional rigidity; the Portofino is claimed to be 35 percent stiffer.
Named after an Italian fishing village, the Portofino has a striking design and a sporty character with clever aerodynamics at play. At the front is a large radiator grille flanked by new full-LED headlights assembly. The L-shaped headlights hide an air intake and there’s the minutest of ridges at the rear end to aid downforce at the back.
Powering the folding hard-top convertible is a 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8. It’s the same unit as the California T but has been completely reworked to put out an additional 40 horses, bringing the total output to [email protected] 7,500 rpm. Torque is up marginally by 5Nm to [email protected] 5,250rpm. The Portofino’s top speed is claimed to be more than 320kph.
Importantly, the Ferrari Portofino is the first GT in Ferrari’s range to be fitted with an electro-mechanical steering (previous models used a hydraulic unit), which Ferrari says, allows for a seven percent reduction in steering ratio, thereby making the steering more responsive.
In terms of comfort and features, there’s a new 10.2-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, 18-way electrically adjustable seats and an optional 8.8-inch touchscreen for the passenger. There’s also a new wind deflector which is claimed to cut air flow inside the cabin, when the top is down, by 30 percent.
Ferrari believes the Portofino is an important model for India and will bring first time buyers under its fold. In a recent interview to Autocar India, Dieter Knechtel, CEO, (Far East and Middle-east), said, “The California was one of the most successful models in Ferrari history. Perhaps India is bit more of a sportscar-minded market. Portofino offers even higher value and versatility than the California, so it could be an interesting car for India,” he said.
The Portofino will be sold via Ferrari’s two dealerships in the country, Select Cars in New Delhi and Navnit Motors in Mumbai. Ferrari New Delhi is set to hold the launch on September 28.