Ferrari SP38 Unveiled
What designer or artist hasn’t dreamed of making their own car? The desire to design and build my own car was my motivation to learn metal shaping. It evolved into my automotive sculpture career which in turn progressed into the custom/restoration projects I am now doing. Understandably, I have a special fondness for the Ferrari One-Off Programme also known as “Special Projects”. Today they debuted their latest creation the Ferrari SP38.
The Ferrari SP38 that debuted at Fiorano is based off the Ferrari 488 GTB underpinnings. As stated in their official press release below, the design of the Ferrari SP38 is meant to be inspired by the legendary F40. It was created for a special client that wanted a dual purpose driver/track car. It features a signature “Deborah Red” triple stage paint job. You know, one of their mind blowing triple layer paints that can never be photographed correctly!
The F40 has long been one of my most favorite car designs. I have one in my shop and stare at it every single day as I drink my morning coffee. It is in my opinion the perfect embodiment of no holds barred car design. It is unapologetic and barbaric in the most glorious way. It is a gratuitous and excessive gesture made at the peak of no frills, poseurs need not apply, super car design. More importantly, it was the last Ferrari that Enzo himself blessed.
So, does this new SP38 live up to it’s inspiration? It’s always hard to tell from a few press photos but I’m going to need more time. There are some surfaces that I really like and others that leave me unsure. I do like the taut surfacing, proportions and the silhouette. I like the design from the rear quarters forward. I’m not completely sold on the “squinty” headlights. I also am not convinced yet about the whole rear fascia design. Maybe it’s just the angle of the photograph that is throwing me off. Without the official press release I wouldn’t have immediately thought F40 when viewing the design. I’m still not sure I even see many distinguishable F40 design cues. Perhaps I am just subconsciously stuck on that massive rear wing? F40 inspired or not I do really, really like it on its’ own as a future design direction.
What are your thoughts? Take a look at the images below and share what you think. Does this latest design seem F40 inspired? How do you like it as a whole? Thumbs up or down?
The Ferrari SP38,
The New Creation from the One-Off Programme
Maranello, May 23 2018 – The Ferrari SP38, the latest offspring from Ferrari’s One-Off programme, has been unveiled at Fiorano where, after the ceremonial handover to one of Ferrari’s most dedicated customers, the car was immediately put through its paces in a series of hot laps.
Designed by the Ferrari Design Centre on the chassis and running gear of the 488 GTB, this unique car reflects the specific vision of a client with a deep passion for racing. The result is a model that can be driven both on road and on track, while at the same time expressing all the beauty and innovation inherent in Ferrari’s road cars.
The all-new bodywork, in a newly conceived three-layer metallic red, marks a radical departure from the language aesthetic of the donor car. The twin-turbo, twin-intercooler set-up of the award-winning 488 GTB inspired the team to reference the mighty F40 as an icon from which to instruct the project’s general direction.
Compared to the 488 chassis, the visual mass of SP38 appears concentrated over the rear wheels as the wedge design sharply stretches towards the front. In plan view, the strongly tapered nose expands towards muscular wheelarches, giving the car potency and agility. Specific inset headlights were designed to be as thin as possible, with the mandatory DRL (daytime running lights) units relocated to add character and functionality to a slim bumper lip reminiscent of the 308 GTB. On the side, the defining air scoop of the 488 GTB is completely concealed where the sheet metal folds in on itself from the low beltline on the door and into the rear wheelarch and three-quarter light.
The effect is dramatic, as it reinforces the importance of the rear volume while, at the same time, maintaining the air flow to the intercoolers at the base of the side window. The dynamic styling continues over the engine cover, which sheds its rear glass and is treated as a flip-up assembly in carbon fibre with shutlines slashing the flanks in a gesture directly reminiscent of the F40’s. Three transversal slats slash across the engine cover to evacuate engine heat, and the smooth integration of a substantial rear spoiler is a hint at the famous rear wing of the F40. The trailing edge of the spoiler links seamlessly with the wing and with the aerodynamic diffuser at the bottom, to create a suggestive frame surrounding the tail volume.
A full Tailor Made cabin trim puts the finished touches on this truly special Ferrari, which will be on public display for the first time at the upcoming Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este on Saturday 26th May 2018.
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