After continued speculation, an excessive number of artist renderings and then leaked photos last week, Ferrari has now officially revealed the 458 Spider with a retractable hard top.
A world’s first for a mid-engine car, the hard top is made of aluminum and fits just in front of the engine compartment without affecting performance or aerodynamics. Ferrari even claims it weighs less than a traditional folding soft top (55 lbs to be exact), and takes just 14 seconds to open or close.
The stunning look of the car is even functional, with the new rear design helping to direct air towards to engine intakes, as well as to the clutch and gearbox oil coolers. In addition, the Spider comes with an electrically-deployable wind screen to reduce turbulence in the cockpit and allow “normal conversation” at speeds of up to 124 mph.
Powering the Spider is the same 562-hp 4.5-liter V8 engine as the coupe, although Ferrari has made adjustments to the suspension setup, throttle mapping and exhaust to deliver an optimized top-down experience.
Ferrari will officially reveal the car on September 13th at the Frankfurt Auto Show. Look for plenty more pictures then.
GALLERY: Ferrari 458 Spider
Watch video of the hard-top in action after the jump:
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