He may not have a job lined up at the moment, but that hasn’t stopped Top Gear presenter James May from going through with ordering the last Ferrari 458 Speciale to be produced in Maranello.
It’s certainly a rare predicament for someone to find themselves in. It’s not often that an unemployed individual can go ahead with purchasing a car, let alone one as rare, powerful and expensive as a Ferrari; in an April 27 article for Driving.co.uk, May referred to it as his “hashtag firstworldproblem.” But to his defense, the ability to order this car came around as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and was presented prior to the now-infamous “fracas.”
Initially, his plan was to order a 488 GTB, the newest, most powerful V8 production vehicle from Ferrari, as a way to celebrate the show’s pending contract renewal. But, as he describes, the 458 Speciale is both a car he has driven and loved, as well as the final normally aspirated mid-engined V8 from Ferrari. The decision became to buy a car he loved and an historic model.
His first call to Ferrari didn’t quite pan out as planned, as all of the 458 Speciales slated for production had been ordered and purchased. But because of just how significant James May is in the automotive world, they agreed to produce one additional model specifically for him.
It was not long after the order had been placed that the fracas ensued, and the pending contract renewal turned to contract cancellation. However, despite the issue of access to a paycheck, May took a trip to Maranello to select his custom details.
“It’s an intoxicating experience. I was in there for hours, troubled only by the knowledge I couldn’t pay for any of it,” he said in his article. In the end, he opted for nearly every feature, and settled on a bright orange paint, rather than his first choice of a dark blue.
Be sure to read May’s entire article about his ordering experience at Driving.co.uk, and take a minute to browse our exclusive listings of 458 Speciales below.
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