Everyone has that “one friend”. The person you could call to get you out of a bad situation, or someone who watches enough forensic documentaries to help you eliminate the evidence. Having a Ferrari F40 in your garage is like keeping a machete next to your silverware. No matter what else is in your collection, the F40 will always evoke a notion that “one of these is not like the others”. Precisely the feeling Enzo was aiming for with his final build.
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For the 40th anniversary of his company, they decided to rebuke the notions that Ferrari was becoming more luxury than performance. Taking lessons learned on the 288 GTO, stylists at Pininfarina sculpted a masterpiece of aerodynamic efficiency. Extensive use of Kevlar and other composites took Ferrari into uncharted waters. You need an F40 because it is a Formula 1 car with a body that is technically street legal. Because it shares almost nothing with other Ferrari models, every component was designed to dominate.
Take a moment to consider the complexity of your daily driver. Several computers and a hundred miles of wiring work together to keep you entertained and divorced from the driving experience. The F40 has no radio or speakers. Turn your phone off because the turbos will not allow for civilized conversation. Many are quick to deride the car’s abilities because magazine reviews cried about turbo lag. If you can’t listen to your car, the F40 isn’t for you. The center exhaust pipe is fed by the turbo’s waste gates and it will teach you how to keep the car in boost. A small V8 with giant turbos demands more downshifts than anything you are accustomed to, but that is what makes it so rewarding.
Without power steering, you will feel every nuance of the road and know exactly when the front tires will give up. Threshold braking is the art of stopping without ABS or even power brakes. You must be able to interpret what you hear and feel and translate them into inputs the car can understand. After driving an F40, drivers fall into two categories: The first type are visibly shaken and usually require counseling, but the others ask if they can borrow it for the weekend. Ferrari will never build another supercar without power windows or paddle shifters, which is why you should experience the F40 for yourself.