Earlier this year Swiss design firm Officine Fioravanti announced its intent to “enrich the pureness” of one of Ferrari’s most iconic models, the wildly-80s besidestraked Testarossa. The company pushed the envelope of modern technology to make the legendary car faster, more powerful, and just all-around better. The culmination of several months of testing and advancement on a decades-old platform is this impressive machine. It, um, looks exactly like a Testarossa. So what gives?
Unlike period modifier Koenig, Fioravanti keeps the things that make the Testarossa a poster car. The modified car still has its monospecchio mirror and mandolin-slicer side strakes. It still has pop-up headlamps and delightfully simple wide five-spoke wheels. In spite of the massive modifications hiding under the skin, this car looks like it jumped right off the page of your late-1980s Car and Driver. “No reason to teach a maestro one more lesson,” says Fioravanti of the car’s aesthetic appearance.
The wheels, while looking fairly convincing, are actually part of the upgrade package. The original magnesium 16-inch five spokers have been swapped out for a 17 in the front and 18 in the rear wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport rubber bands. I’ve driven a number of 80s and 90s icons that have been fitted with modern rubber, and it’s like a day/night difference in grip. Tire tech has moved on so much in the last thirty to forty years, and new tires do a lot to tame wild beasts. Or facilitate a big bump in horsepower.
Speaking of horsepower, this machine has been given a hefty bump. With a new engine block, a new intake, a re-routed exhaust system, and fresh in-house-developed fuel injection, the 4.9-liter flat-twelve engine now makes 500 horsepower and 443 lb-ft of torque. That’s an improvement of 120 prancing horses and 96 lub-feet from stock. That’s a whole lot of effort to go to in order to make 120 horsepower, but consider this; the stock Testarossa motor revved to 6,800 rpm (pathetic) and the new engine zings out to (a mighty) 9,000 rippums. Wow!
To make the car as good to drive around corners as it is to plant the throttle on a straight, Officine Fioravanti worked with Öhlins to build a special electronically-controlled remote-reservoir adaptive ride suspension system. There are six-way adjustable anti-roll bars, a trick front-end lift system for navigating speed bumps and steep driveways, and several driving modes. In addition to the adjustable suspension, the Officine Fioravanti Testarossa offers driver-adjustment for the exhaust, ABS, and traction control. If you’re feeling froggy, you can turn ABS and traction control fully off. Maybe don’t.
Back in 1987, independent testing showed the Testarossa was capable of 185 miles per hour. With more power, advanced ride-height-adjustable suspension, and an aerodynamically efficient flat bottom, the car finally topped 200 with an alleged 201 mile per hour run. That’s a lot of work for 16 miles per hour, but for bragging rights, it means all the difference. For what it’s worth, the OF Testa weighs 267 pounds less than it did stock, as well. So this shouldn’t be a one-trick top-speed pony, but instead a well-rounded thoroughbred.
There’s no word yet on how many of these cars will be produced, or how much they’re going to cost, but for now we can live in a dream world where we can totally afford one. It’s Schroedinger’s Ferrari. Until a price is unveiled, the dream of buying one is both alive and dead at the same time. While this prototype is ready for prime time, the customer cars haven’t been started yet. Chances are, if you really want one, you’ll already know how much it will cost. I’ll guess low-to-mid seven figures. Two mil?