Ferrari SF90 Spider Promises Open-Top Driving With No Performance Penalty

Posted by Jek Ray Low
13 Nov 2020

Are you discontent with the amount of vertical real estate you currently have with your Ferrari SF90? Want the performance of said car but with a sense of added drama? You’re in luck – Ferrari just launched their SF90 Stradale Spider in what they’ve decided to call a dedicated digital event.

Could the SF90 Stradale Spider be the first plug-in hybrid convertible supercar ever? Ferrari seems to think so; when pressed for an answer on what other models the SF90 could potentially rival, none could be identified.

Preservation Of The Driving Experience
Ferrari wanted to enhance the enjoyment of the SF90 by lobbing its roof off, and not give up any of the coupe’s capabilities. As such, the SF90 Stradale Spider is only a smidge heavier, 100 kilograms up over its hardtop brethren, with no significant losses in stiffness. As the car has always been designed with a cabrio variant in mind, there is no need for copious amounts of additional bracing; 80% of the additional weight is from the roof mechanism itself.

The Powertrain
Here are some of the headline figures. You will find a 4.0 litre turbocharged V8 mounted in the middle of the car. An 8-speed gearbox, which is 20% smaller than the 7 speed units that it succeeds but 10 kilograms lighter, hangs off the back of the long block, with an MGU-K motor attached to that. 2 electric motors are attached to the front axle in a system that Ferrari is calling the RAC-e, or Cornering Angle Regulator, Electric. We are starting to believe the FXX-K was named that way intentionally…

This means a combined total output of 100bhp, and that’s enough to propel the car to a face-melting 340 km/h. The century sprint time is an impressive 2.5 seconds, but the car’s 0-200km/h time is 0.3 seconds down on its hardtop stablemate at 7 seconds.

The smarts onboard can monitor and manipulate power output from each source independently in a series of different modes. In pure EV mode, the 7.9 kWh battery translates into a range of 25km, and a top speed of 135 km/h. You can unleash the raging Italian stallion in the car’s Qualifying mode, in which all systems are designed to deliver maximum power to the road, with the electronics prioritising electrical performance over battery charging.

Keeping Its Design Intact
Automakers have sullied the aesthetics of some of their coupe models in the cabrio conversion. Ferraris have always been on the cutting edge of design and technology, so the SF90 Stradale Spider has a lot of live up to.

Well it’s Ferrari, so you can almost guarantee they’ll deliver in the visual department. No floppy soft top here, the car sports their Retractable Hard Top (RHT), which first made an appearance on the 458 Spider back in 2011. It offers occupants superior sheltering from external elements with no deformation at speed and maintaining stylistic purity when the roof is up.



Inside The Cockpit
The lack of a roof offers curious onlookers a better look at the dashboard, which is identical to that of the SF90 Stradale. This means a fighter jet-inspired, driver-centric cockpit, with a smattering of digital displays and touch-sensitive pads with haptic feedback.

Sans the roof, the sound of the V8 is amplified as it is when you are behind the wheel. Ferrari though, have decided to further dramatise that experience, acknowledging that part of the thrill in some spirited driving comes from the soundtrack of the ICE. They’ve developed a “Hot Tube System”, which precisely transmits sound into the cockpit for a more visceral auditory experience when the engine is being pushed to the limits.



What If The Base SF90 Stradale Spider Isn’t Enough?
Do not fret – Ferrari has you covered. If the “base model” (can you actually call any of their offerings that?) isn’t enough for you, you can option your car with the Assetto Fiorano pack. This equips the car with racing-derived Multimatic shock absorbers, some serious weight reduction with even more carbon and titanium to the tune of almost 21 kilos, as well as increased aerodynamic grip from a carbon fibre rear wing. Traction comes courtesy of Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 Tyres, which are mounted on some carbon fibre wheels.

Left Hand Drive Deliveries will start sometime early next year, with other markets set to follow soon after. No official word on pricing locally, but with prior cabrio variants costing 10% more than their hardtop counterparts, you can expect the SF90 Stradale Spider to be north of SGD$2million before options.


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