We can remember when the introduction of a new Ferrari was a rare and historic occasion. Today, a healthy, profitable, well-managed Ferrari is turning out new cars at a blistering pace. The Paris introduction of the F430 marks the second new Ferrari model this year (after the 612 Scaglietti, which was unveiled at Detroit). The F430-which replaces the 360 Modena-isn't as dramatic a change as the 612 is from the 456GT, however. A larger, 4.3-liter, V-8 sits amidships, where it spins out 483 horsepower (at 8500 rpm) and 343 pound-feet of torque, a hefty boost over the 3.6 liter in the 360 Modena, which managed 394 horsepower in standard trim and 425 in the Challenge Stradale, and-more importantly-much more competitive with the Lamborghini Gallardo's 492 horsepower and the Ford GT's 500. Ferrari says its paddle-shift F1 gearbox now shifts even quicker, but we're glad to still see the choice of a traditional, stir-it-with-a-stick, manual. Either way, the F430 will shriek from 0 to 60 mph in under 4 seconds. Top speed is 196 mph. Carbon-ceramic brakes are an option. Outside, new lower body panels effect an impressive transformation despite the carryover greenhouse and near-identical dimensions. Air intakes at the front and along the body sides are larger and more aggressive; the headlight pods are straked straight back; and the rear the taillights are copped from the Enzo. Sales don't start in the U.S. until next year.
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