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When you ask an enthusiast what Ferrari sold today is the finest, the answer won’t necessarily be the wildly fast 599GTB or the more luxurious 612 Scaglietti. No, most will actually say it’s the cheapest model, the mid-engined F430. Thanks to an engine that rides right behind the driver’s hair, the F430 has spectacular balance good for some real track day thrills. That engine also just happens to be a 4.3-liter V-8 that develops 483 hp at an astounding 8500 rpm. Some race car engines don’t even rev that high.
It’s a good thing the F430 is such a spectacular car, because for Ferrari convertible buyers, it’s the only current option. The price of admission starts right around $200,000, but the payoff is an emotional experience that’s indescribable. With the top down, you can hear the V-8’s crescendo as you run whop, whop, whop through the gears. Thanks to a glass cover, everyone can see that engine as well, in all its red-headed glory.