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Paris show: Ferrari lops 599’s top

Top wide open: Ferrari has lifted the lid on its flagship 599 GTB Fiorano, but only for a select few.

Convertible 599 Fiorano emerges as Ferrari celebrates Pininfarina’s 80th birthday

27 Sep 2010

FERRARI has revealed a convertible version of its range-topping 599 GTB Fiorano coupe to celebrate the 80th anniversary of Pininfarina, the design house that styled it.

Making it the most exclusive Ferrari production model ever, however, Ferrari has advised it will produce just 80 examples of the first open-top 599, all left-hand drive and all of which have already been sold following a private viewing by potential owners at California’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in August.

34 center imageNow confirmed to make its global debut at the Paris motor show on September 30, the limited-edition Ferrari will be known as the SA Aperta, which is a nod to both Sergio Pininfarina and his son Andrea – “whose company and work have been linked to the most successful road-going cars ever built at Maranello”, said Ferrari – and the Italian word for ‘open’.

The SA Aperta will be powered by a 500kW version of the ‘garden-variety’ 599’s front-mounted 456kW/608Nm 6.0-litre V12, making it the first open-top V12 Ferrari since the 575M Superamerica, which was built in 2005 and 2006 and was based on the 599’s predecessor, the 575 Maranello.

With F430 Spider production ceasing last year, the V8-powered California convertible is the only other open-top model in the current Ferrari line-up – at least until a topless version of the new 458 Italia coupe appears.

Differentiating the SA Aperta from the fixed-roof 599 is a lower-slung windscreen and a “light soft-top designed to be used only if the weather gets particularly bad”.

Conceptually similar to Porsche’s limited-edition 911 Speedster, which will also make its world premiere at Paris, the SA Aperta also features ‘double-bubble’ rear bodywork that conceals the folding soft-top and features two aerodynamic fins integrating the rollbars and mimicking the outline of the seats.

According to Ferrari, the SA Aperta chassis has also been “redesigned to deliver a standard of stiffness comparable to that of the normal Ferrari 599”, resulting in a “negligible” increase in weight.

Inside, the SA Aperta comes with even more sophisticated materials, trim and colours to further justify a pricetag that is expected to be well in excess of 400,000 Euro ($A561,000).

The SA Aperta will likely be the final derivative of the 599 before it is replaced by an all-new two-seat coupe flagship in 2012 – one of six new models the Italian supercar maker has promised to deliver by 2013.

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