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Ferrari unveils another beautiful one-off model

The SP-8 roadster is the latest addition to the family

The SP-8 is a new Ferrari that you can't buy. PHOTO FROM FERRARI

Ferrari is perhaps the most valuable and most hallowed automobile brand, thanks to its winning legacy in motorsports, achingly beautiful design, and that exclusivity with an air of aristocratic arrogance making it so desirable. Even if you had a boatload of cash, a first-time Ferrari buyer won’t be given the privilege to buy the brand’s most sought-after models.

You need to establish a relationship with Ferrari, prove you’re a dyed-in-the-wool enthusiast who aims to enter into long-term ownership with a Ferrari model, and not be a ‘flipper’ who sells a new Ferrari to the secondary market for a profit. Heaven forbid!

Imagine then what sort of relationship you must have with Maranello, for them to build a one-off bespoke model just for you?

Well, that’s what Ferrari has done for one such distinguished gentleman from Taiwan.

Good luck driving this in the rain. PHOTO FROM FERRARI

Designed by Ferrari Styling Center (led by Flavio Manzoni), the SP-8 is a midship V8-powered roadster based on the F8 Spider, from which it has inherited its architecture and powertrain. The SP-8 represents the most exclusive tier of road-going products offered to Ferrari’s most valued clients, crafted around their specific requirements, embodying the very pinnacle of Prancing Horse customization—a nod to the coachbuilding spirit of the ’30s to the ’50s.

In the past, Ferrari has done numerous special one-off oddities for valued clients such as the Sultan of Brunei. Remember the front-engined V12 456 GT in four-door estate body style?

It wasn’t just a cut-and-shut job. Because of significant changes to the basic architecture, the SP-8 underwent significant time on Ferrari’s wind tunnel to ensure stable aerodynamics, decent NVH, and minimal wind buffeting inside the cabin at speed.

The two-tone color scheme is subtle and low-key. PHOTO FROM FERRARI

The SP-8’s main styling theme is that its two main sections cross over and fuse into one another: The unpainted carbon-fiber front wraps around to the tail, creating a two-tone contrasting effect.

Losing the retractable hard top allowed the designers to restyle the tail section for better aerodynamics, and the large side intakes visually flow toward the powerful 3.9-liter twin-turbo V8 engine mounted in the middle. An upper vent for the engine compartment feeds more cooling air with longitudinal elements that reference the lateral strakes typical of Ferraris of the past.

The taillights are lifted from the Ferrari Roma. PHOTO FROM FERRARI

The front is dominated by an imposing full-width, cast-aluminum grille made from a single, 3D-printed mold. The grille features the same strake theme with the spacing in plain view gradually widening toward the flanks to better channel airflow to the two front radiators.

Further changes include the headlights, which have special masks and lenses and matching rear lights derived from those of the front-engined Roma. The car has specific lenses, windscreen, exhaust tailpipes that were given the same treatment as the 296 GTB’s, and specially designed retro-looking wheels in a dedicated color.

The yellow accents break the monotony of the interior. PHOTO FROM FERRARI

Inside are seats wrapped in laser-etched navy-blue Alcantara coupled with gradient-effect cloth, and carpets in specific twill fabric with an iridescent effect.

The trademark matte Argento Micalizzato hue was created especially for the SP-8, and it pairs brilliantly with the car’s carbon-fiber section. Even the Blu Scuro Stellato color used to link the two bodywork sections was specifically developed for this endeavor.

Interested to see the SP-8 in the metal? It will be displayed at the Ferrari Museum in Maranello from November 16 until March 2024 before it goes to its owner.

Botchi Santos

Botchi is your friendly, walking car encyclopedia. He loves helping people choose the right vehicle for themselves as much as he enjoys picking the right one for himself. Expect him to write about car culture, test drives and car-shopping advice. His regular column is called ‘Car Life’.