Officially presented during the Paris Motor show in September 2004, the F430 signaled the arrival of a brand new generation of Ferrari 8-cylinder models. The biggest changes appeared in the engine bay, where the F430 sported an all-new, 4.3-liter V8 that pumped out 483 horsepower and 299 lb-ft of torque—90 hp and 68 lb-ft more than the regular 360. Also boosting the F430’s performance was a new, Formula 1-derived electronic differential and the now-ubiquitous steering wheel-mounted manettino. This rotary switch allowed the driver to select various dynamic modes, such as Wet, Sport and Race, which deliver specific combinations of shock-absorber stiffness, traction-control intervention, gearshift speeds (on F1 transmission-equipped cars) and so on. Further bolstering the car’s sporting credentials were a stiffer chassis, a faster-shifting F1 gearbox, more downforce without additional drag, and bigger wheels and tires.
Ferrari produced four versions of the F430. The first, the Berlinetta, was unveiled at the Paris Auto Show in 2004. The following year, a convertible version debuted. The only differences between Berlinetta and Spider were the latter’s power rag top, exposed roll-over bars and rear deck, which featured a glass window through which the engine was visible. In 2007, Ferrari released a more sporting variant of the Berlinetta called the 430 Scuderia. This model mimicked the earlier Challenge Stradale, with a stripped interior, a stronger engine, stiffer suspension and stickier tires, larger carbon-ceramic brakes, more aggressive bodywork that created more downforce, and less weight.