Welcome to a landmark Ferrari. Precisely 50 years on from the debut of the last Spider in the range to sport a front-mounted V12 engine, the 812 GTS hails a triumphant return.
This new vehicle is the latest in a model type that has played a pivotal role in the marque’s history since its foundation.
Ferrari’s V12 Spider story features many key models and began in 1948 with the 166 MM, an authentic thoroughbred competition GT that won the two most prestigious endurance races in the world in 1949: the Mille Miglia and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The last in that long lineage was the 1969 365 GTS4, also known as the Daytona Spider because of Ferrari’s victory in the 1967 24 Hours of Daytona.
The front-mounted V12 architecture has not been used in a Ferrari series-production Spider since the 365 GTS4. That said, four special series limited editions have been launched: the 550 Barchetta Pininfarina in 2000, the Superamerica in 2005, the SA Aperta in 2010 and, most recently, the F60 America of which just 10 were built to celebrate Ferrari’s 60th year in the American market in 2014.
Like its historic predecessors, the 812 GTS sets a new benchmark in terms of performance and exclusivity. It is not merely the most powerful production Spider on the market, but also the most versatile, thanks to its retractable hard top, a unique feature in this segment which also guarantees a larger boot capacity.
The 812 GTS is the Spider version of the 812 Superfast, from which it takes both its specifications and performance, most notably the power unit.
It manages 60mph in under three seconds and has a top speed of over 200mph.
Full pricing and specification are not published but expect a premium over the Superfast’s £262,963 price.
A Ferrari spokesman said: “The aim in developing the 812 GTS was to retain the exhilarating feeling of speed and power delivered by the Berlinetta version in terms of accelerating, response times and agility.
“The 812 GTS is equipped with all of the 812 Superfast’s new generation components and control systems and, like it, delivers impressive handling.”