The 488 GTB name marks a return to the classic Ferrari model designation with the 488 in its moniker indicating the engine’s unitary displacement, while the GTB stands for Gran Turismo Berlinetta. The new car not only delivers unparalleled performance, it also makes that extreme power exploitable and controllable to an unprecedented level even by less expert drivers. The first 488 to be introduced was the 488 GTB 2-seat berlinetta, successor to the 458 Italia. It was launched on 3 February 2015, in advance of its world première at the March 2015 Geneva Motor Show.
Ferrari 488 GTB has a weight to power ratio of 2.2 kg (4.85 lb) per horsepower.The body of the 488 has been designed to increase downforce by 50% over the 458 while reducing aerodynamic drag. A new front double splitter serves two functions: increasing radiator cooling by forcing air into them and also channeling the air over the underbody vortex generators to create ground effect without adding unwanted drag. A newly designed blown rear spoiler (actually a slotted flap) integrated into the rear decklid and bumper increases downforce without requiring a raised wing. The central “Aero Pillar” deflects air under the flat body of the car while two vents in the bonnet provide an exit for air from the dual intakes of the front bumper, further reducing air pressure over the front of the car.
Underbody vortex generators work to reduce air pressure beneath the car thereby increasing overall downforce. A larger rear diffuser works to increase the velocity of air exiting the underbody to further lower air pressure, in conjunction with active aerodynamic variable flaps that both reduce drag and increase downforce as controlled by a microprocessor. The increased size of the diffuser over the previous 458 requires the twin exhausts of the 488 to be positioned higher in the rear bumper for clearance. The scalloped side air intakes are a homage to those found on the 308 GTB, and are divided by a central partition. Even the doorhandles – dubbed ‘shark fins’ – are shaped in a way which improves airflow by cleaning and funneling air into the large intakes above the rear wheels.
The Ferrari 488 was designed by Flavio Manzoni and won the Red Dot “Best of the Best” awards for Product Design in 2016.