If you already have a best-selling car in your portfolio, would you rest on your laurels and keep it as it is or would you want to mess with success to try and make it even better?
Thankfully, Ferrari chose the latter as it announced the release of the Portofino M, its 2+2 GT spider that’s positioned not only as a daily drive, but also as a performance vehicle for your weekend getaways. As you might deduce from its name, this is an updated version of the best-selling, entry-level Ferrari with the ‘M’ standing for modificata or ‘modified’ referring to the significant upgrades done to this model.
The ‘M” might as well stand for majestic, as the boys in Maranello boosted the Portofino M’s performance and looks to truly deserve that moniker. First up, it now has a twin-turbo, 3.9-liter V8 engine that delivers 612hp – similar to Ferrari Roma. This delivers 20 more horses than the outgoing model and lets the Portofino M achieve 0-100 in 3.45s and top out at 320km/h.
Along with the updated V8 engine is a new eight-speed dual-clutch transmission gearbox – again similar to what you’ll find in the Roma and also the SF90 Stradale – that deliver instant throttle response and power. Coupled with the modified gear ratios, you have an engine that has more acceleration and much more responsive, resulting to a more pleasurable drive. Also new to the Portofino M is a five-position Manettino that now includes a Race mode – a first on a Ferrari GT spider – that makes it even sportier and allows it track-level performance.
The exterior of the car has also been tweaked. Though its signature side scallops remain, the Portofino M has a redesigned front bumper with a new aluminum grill and larger air intakes that makes it more aggressive. The tail is also more compact owing to a new exhaust system that removed the silencer assembly. A streamlined rear bumper integrates a new rear diffuser – available in carbon fiber – to promote better airflow and reduce drag. Finishing off the updated look are new diamond-finish 20-inch rims specifically designed for this car and inspired by its versatility.
The Portfino M also features several tech upgrades including an optional cruise control, surround-view camera system with 3D display and – for the first time ever – a choice of connectivity support for Android Auto or Apple CarPlay.
What hasn’t changed is the interior, where the Portofino M’s multi-level dashboard structure is pretty much similar to its predecessor, down to its 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen. The retractable hard-top rises or drops down in about 15 seconds. Tucked underneath is a boot that offers 10.3 cubic feet of space – generous for this class — which translates to a suitcase, a rucksack and change. What’s not generous though is the rear seating which Ferrari claims to be “genuinely usable”. It’s more usable as extra storage as average humans definitely won’t fit.