Ferrari 360 Spider Origins
The Ferrari 360 Spider is the convertible edition of the Ferrari 360 Modena. Released in 2000, a year after the Modena's debut, it is the 20th convertible from Ferrari's stable. Like its hardtop sibling, the Ferrari 360 Spider touts an aggressive, yet timeless and beautiful design.
The same 3.6-liter V-8 engine powers the Ferrari 360 Spider and the 360 Modena. The 360 Spider has been a classic since its release, due to its fluid, aerodynamic design.About the Ferrari 360 Spider
The Ferrari 360 Spider is known for being the first mid-engine convertible model from the carmaker. Previous convertibles from Ferrari used a removable targa roof panel, but the Ferrari 360 Spider has a fabric top that can be folded down in 20 seconds. In its open-top form, the hood of the car is hidden from view under the rear deck, with two "speed bumps" that conceal the hoops. As a result, the Ferrari 360 Spider boasts a more open cockpit when compared to previous Ferrari convertibles.
Another aspect of the Ferrari 360 Spider—its hood-folding system—gains wide praise. The two-stage folding action is considered by many to be a "20-second mechanical symphony." Even more stunning, the hood folds away inside the engine bay despite the presence of the mid-mounted engine.Ferrari 360 Spider Features
The inner specifications of the Ferrari 360 Spider are similar to those of the Modena. On the outside, however, Ferrari engineers worked out a new foundation that gives the Spider greater flex and torsional rigidity. The sills are strengthened, the windshield frame redesigned, and the front part of the floor pan stiffened. The rear bulkhead is stiffened to cut down on the engine noise that reaches the cabin. The rigidity of the 360 Modena is translated to the Spider by providing it with additional reinforcements, as well as a cross-brace in front of the engine. The Ferrari 360 Spider also provides greater passenger safety features—such as roll bars and a stronger windshield frame—than the Modena.
Like the Ferrari 360 Modena, the Spider is designed with an all-aluminum frame. In spite of the added components for the roof, the complete use of aluminum makes it only 130 pounds lighter than the coupe version.
The Ferrari 360 Spider looks very aggressive with its hood up. However, the look of the car changes completely when the hood is lowered. From the side, the Ferrari 360 Spider looks a lot like a sports car because of its steep windshield, twin roll bars, and rear engine bay design. Under the clear-glass hood, the Ferrari 360 Spider features the same 3.6-liter V-8 engine as the Modena. It is, however, more confined compared to the Modena, which cuts down its air supply. Larger side grills compensate for this. The manifolds of the V-8 are closer together between the air supply conduits, as compared to the Modena, which has its intakes more spaced out.
The performance of the Ferrari 360 Spider is very similar to that of the coupe version. It has a power to weight ratio of 0.9 lbs/bhp. It can deliver 400 bhp of power at 8500 rpm, as well as a torque of 275 lb-ft at 4750 rpm. The Spider clocks zero to 62 mph in 4.4 seconds. The 2004 Ferrari 360 Spider also features the choice of either a six-speed manual transmission or a F1-style, electro-hydraulic, manual transmission with a paddle shift. The Spider reaches a top speed of 180 mph, like the Modena, and it also has the option of a Tubi Style performance exhaust system. This new system gives an additional boost to its horsepower and also makes the car sound louder.
The interior of the Ferrari 360 Spider is the same as that of the Modena. The large wheelbase of 2600 mm gives the Spider ample space compared to the smaller F355. The leather-clad seats hug the passenger and driver to provide better support. Storage also shows improvement from the Ferrari 355.Ferrari 360 Spider Evolution
The first version of the Ferrari 360 Spider began production in 2001. The car debuted at the Geneva Motor Show in 2000, where it caught the world's attention. Not many coupes are successfully translated into convertibles, but the Ferrari 360 Spider manages it. From its first production year to its final shut down, in the year 2004, the Ferrari 360 Spider remained unchanged.