Ferrari F355 Berlinetta Origins
Ferrari introduced the F355 Berlinetta in May 1994 as the first model in its F355 series. Other cars in this series include the F355 Spider, a convertible version of the Berlinetta; the F355 GTS, a targa-top version; and the F355 Challenge, which provides the race-ready version of the Berlinetta. All three versions of the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta were released in 1995.
The Ferrari F355 Berlinetta remained in production for five years after its introduction to the market. During this period, Ferrari manufactured 4,871 Berlinetta models, of which 3,829 had a six-speed manual transmission, while the remaining 1,042 had F1-transmission systems.About the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta
The F355 Berlinetta was considered one of the most important cars manufactured by Ferrari. For many people, the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta marked the end of an era of Ferraris that was succeeded by the 360 Modena, 430 Scuderia, and 458 Italia. However, the fact remains that the F355 Berlinetta was unique in its own right and influences its successors in many ways.
The F348 preceded the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta. Many considered this model a technological dead end. By the time the production of the F348 halted, the image of Ferrari as a high-tech luxury car manufacturer had taken a beating. The car handled poorly and was completely unreliable. This served as a wakeup call to Ferrari engineers, who then used F1 technology for the F355.
The failure of the F348 pushed Ferrari to focus on improving the handling characteristics. The addition of new electronic dampers to calculate brake pressure, road speed, steering, and suspension load on the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta accomplishes this. The F355 also boasted a generous power boost thanks to its V-8 engine, with the car beating the 348 by seven seconds around the Fiorano test track.
Pininfarina created the design of the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta. This design did away with the straight lines and side strakes of the Testarossa design and adopts a smoother and more aerodynamic shape that dominates later Ferrari models. Pininfarina determined the shape of the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta with Ferrari's wind tunnel. The classic roots of this car arecemented by the addition of rear buttresses and traditionally shaped rear lights, just like the classic Ferrari 250 GTO.
In 1997, the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta marked the first road car to ever use an F1-style gearbox system. This system included two steering-wheel-mounted levers; the right lever selects a higher gear, while the left one can select a lower gear. The section of the car where the gear stick was previously located held a single lever for selecting the reverse gear. In order to start the engine, the gearshift paddles on both sides needed to be pulled back so that the transmission goes into neutral.Ferrari F355 Berlinetta Features
1999 marks the last production year for the popular F355 series. By that time, the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta created a lasting impression on the world and was widely considered to be the greatest sports cars of the 20th century. The F1-style gearbox system that used two paddles behind the steering wheel sets the F355 apart. This new transmission system allowed for extremely quick gear changes, and it offered the advantage of keeping both hands on the steering wheel at all times. This F1 gearbox utilized the same six-speed transmission system used in the previous versions of the F355.
Just like previous versions, the 3.5-liter V-8 engine powered the1999 Ferrari F355 Berlinetta. This engine had titanium rods, a 180-degree crankshaft, and five-valve cylinder heads. Fuel injection was managed by a Bosch 2.7-Motronic system, which allowed the engine to deliver 380 hp at 8500 rpm. The coupe accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 4.9 seconds and reaches a top speed of 183 mph. When the production of the Berlinetta ended in 1999, Ferrari launched a limited-edition F355 Spider model known as the Serie Fiorano. It had several performance enhancements, such as a specialized suspension system, competition brake pads, greater power and torque, and a modified grille and shield. Ferrari produced a total of 104 models.Ferrari F355 Berlinetta Evolution
With the exception of the F1 electro-hydraulic transmission, the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta went through very few changes during its production life. Therefore, the only past version of the Ferrari F355 Berlinetta was before 1997. This version of the Ferrari F355 came only with a six-speed manual transmission system.