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Brand New Ferrari California

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Mike Stevens | Feb 16, 2012

The California may be Ferrari's entry-level offering, but it wouldn't be a true Ferrari if it didn't stay at the top of its game.

For 2012, the Prancing Horse has blessed its convertible with more power, less weight and a new handling package: the perfect formula.

Motivation is provided by the same 4.3 litre V8 , but Ferrari has wrung an extra 22kW out of the direct-injected engine, boosting output to 365kW. Torque is also up, climbing from 485 to 505Nm.

Those are pleasing enough numbers by any measure, but with a further 30kg cut from its kerb weight, the California becomes an even more appealing option.

With power up and weight down, there's also a slight improvement in the acceleration stakes: Ferrari claims a 0-100km/h time of 3.8 seconds with the DCT transmission, making for a 0.2 second improvement.

A new "Handling Speciale" package will also be offered in 2012. Among its features are stiffer springs and a 10 percent-faster steering ratio for small inputs.

There is also a new magneto-rheological damper control system with an ECU tune that Ferrari says will improve response time by up to 50 percent.

Little has changed on the styling front (and nor should it), although there's a new chrome treatment to the grille, along with a range of new retro-inspired two-tone colour schemes.

 

Australia

Speaking with TMR today, Ferrari Australia spokesperson Edward Rowe confirmed that the California HS will hit Australian showrooms toward the end of this year.

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