I think I'm accurate in saying that none of us consider the Ferrari F430 the most brilliant or exciting car to come out of the Maranello stable. Mechanically I've heard it's both excellent but fidgity and tricky to drive. And looks-wise, ...well let's agree it 's by no means the prettiest Fezza drawn up by the Pininfarini design team. Yet without looking at any sales figures I can confidently predict that it was Ferrari's best selling car to date. On today's roads, no prancing horse is more commonly spotted than the '05-'09 430. So where's the appeal in a common Ferrari with mediocre looks?
Well for starters, it sounds terrific. You don't have to opt for the full blown ear bleeding straight piped Scuderia to enjoy a firocious burpy shriek. Any trim F430 comes equiped with exhaust valves which open up upon right foot command. Having spent some time in Monaco, I have concluded that the Ferrari's were unmatched in the intrusiveness of their exhaust note. Every time a 599, 458, 430, or the surprisingly popular California passed by, the loud accelerating burp of the exhaust put any nearby Lamborghini, Aston Martin, or 'S' trim Maserati to shame.
Unfortunately, a pretty exhaust notes alone doesn't sell cars. You may still choose to steer away from an F430 because you recall seeing 673 of them pass by the Monte Carlo Casino that one mid-August Sunday afternoon. The fact that tourists were allowed to rent red F430 Spiders for 30 minutes in exchange for a small sum of money certainly did not help it's cause. Even though the rental agancy has closed up shop, it's evident from the lack of F430's now that the 'who's who' does not want to be seen in one. The argument that it's become a victem to it's own sucess holds weight. Although when looking outisde of the world's richest cities, it's a different story altogether.
While it's upright bug-eyed front fascia is an acquired taste, it's by no means an ugly car. I dare you not to drool over it's low road squatting rear, volumptuous curves, but fine profile lines as you spot one in the wild, outside of Monaco, London, Miami or Dubai. In the wild, amongst other cars, there is no denying that it's a art. Better yet, it's functional art. It's presence is a treat to passerbyes as it'll massage massages your own inner ear canals with the drone of a sharply tuned Bella Italia V8 hard at work only inches away. Because of these wonderful features, the F430, even though it now sits in the shadow of the 458 Italia, should never be overlooked. In lightweight Scuderia trim, the F430 may go down in Ferrari history as one of their all time best, achieve cult status and forever be hoarded by collectors. But I truly hope the plain vanilla F430 does not become the current 348 poor mans Ferrari in years to come.
In case you're still undecided whether to remember or forget the F430, I invite you to watch the clip below and relish at it's beauty, elegance, and drama. Ignore the non HD quality and enjoy the mounds of passion for Ferrari in which this video has been submerged in. The opening scene may look uncanny similar to the next GTA game trailer, but the animal like burnouts and the sensual cinematography will have you hitting the replay button nearly as fast as you'll fall back in love with the main character. Forza Ferrari!