Skip advert
Advertisement
In-depth reviews

Ferrari 458 Spider convertible (2012-2016)

"The Ferrari 458 Spider is the brand's fastest-ever convertible, capable of 198mph."

Carbuyer Rating

2.5 out of 5

Owners Rating
Be the first to review

Pros

  • Glorious engine noise
  • Stunning performance
  • Incredible looks and design

Cons

  • Hefty price tag
  • Steep running costs
  • Limited luggage space

The Ferrari 458 Spider is the latest in a long line of exclusive convertible sports cars created by the legendary Italian manufacturer. It uses the same high-revving 562bhp 4.5-litre V8 engine as the sensational 458 Italia coupe and hurtles from 0-62mph in just 3.4 seconds before reaching an incredible top speed of 198mph. The two-part aluminium roof folds in only 14 seconds, slotting beneath a panel that rises up ahead of the engine cover.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Inside, the Spider features the same Formula One-inspired steering wheel and high-class cabin as the coupe, while the glass rear screen doubles as a windbreak to keep buffeting to a minimum. The seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox shifts in the blink of an eye, while the standard ceramic brakes deliver astonishing stopping power.

Outside, the Spider looks every bit as stunning as the coupe. The bulges in the snug-fitting roof blend into sharp buttresses, while the 458 looks even more glamorous with the roof down.

MPG, running costs & CO2

Free servicing for the first seven years

The 458 Spider can be specified with an optional HELE (High Emotion Low Emission) stop-start system for £980. This drops CO2 emissions from 307g/km to 275g/km and improves fuel consumption. Your annual tax will still cost £505, although the service interval is a fairly normal 12,500 miles or 12 months and all servicing is free for the first seven years. All Ferrari owners also get a four-year warranty.

Engines, drive & performance

Driving the 458 Spider is a very memorable experience

It isn't just the attraction of open-air motoring that makes the 458 Spider such a tantalising prospect. Body strengthening makes it 50kg heavier than the coupe, but it feels every bit as fast, while impressive rigidity means it corners with the same agility and responsiveness.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

More reviews

There's huge grip and loads of feel through the controls, while you can tailor the accelerator response, gearshift and suspension settings to your taste using the 'manettino' dial on the steering wheel. Plus, with the roof folded down, the sensational V8 engine sounds even more glorious.

Interior & comfort

Suprisingly comfortable for a sports car

A large percentage of Ferrari 458 Spider customers use their car every day (far more than the 458 Italia coupe). So it’s a good job the Spider is more comfortable than most supercars. Adaptive dampers deliver a surprisingly compliant ride, while the clever glass rear screen keeps cabin buffeting to a minimum. A fantastic driving position, plus supportive and comfortable seats are other big plus points.

Practicality & boot space

The roof folds away neatly in 14 seconds

Practicality isn't a big priority in open-topped supercars, but Ferrari has made sure the 458 Spider is somewhat useable from day to day. There's a small but deep boot in the nose and a useful luggage shelf behind the rear seats. This is actually bigger than in the coupe's, and Ferrari sells custom-made luggage kits to fit both areas. A smartly laid-out cabin and easy-to-use stereo and heater controls complete the experience, and better still, the fully automatic roof folds in just 14 seconds at the touch of a button.

Reliability & safety

Build quality is extremely high

The 458 Italia has been a huge hit and its robust build quality and Formula One-inspired technology mean it feels like an exceptionally well engineered machine. The Spider is no different and its roof mechanism is beautifully designed. Only very rough road surfaces cause the body to flex, and even then the effect is negligible. Solid and beautifully finished, the 458 Spider features side airbags for crash safety, while a clever differential and adjustable electronic stability control ensure it feels reassuring in all conditions.

Price, value for money & options

Endless scope for personalisation

The 458 Spider is a very expensive car, but with an 18-month waiting list, it's clearly worth every penny to those lucky enough to afford one. The Spider costs £25,675 more than the Italia coupe, but still accounts for 60% of all UK 458 sales. There's a huge range of personalisation options and most customers specify several thousand pounds' worth of bespoke trim, alloy wheels and details. The ceramic brakes, dual-clutch transmission and adaptive dampers are all standard, though.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Most Popular

Engine management light: what to do if it comes on
Engine warning light
Tips and advice
12 Jun 2024

Engine management light: what to do if it comes on

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers
Carbuyer best new car deals hero
Deals
14 Jun 2024

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers

Dacia Duster crowned UK’s best car to own in Driver Power survey
Dacia Duster front quarter
News
12 Jun 2024

Dacia Duster crowned UK’s best car to own in Driver Power survey

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
26 Mar 2024

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Public EV charge point
Tips and advice
11 Jan 2023

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Tips and advice
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
21 Mar 2024

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors

Top 10 best electric cars 2024
Best electric cars
Best cars
16 May 2024

Top 10 best electric cars 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024
The best cheap-to-run cars 2023
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024
Fastest hot hatchbacks hero
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024