Parkers overall rating: 4.7 out of 5 4.7

Driver and passenger airbags make up the main of Ferrari 458 Italia safety, though in actual fact it’s the raft of systems that help the Ferrari avoid an accident in the first place that are the most important.

There’s no adaptive cruise control, emergency city stop, blind spot alert or lane departure warning, but carbon ceramic brake discs are standard so stopping distances are typically short – the 458 Italia manages to pull up from 62mph to rest in 32.5 metres. Choose the lighter Speciale and that distance drops to just 31 metres over the same distance, while both will repeat the spectacle multiple times without a loss of performance. A Pre-Fill system activates the pistons within the calipers which effectively primes the brakes as soon as the driver lifts off the throttle, thereby improving response times.

And before you even need to stamp on the brakes the Ferrari 458 Italia and 458 Speciale do their best to take care of you with their electronic stability control settings. If the weather is looking anything other than fine, then ‘Wet’ mode – selected from the rotary Manettino switch on the steering wheel - relaxes the throttle response and lessens the chance of wheel slip under acceleration and cornering.

Through ‘Sport’ and ‘Race’ this gradually lengthens the intervention point of the system, with ‘CT off’ and ‘ESC Off’ removing traction control and stability control intervention respectively. The latter two modes are best reserved for a private race circuit rather than the public road, though.

As the Ferrari 458 Italia, and especially the 458 Speciale, is produced in such low numbers, it hasn’t been and nor will it be sent to EuroNCAP for independent testing.

For those concerned about Ferrari 458 Italia practicality, it would certainly make sense to stick with the standard car. And that’s because, should you select a Speciale you’ll find a cabin that loses some of the Italia’s extra storage spaces, such as a glovebox. Or meaningful door pockets. There are nets on the carbon covered door cards, but they’re not much larger than the average Ferrari owners’ wallet.

At least there is a small storage ledge behind the race seats, complete with nets, which actually offers decent – if not overly convenient – in-cabin storage.

Regardless of which you choose the front boot is officially 168 litres in size. The good news is it feels slightly larger than that otherwise miserly figure, with a floor right at the bottom of the car and an area that actually sits as far towards the front of the car (and under the leading edge of the bonnet) as physically possible.

Certainly, no matter which model Ferrari 458 you choose, there’s enough luggage space for a long weekend away. And of course, Ferrari will sell you bespoke tailored luggage to perfectly fill the space if you’d rather not deal with non-descript soft bags.

And though the Speciale feels somewhat like a stripped-out road car for the circuit, both cars offer plenty of interior space, and despite their sleek silhouette are flooded with light from the windows. It’s worth adding the suspension lift system, which costs £2,895 on the Italia and £3,552 on the Speciale, if you’re regularly going to have to deal with large speedbumps, steep drives or particularly rutted/bumpy roads.

Basic equipment

The basic equipment list includes equipment that is standard across all versions of the Ferrari 458 (10-16).

  • ABS
  • Air conditioning
  • Alarm
  • Alloy wheels
  • Driver`s airbag
  • Metallic Paint
  • Passenger`s airbag
  • Side airbags
  • Traction control

Equipment by trim level

To view equipment options for a specific trim level, please select from the following list:

Equipment included on some trim levels
  • Audio remote
  • Body coloured bumpers
  • Electric mirrors
  • Front electric windows
  • Heated mirrors
  • Heated seats
  • Height adjustable drivers seat
  • Leather seat trim
  • Lumbar support
  • PAS
  • Remote locking
  • Steering wheel rake adjustment
  • Steering wheel reach adjustment

Italia equipment

Italia standard equipment
  • Audio remote
  • Body coloured bumpers
  • Electric mirrors
  • Front electric windows
  • Heated mirrors
  • Heated seats
  • Leather seat trim
  • Lumbar support
  • PAS
  • Remote locking
  • Steering wheel rake adjustment
  • Steering wheel reach adjustment
Italia optional equipment
None available

Speciale equipment

Speciale standard equipment
  • Height adjustable drivers seat
Speciale optional equipment
  • Audio remote
  • Body coloured bumpers
  • Electric mirrors
  • Front electric windows
  • Heated mirrors
  • Heated seats
  • Leather seat trim
  • Lumbar support
  • PAS
  • Remote locking
  • Steering wheel rake adjustment
  • Steering wheel reach adjustment