God rest ye, merry gentlemen and women. Let nothing you dismay, particularly when it comes to that vowel-choking mouthful of a name: GTC4Lusso T.
Dizzying nomenclature aside, an abundance of creature comfort and joyful performance abound in this latest exotic GT (grand touring) offering from the iconic Prancing Reindeer — oops, Horse — of Maranello, Italy.
The rear-wheel-drive, V8-powered T is actually a variant of the new all-wheel-drive V12 GTC4Lusso, introduced last February to replace the 5-year-old FF. But Ferrari’s engineering elves stress that the Lusso T is not, repeat NOT, simply a toned-down version; rather, it’s a completely different car that sits alongside the Lusso as a companion offering.
They’ve got a point that’s as bright as the star over Rockefeller Center’s tree. The T’s stellar twin-turbo 3.9 liter V8 engine evolved from the 488 GTB’s power plant, which was named “2016 International Engine of the Year” by Engine Technology International magazine. The T’s V8 is also about 110 pounds lighter than the Lusso’s naturally aspirated 6.3 liter V12, thanks to ditching four cylinders and the all-wheel-drive system. The T also uses a different air intake system, pistons and connecting rods and a new intercooler and exhaust system.
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Speaking of exhaust, there’s no silent night when a Ferrari is nearby. That unmistakable symphony is a big part of the mystique, and the T’s V8 definitely sounds Ferrari-esque. Perhaps not the V12’s thundering clatter to roust your neighbors from their long winter’s nap, but enough crackling and booming to shimmy their eggnog.
All that racket means there’s a lot more power than a one-horse open sleigh. The T’s V8 cranks out 601 hp and 561 pound-feet of torque, compared to 680 hp and 514 pound-feet for the V12. Yes, you read that right: Thanks to turbocharging, the V8 has more torque than the V12. The T is good for sprints from 0-62 in 3.5 seconds, just an eyelash less than the Lusso. Top speed is a breathtaking 200 mph. Laughing all the way, indeed.
Mileage is pretty good, too: The T delivers about 24 mpg. Not that anyone shelling out Ferrari money — an estimated $260,000 for the Lusso T — really cares about that sort of thing. Other than Scrooge, and he’s not really Ferrari material.
The T also features Variable Boost Management software that adjusts torque delivery to the 7-speed dual clutch transmission, providing longer gear ratios for silky-smooth, razor-sharp, neck-cracking power.
The little Manettino dial on the steering wheel, a Ferrari racing icon, provides five dynamic control settings — Ice, Wet, Comfort, Sport and ECS OFF. (ESC OFF disconnects all the electronic safety technology, except for airbags and ABS. Not for the faint of heart.) The settings split torque between the two rear wheels to better control slip on mixed surfaces. All that, plus the four-wheel steering, means that the T can traverse just about any surface with aplomb.
The interior boasts acres of beautifully stitched premium leather, supportive yet ridiculously comfortable seats and a 10.3-inch infotainment screen with capacitive-touch controls. The cabin is designed so that passengers (the ones in front, at least) feel like they’re part of the Ferrari driving experience. Those in back can enjoy the show in somewhat tight quarters, but thanks to clever ergonomics and deep seats, there’s room for all the toys for all the good girls and boys.
The Lusso T comes to market in early 2017. But if you’ve a hankering for this four-seat brood-hauler and think you’ll just saunter down to the dealership and buy one off the lot, think again. The waiting list is already 12 months long and will undoubtedly grow.
Then again, you can hang those stockings with care in hopes that St. Nick, or some other equally well-heeled benefactor, will park a brand-new, shiny Rudolph Rosso (Ferrari-speak for red) GTC4Lusso T under your tree. Might be tough jamming it down the chimney though, so leave milk and cookies in the driveway. What have you got to lose?
6300 International Parkway, Plano, 972-447-5200, www.boardwalkferrari.com.