The one I’m driving has more options than a Greek diner, raising the price to $284,221, equivalent to the cost of 15 Honda (7267) Civics. Still, the California is the easiest Ferrari to live with. It traverses regular curbs and has two back seats. By comparison, the front end of the 458 is so low that you live in constant fear of scraping it. The car owns you as much as you own it.
You can no longer buy a Ferrari with a stick shift. Leave the California’s seven-speed double-clutch transmission in automatic and it purrs through gears sweetly. The 458’s breath catches every time it changes a gear in automatic mode.
Left, the Ferrari California. This front-engine updated convertible is also known as the California 30, for losing 30 kilograms of weight while gaining 30 more horsepower.