Australian media and VIP customers were flown to Byron Bay last week for the local unveiling of the all-new Ferrari Portofino.
No expense was spared for the exclusive launch, with media transported to the recently renovated Elements of Byron Resort via Business Class flights and welcomed with in-room gifts from Ferrari, Tom Ford fragrances and La Prairie cosmetics.
Chosen as Australia’s answer to the famous town from which the Ferrari Portofino Grand Tourer takes its name, guests spent the afternoon relaxing by the pool, coconut margaritas in hand. Later, dressed in white, media gathered amongst the trees for cocktails before being whisked away to the Beach Club for a delicious dinner by the sea followed by a dramatic unveiling of the Ferrari Portofino, introduced by Ferrari Australasia CEO, Herbert Appleroth.
In the flesh, the new Ferrari Portofino is captivating, with a wide and aggressive stance and clear aerodynamic advancements over the outgoing California T. The retractable hardtop roof appears to complement the appearance of the car while up, giving the vehicle a sleek and elegant coupe-like profile, and when hidden, a sporty open-top GT.
In a first for the brand, the Ferrari Portofino features electronically-controlled by-pass valves to both tame and glorify the famous V8 engine note on the way to 100km in just 3.5 seconds. This allows for muted driving in urban areas, appealing to the everyday user, a moderately actuated version and a raw expression of the 441 kW engine, all while drivers take advantage of the Portofino’s stiffer lighter chassis, refined suspension set up and zero turbo lag.
In the shadows on the night of the launch, I wasn’t able to fully appreciate the beauty of the Ferrari Portofino cockpit, however, the cockpit’s symmetrical arrangement and the improved rear seat space are distinct improvements on the California T. I also found the Bordeaux interior against the Grey Grigio Titanio paintwork a subtle but striking combination.
Ferrari will roll out three new standalone dealerships in Sydney, Melbourne, and the Gold Coast in 2018 where the Ferrari Portofino will retail for $398,888 excluding on roads.
We look forward to reporting on its performance in the near future. Head to Ferrari for more information.