The shifting experience is mind-boggling, allowing lightning-fast changes when hard in the throttle, or more relaxed swaps when driving conservatively. The manettino(adjustment dial) offers calibration of the drive-by-wire throttle, as well as managing traction and stability controls.
When engaged, the system (integrated with the E-Diff electronically controlled differential) effectively modulates throttle input and maximizes traction, especially notable through the corners. Just point the car, nail the throttle and the system does the rest. In addition to Race and Sport settings, the recalibrated system offers settings for normal driving, as well as a new CT position that turns off traction control completely, but still maintains stability control, while the final CST position removes all electronic aids except for ABS.
As one would expect from a factory lightweight, tons of unnecessary weight was eliminated for improved power-to-weight efficiency. Where creature comforts such as carpeting, sound deadening and the audio system were simply tossed out, Maranello engineers found other weight savings via lightweight titanium suspension springs, slimmer dampers, hollow anti-roll bars, lighter wheels and feather-light titanium lug nuts. Even certain accessory brackets were re-machined for reduced weight. If an ounce or two could be saved, it was done-absolutely nothing was overlooked.
Various carbon fiber components contribute to additional weight saving, including air filter boxes, door panels, seats, mirrors, door panels and the rear wing. The tunnel and bulkhead are also carbon fiber, which further provide increased structural strength. These modifications shaved over 220 pounds from the Scuderia, which has a curb weight of 2975 pounds.
Visually, the twin-striped Scuderia looks remarkably similar to the 430, apart from redesigned front and rear fascias and rocker panels, plus a few smaller details, like the addition of front air intake grilles.
The chance to pedal the Scuderia personally around Fiorano turns bitter sweet as rain clouds move in and cover the track with water. Ferrari test driver, Marc Gene, assures me that the car's F1-Trac traction and stability control will do its job, providing high-speed straight-line stability with confidence-building cornering and braking with more grip and continuous power than one would imagine under the conditions. It's easy to accelerate up to triple-digit speeds in the straights and toss the car in and out of the turns.
Fortunately, the rain clears for my drive on the scenic, winding roads high above Maranello and through the Modena countryside. Weaving my way through the switchbacks and hairpins and hearing the raaappp, praapp, praapp of the engine as I throttle and paddle-shift away, I notice an old man hobbling along with a cane, so I slow to a crawl, only to see him raise a hand to his ear as a sign of approval.
For street use, the Scuderia is surprisingly comfortable given its ultra-rigid chassis, even along uneven and bumpy surfaces. The lightweight carbon fiber seat absorbs just enough of the pavement to allow proper feedback without excessive jarring or jolting.