The history of a car -
the Ferrari 488 GT3

The history of a car - the Ferrari 488 GT3 01

The 488 GT3 made its début simultaneously in America and Australia three years ago, on the weekend of 17-20 March 2016, taking part in the first round of the Australian GT Championship and at the 12 Hours of Sebring. How did it go? Very well, because the supercharged coupé from Maranello came first in Melbourne thanks to drivers Andrea Montermini and Benny Simonsen. Meanwhile Alessandro Balzan, Christina Nielsen and Jeff Segal triumphed in the renowned American endurance race.

One of the distinctive features of the 488 GT3 is the relative ease of driving it, ensured by excellent aerodynamics and a powerful engine that is simultaneously “gentle” in its delivery. Its 550 horsepower, 4.0 V8 twin-turbo engine has proved very reliable over time, as has the X-Trac transversal gearbox that it is coupled with.

At the front of the GT3 is a generously-sized splitter, higher in its central part to convey flows towards the rear of the car. At the sides there are flaps to channel the air flow more efficiently at high speeds. On the roof of some GT3s is an opening that has the task of allowing the driver to exit in the event of a locked door. This solution is optional here, whereas it is obligatory on all GTEs. This additional escape route was introduced for the first time in the BMW M6 GT3 and the Corvette C7 GT3-R.

The rear diffuser is the result of new regulations, having several flow deviators with the innovation of four flaps - two each side - behind the rear tyres. The rear wing resembles that of the previous 458 Italia GT3 but in the 488 it is markedly wider, and the incidence can be adjusted depending on the aerodynamic load opted for. The exhausts have been separated, unlike in the 458 where they were combined. Another distinctive feature of this 488 GT3 is the inclusion of aggressive slits both on the wheel arches and on the openings close the door hinges, behind the front wheels. The function of these is to reduce the turbulence generated by the spinning of the tyre.

The history of a car - the Ferrari 488 GT3 02

The car, in the three racing seasons run so far, has been chosen by over 40 teams and driven by more than 230 drivers, winning a total of 43 titles. The number of victories won by the 488 GT3 has steadily increased from year to year. The 100th victory came in March 2018, thanks to Toni Vilander and Miguel Molina on the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas. Only one more calendar year was needed to double this number, when the liquid yellow car of the Car Guy team won the Buriram 4 Hours in the Asian Le Mans Series, handing victory number 200 to the GT3 from Maranello.

In the last race of the Intercontinental GT Challenge 2019, held at the Laguna Seca WeatherTech Raceway, it was the 488 GT3 of the Hub AutoCorsa team that came in first after 327 laps in the California 8 Hours Naturally on Pirelli tyres, like all the competing cars.

On April 13-14, at the Autodromo di Monza, there will be as many as seven Ferrari 488 GT3 taking part in the first round of the Blancpain GT Series. This will be in the Am, Pro-Am and Silver classes - which differentiate between the drivers in terms of their experience, their speed and their amateur or professional status. In its current form this championship has been running since 2014, and in that time Pirelli had been the exclusive tyre supplier with the P Zero DHD2.

The Blancpain GT Series is the leading European championship for GT3 category races: it has wide starting grids for the competition versions of the sportiest models from the world's most prestigious car makers.

Will the Cavallino Rampante succeed in claiming the top of the podium during the Italian round at the super-fast track at Brianza?

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