Ferrari Portofino M: updated drop-top GT revealed

Published: 16 September 2020

► New Ferrari Portofino M
► 612bhp V8, new auto’ box
► Plus a couple of Ferrari GT firsts

Ferrari has refreshed the Portofino just two years into its life with the new Portofino M – the first new car to come out of Maranello after the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

The ‘M’ in the new name stands for ‘modificata’ in this case, to highlight the changes made to Ferrari’s convertible grand tourer.

The biggest details are under the skin, with the 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8’s power being boosted to 612bhp (up from 592bhp) and 561lb ft. While that gentle boost in power is always welcome, the car itself sprints no faster – Ferrari says the Portofino M can hit 62mph in a very precise 3.45 seconds and on to ‘more than’ 198mph which, again, is the same as the pre-update Portofino.

Portofino M rear

Ferrari has added an extra gear to the dual-clutch auto, so there are eight forward gears to play with instead of seven. The revised gearbox is 20 per cent smaller clutch and the brand says it can deliver 35 per cent more torque. Maranello also says this is the first eight-speeder to be fitted to one of its GT cars. Michael Leiters, Ferrari’s chief technical officer, says this gearbox will be rolled out in other cars in future.

A new five-switch Manettino dial – like that on the Roma – features on the steering wheel, with Maranello’s ‘dynamic enhancer’ (less chuckling in the back, please) technology applying itself in Race mode.

Ferrari’s Dynamic Enhancer: does it work?

As for the design, it’s best described as a light touch in terms of the changes made. Ferrari says tech like advanced driver assistance aids (adaptive cruise, rear cross traffic alert, lane keeping and traffic sign recognition to name a few) and ventilated seats join the options list.

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By Jake Groves

CAR's deputy news editor, office Geordie, gamer, lover of hot hatches