The latest bespoke commission completed by Ferrari’s special projects department is the SP48 Unica, a two-seat V8 supercar that looks so good it’s a crying shame it will remain a one-off.
Created for, and with the assistance of, an unnamed and hugely rich “long-standing” customer, the SP48 Unica is based around the recently axed F8 Tributo, a car that can trace its roots to the 458 Italia launched in 2009. But the comprehensive visual transformation means you might easily guess there’s a new 296 GTB hiding underneath the sculpted panels.
The sleek new nose features headlights that more closely echo those on the Roma and 296 than the F8, including the unusual body-color lower grille again reminiscent of the one on the Roma grand tourer but works even better here. The front lid features deep vents to get rid of air drawn in through the nose, and the windshield wraps around the car, aided by the blackout A-pillars to give the impression of a giant helmet visor.
Moving to the side we can see repositioned air intakes for the side-mounted radiators, and additional intakes in the upper bodywork just behind the door glass feeding air to the intercoolers, while black sill panels cut deep into the lower bodywork to give the car a far more muscular, athletic look than the F8.
But it’s at the rear where the SP48 will really drop jaws because there’s no rear window. That means no chance to see the engine (or anything behind you) through the rearview mirror, and no chance for passers-by to peer into the engine bay from the outside, either, which is a shame. But visually, it really works, the front and rear sections of the car being tied together by a central spine that cleverly fades from dark to light.
Ferrari’s traditional quad lights are still just about present, but now form part of a horizontal LED strip running across the rear of the car located in a oval shape created between the small fixed spoiler mounted above, and its mirror image located below.
Ferrari hasn’t released any images of the interior, but glimpses of it in the accompanying video show that, and in common with most of the company’s bespoke creations, it’s little changed from the one fitted to the donor car. But Maranello says that apart from the deletion of the rear screen, the SP48 gets laser-perforated Alcantara upholstery featuring hexagonal motifs replicated from the front grille and roof, and through which underlying red-orange fabric matched to the exterior color can be seen.
There’s no mention of mechanical upgrades, which means the SP48 is almost certainly running the F8 Tributo’s standard 710 hp (720 PS) twin-turbo 3.9-liter V8. But where a factory F8 Tributo would have set you back around $277,000 before the order book close this spring, it’s likely that this Ferrari’s owner forked out around $2 million to create the SP48, and waited over a year to take delivery.