In today's automotive market, the need for convertible cars persists as they offer a unique blend of freedom, style, and connection to the road when driving with the top down. Also, the versatility in the driving experience you get in convertibles is unattainable in coupes. The best part is that most convertibles maintain the drama, performance, and driving characteristics of their coupe counterparts. The Ferrari 296 GTS is a prime illustration as even with its hardtop, it upholds exceptional performance, precision, agility, and handling, among other characteristics found in the Ferrari 296 GTB. Ferrari unveiled the 296 GTS (Gran Turismo Spider) in 2022, a year after the Ferrari 296 GTB, still with a hybrid powertrain making 819 horsepower sent to the rear wheels. The Ferrari 296 GTS exhibits unapparelled performance metrics with acceleration, top speed, handling capabilities, and overall driving dynamics that are almost similar to the 296 GTB. With the top down, there's only a change in the 0-60mph time, but it's not enough to classify the Ferrari 296 GTS as a lesser car. It retains the same visual appearance found in the 296 GTB coupe, resulting from designers minimizing the impact of any modifications of the exterior bodywork. This also keeps the coupe's aerodynamic characteristics vital for the car's driving dynamics. Ferrari will ask $371,139 from you for a base model 2023 Ferrari 296 GTS, providing an entry point into the range of customization options that will add extra charges that might shock you. Nonetheless, the options are a worthwhile investment for a personalized ownership and driving experience. Ferrari 206 GTS prices average $100,000 to $200,000 more than the recommended manufacturer MSRP in the used exotic car market.
It's a culture not only for Ferrari but also for other manufacturers to offer convertible versions of their supercars and sports cars. Ferrari announced the Ferrari 296 GTS as a Spider alternative to the 296 GTB unveiled a year before, and some buyers were already regretting buying the GTB. The reason behind their regret is that the Ferrari 296 GTS offers everything the GTB has but with the enhanced driving experience of an open roof. At its core, the Ferrari 296 GTS boasts a precision-engineered hybrid powertrain similar to that of the 296 GTB. Ferrari was one of the Formula 1 teams, alongside BMW, McLaren, and Renault, that adopted the kinetic energy recovery system (KERS) when introduced to Formula 1 cars in 2009. That year, Kimi Raikkonen won the Grand Prix in the Ferrari F60, giving Ferrari their first victory, which shows how good KERS was combined with Ferrari's engineering. Ferrari went on to use the KERS hybrid Technology in the LaFerrari later in 2013, and McLaren did the same with the McLaren P1, forming the holy trinity of Hybrid cars together with the Porsche 918. It took a while, but after eight years, Ferrari reinvented the KERS hybrid system, adding plug-in hybrid capabilities and giving rise to the SF90 Stradale, then the 296 GTB, which the Ferrari 296 GTS, the focal point of this article is based on. Like most current Ferraris, the Ferrari 296 GTS is made at Ferrari's plant nested in Maranello, Italy, instilling the car with a sense of authenticity and heritage deeply rooted in the brand's history. The plant stands as the epitome of automotive craftsmanship and showcases the essence of Ferrari's legacy as it has produced some of the finest pieces of automotive history.
Behind the Ferrari 296 GTS cabin, you get the same hybrid powertrain as the 296 GTB, featuring a record-breaking 3.0-liter V6 with 666 horsepower and a 165-horsepower electric motor delivering 831 horsepower to the rear wheels. Before we get to other performance figures, the 3.0-liter V6 is a first in modern Ferraris, and despite being small, it delivers relentless power throughout the Ferrari 296 GTS' powerband that stretches up to 8,500 RPM. Its high revving nature is mainly due to its smaller displacement and V angle of 120°, a greater degree than most Ferrari V8s and V12s have. Mated to the engine is an 8-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission that bridges power delivery between the engine and the rear wheels. Also, there's an e-differential first used on the Ferrari SF90. Compared to a mechanical differential, the e-diff, such as the one on the Ferrari 296 GTS, enhances handling as it has a quicker response, is lighter, and integrates electronic stability control and traction control. 0 to 60 mph in the Ferrari 296 GTS takes 2.8 seconds, losing only four-tenths compared to the 296 GTB's 0 to 60mph 2.4 seconds. However, the top speed remains unchanged at 205 mph, which we believe can be higher since it has been proven that the Ferrari 296 GTB can do more than 205 mph flat out. Does the Ferrari 296 GTS weigh a lot compared to the 296 GTB? Ferrari had to use chassis bracings for extra rigidity and strength, but it only added 154 pounds, bringing the 296 GTS weight to 3,408 pounds. However, the extra weight does not affect fuel economy as Ferrari promises 47mpg in the Ferrari 296 GTS, which is precisely similar to what the GTB does on engine and electric motor power.
It's only been slightly over a year since Ferrari started making the Ferrari 296 GTS, so 2023 sees no changes for the Maranello-built supercar. Customers who have already received their allocations state that it delivers exceptional performance, comfort, and an unbeatable driving experience enhanced by the retractable hard top aligning with Ferrari's claims and promises.
Like the Ferrari 296 GTB's interior, the interior of the Ferrari 296 GTS was designed and built on a new concept of an entirely digital interface. The driver gets a 12-inch instrument cluster concealed from distractions by twin buttresses. Controls to the onboard navigation and the infotainment system are ergonomically housed on the steering wheel within easy reach of the driver's fingertips. The passenger only gets a small display on their side of the dashboard, but despite its size, it provides access to the infotainment system and displays a set of vehicle data as the driver chooses. Ferrari kept everything minimalistic in other aspects of the interior, providing a calm experience. All five seat options offered come with black leather and can be optioned in a plethora of colors. The minimalism extends to the center console, which comes with a matching leather color displaying uniformity, unlike most cars with contrasting between the center console and seats, which some drivers struggle with. To minimize weight and improve aesthetics and ambiance, half of the center console is made out of carbon fiber, as are the door cards and steering wheel. Finishing it off in true Ferrari fashion, the Ferrari 296 GTS has some subtle chrome bits, such as the midpiece on the center console, door handles, and the plaque behind the seats.
The Ferrari 296 GTS' exterior showcases a refined design with a harmonious blend of elegance, slight aggression, and, most importantly, functionality. At the front, you get a sharp, voluptuous, and aerodynamic bumper, which the grille takes a significant part of, and it's designed that way to provide maximum airflow to the radiators. A closer look at the teardrop-inspired headlights with daytime running capabilities will reveal a smaller air vent on each headlight that sends air to the brakes to enhance cooling. But if the radiators are at the front, what do the vents on the rear quarter panels do on the Ferrari 296 GTS? Being a high-performance hybrid car, the Ferrari 296 GTS has extra radiators to cool the hybrid system. There are two vents just below the side sections of the retractable spoiler, allowing hot air to flow from the engine bay. Cool air then comes in through the vents on the rear quarter panel, a simple yet effective cooling solution. On the subject of the spoiler, at low speeds, it retracts flush into the body and raises at higher speeds, working with the rear diffuser to reduce air pressure at the rear, thus improving aerodynamics and reducing drag.
In contemporary times, a good infotainment system is a pivotal component in a car, and the Ferrari 296 GTS has one of the best but slightly different supercar infotainment systems. You don't get a central infotainment display like in most cars. Instead, the instrument cluster and the passenger display give the driver access to the infotainment system, which consists of a six-speaker audio system. Some sources state that the cabin has 12 speakers, but we gauge that those are an added option even though Ferrari doesn't provide any speaker upgrade options on the Ferrari 296 GTS configurator. As standard, you get the infotainment system with Bluetooth streaming audio, Apple Car Play, navigation, and a dual-channel radio, but no Android Auto. The Ferrari 296 GTS is not only made with the standard technology and comfort features you'd find in a 296 GTB, but it also has features that enhance in-cabin comfort when the retractable hard top is down. Aerodynamic flaps have been integrated into the rear trim structure at the car's rear, reducing wind buffeting when driving with the top down. Additionally, a retractable window behind the seats can be lowered or raised depending on how you want to keep the interior. With the window down, you get a more immersive driving experience, enjoying exhaust notes with every gear shift, and when it's up, the interior is just as quiet as it would be with the top up. Regarding the roof, it can be operated at speeds of up to 28 mph and has an operating time of 14 seconds. It might not be the fastest functioning roof, but its design is advantageous towards keeping the engine position in the Ferrari 296 GTS unchanged from the 296 GB. Also, it folds into two so it doesn't take up much space in the engine bay, keeping air circulation at optimum levels to cool the hybrid powertrain.
It's without question that the Ferrari 296 is not cheap, but its $371,139 is in line with industry prices, and for what the car offers, there's nothing else comparable at its price point. It's a high-performance hybrid engineering marvel that will astonish anyone who dares say that supercars should be solely powered by 8, 12, or even 16-cylinder engines. Ferrari also offers innumerable customizations, allowing buyers to tailor the car to their individual preferences, potentially impacting the final cost. Interested in a Ferrari 296 GTS? We've got you covered here at Exotic Car Trader. Our platform has a host of Ferrari 296 GTSs for sale, and if there's none or you can't find any that matches your taste, regularly check back as we update our Ferrari listings frequently.
The Ferrari 296 GTS is a testament to the Ferraris's commitment to electrification. Mirroring the powertrain of the 296 GTB, it has no compromise despite adding on a few extra pounds due to the chassis bracing made necessary by the retractable hard top and vital for the car's handling, performance, and safety. If you're looking for a car offering an unparalleled open-top driving experience that seamlessly integrates performance and comfort, why shouldn't you get a Ferrari 296 GTS?
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If you're in the market for a vehicle that promises an unmatched open-top driving experience, blending exhilarating performance with luxurious comfort, the Ferrari 296 GTS emerges as an irresistible choice.
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