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FrontRunners: Open Season

Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s aphorism "Less is more" certainly applies to the Ferrari 458 Spider (www.ferrari.com), which is scheduled to arrive in North America early next year. The Spider has everything that makes the 458 Italia the darling of the sports-car set, except for a fixed roof—and it is better for it. Instead, the Spider has a retractable hard (not soft) top, making it the first such drop-top mid-engine sports car to offer both berlinetta and spider profiles. The Spider is equipped with the same 4.5-liter V-8 and uncompromising dual-clutch F1 paddle-shift transmission as the Italia, but Ferrari’s engineers have tuned the exhaust so that drivers and passengers can fully exploit the aural joys of open-top motoring. Ferrari has not announced the price of the Spider.

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