Richard Dredge
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Richard Dredge

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Richard Dredge
Author

Richard Dredge

Ferrari J50

Just 10 examples of the Ferrari J50 were made, for the Japanese market only

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Ferrari in Japan, Ferrari revealed the J50 at the National Art Center in Tokyo in December 2016. Limited to just 10 units, the J50 was a two-seater, mid-engined roadster based on the 488 Spider and fitted with a 690bhp 3.9-litre V8.

Created by Ferrari’s Special Projects department and designed by the Ferrari Styling Centre team in Maranello, the bodywork was all new. The brief was to create a very low-slung roadster, encapsulating intrinsic Ferrari values of nimbleness and agility; the result was a ‘helmet visor’ effect, reminiscent of Ferrari’s open competition barchettas going back to the 1950s. Another key element was the black dividing line, an interpretation of a recurring Ferrari styling cue seen on models such as the GTO, F40 and F50.

The J50 benefited from detailed aerodynamic development which led to the radiators being positioned closer together, while the front bumper was completely redesigned and the windscreen header rail lowered, to allow greater airflow over the aero foil and rear spoiler.

The engine was framed by a transparent polycarbonate cover shaped to provide a visual extension of the two separate roll hoops protecting the heads of driver and passenger. The rear diffuser featured an extractor shape inspired by jet engine afterburners while the 20-inch forged wheels were designed and made specifically for the J50. Inside, unique trim adorned the sports seats and the carbonfibre hard targa top was divided into two pieces which stowed behind the seats.

The J50 presented at the launch in Tokyo was finished in a special shade of three-layer red with a red-over-black interior trimmed in fine leather and Alcantara. However, each of the cars were built specifically to each buyer’s requirements. Ferrari didn't revealed prices or performance figures but the J50 was sold only to long-standing customers who had spent plenty with the company.

 

Vital statistics
Produced 2017, Italy
Number built 10
Engine Mid-mounted, 3902cc, twin-turbo V8
Transmission 7-speed dual-clutch, rear-wheel drive
Power 661bhp at 8000rpm
Torque 560lb ft at 3000rpm
Top speed 205mph (Ferrari 488)
0-62mph 3.0 seconds (Ferrari 488)

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