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Fiery Ferraris: 488 GTB sales stopped, California T recall due to fire risk

Ferrari’s new era of turbocharged V8 engines is hitting a bit of a snag. After issuing a recall for the California T convertible due to a possible fire risk, Ferrari stopped sales of the new 488 GTB over concerns the new mid-engined model could be affected by the same problem.

The cause of concern is a manufacturing flaw in a fuel-system component that Ferrari believes could lead to an engine-compartment fire. A low-pressure fuel line from supplier Dytech may not be properly connected to the fuel pump’s feed line due to an “improper coating treatment.” This could cause fuel to leak from the insecure connection. Anything that could allow fuel to leak within the confines of a hot engine bay is a concern, of course.

Ferrari first discovered the problem on the California T convertible last month during what it calls a “routine pressure check” on the assembly line. A recall was issued for that model, which went on sale last year. As part of a mid-cycle refresh, the California T got Ferrari’s new twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V8, part of the company’s effort to maintain performance while paying at least some attention to fuel economy.

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Although it uses a different, 3.9-liter twin-turbo V8, Ferrari believes the 488 GTB is affected by the same component issue as the California T. But there’s no need for a recall in the U.S., because Ferrari hasn’t actually sold any 488 GTBs here yet. Instead, Ferrari issued a stop-sale order for the 116 cars allocated for the U.S. So if you were hoping to get your hands on a 488 GTB, you’re going to have to wait a bit.

The 488 GTB was unveiled earlier this year at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show as the replacement for the 458 Italia. Ferrari claims the new base model is actually faster around its test track than the 458 Speciale, the high-performance version of the 488’s predecessor. A convertible 488 Spider was unveiled back in September at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show.