The premiere of the new, Chris Evans-led version of Top Gear was worth watching not necessarily for the show itself, but for an interesting piece of Ferrari news that slipped into the taping. Ferrari is building a convertible LaFerrari Spider, it seems. Apparently, customers ordered them three months ago, and only 150 will be made.
How do we know this? Because that’s what Gordon Ramsay told Evans during an interview on the show. Ramsay appeared with Jesse Eisenberg for the “Star in a Rallycross Car” segment, which is replacing “Star in a Reasonably Priced Car.” Discussion quickly turned to Ramsay’s LaFerrari hybrid supercar, but then Evans asked about “another, future best car” Ramsay might be taking delivery of soon.
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Ramsay then pulled a black box from underneath his seat, saying it was “from Ferrari” and that it was sent to him “about three months ago.” The box contained what looked like a red Ferrari key.
“And they’re doing a limited edition of the LaFerrari,” Ramsay continued. “So it’s the LaFerrari Spider. They made 499 [of the original LaFerrari], but they’re only making 150 of these. It begs the question of what Ramsay will do with his hardtop LaFerrari now that the convertible Spider is on the way, and why he was allowed to make this announcement on the world’s biggest car show.
Ferrari is very strict about the release of information, especially when it comes to its flagship supercars. The carmaker has an inner circle of particularly well heeled and loyal customers. They’re told about new models long before the cars are shown to the public, but only if they remain sworn to secrecy. Ferrari hand picks buyers for cars like the LaFerrari, and blabbing could get even the richest Ferrari owner kicked off the list. Will Ferrari cancel Ramsay’s order now? Or did the company let it happen? Some media outlets are already accusing Top Gear of colluding with Ferrari, and that would be a major blow to the show’s credibility if it proved true.
Evans was quick to announce that “this is the first proof we’ve heard on a TV, radio, or a magazine that this car exists,” although Ferrari has hinted at it before. Chairman Sergio Marchionne called the LaFerrari Spider “no secret” in a recent interview with Automobile, and said “potential customers have already been approached.” Still, it’s unusual for Ferrari to let important details like production numbers slip out in such an informal way.