With the prices of the Ferrari F430, 360 and 355 all broadly the same, which one should you buy?
A decision like this used to be an easy one for many buyers, but add the potential for appreciation into the mix and the decision-making dynamic changes. In fact, in the £70-100,000 price bracket there is a lot of choice at the moment with good examples of the 308 and 328 also available at this price point. We asked Ferrari guru Tony Glynn of Foskers – the UK’s oldest independent Ferrari specialist – to help you choose.
Ferrari 355 (1994 – 1999)
3.5 litre V8 – 375 BHP, 0-62 mph 4.7 seconds, 0-100 mph 10.6 seconds, top speed 183 mph (claimed).
Average value £90,000 (price range £45,000 – £130,000)
Number of cars for sale UK (January 2018) – 90
The 355 was a big step up from its predecessor the 348, which was notoriously alleged to have been described by then Ferrari boss Luca Montezemolo as the worst Ferrari ever built. For many, the Pininfarina design of the 355 is one of the greats and as well as looking good the 355 sounds amazing so if you are an aesthete, this car is for you. In terms of performance, it is beginning to show it’s age – 0-60 arrives in 4.7 seconds which is half a second slower than a Porsche 718 Cayman S. It’s not all about the headline figures though – according to Tony Glynn, the 355 is a true driver’s car which really needs to be driven on track to appreciate the experience. Combine this with great looks and an unholy soundtrack, and what you have in the 355 is the very essence of a V8 Ferrari, distilled. As Aston Martin would have it – power, beauty and soul.
There was a run on 355 values in 2015-2016, but these have now cooled slightly and stabilised. A good time to buy?
Ferrari 360 (1999 – 2005)
3.6 litre V8 – 395 BHP, 0-62 mph 4.5 seconds, 0-100 mph 9.8 seconds, top speed 183 mph (claimed)
Average value £75,000 (price range £50,000 – £130,000)
Number of cars for sale UK (January 2018) – 90
Tony immediately points to the softer edge of the 360 over the 355 – definitely easier to use every day under normal driving conditions. It boasts another beautiful Pininfarina design which definitely puts it in contention for the prettiest Ferrari award and just like the 355 sounds fantastic with its signature shrill exhaust note. The cabin feels much more modern than the 355’s and if you are considering either an F1 gearbox or a spider, then the 360 wins hands down on both counts with a much improved F1 box over the 355 and a fully automatic convertible roof rather than the part-manual version on its predecessor.
360s have risen in value over the last few years but still have the potential for further increases according to Tony. NB – The Challenge Stradale is on a completely different stratosphere in terms of price.
Ferrari 430 (2004 – 2009)
4.3 litre V8 – 483 BHP, 0-62 mph 4.0 seconds, 0-100 mph 8.6 seconds, top speed 196mph (claimed)
Average value £100,000 (price range £50,000 – £175,000)
Number of cars for sale UK (January 2018) – 90 (excluding Scuderia and 16M)
The 430 represented a significant step up in terms of power, performance and technology for Ferrari’s mid-engined sports car. The difference in performance was noticeable, but the more functional and aggressive look and more guttural V8 exhaust note mean it doesn’t quite have the all-important soul of its predecessors. What it does have in spades though, is talent. With a new E-Diff, the now famous Ferrari manettino (to control the traction control and ESP) on the wheel, a muscular new engine and F1 gearbox, it took the supercar arms race to a whole new level. Without question the most capable car of the three, but potentially a little too flattering to the driver for its own good in the eyes of those who long for something a little more old-school and straightforward – like Tony Glynn of Foskers.
According to the team at Foskers all three cars are relatively robust and reliable. Our potholed British roads aren’t ideal for Italian supercars, so expect ball joints to wear relatively quickly and keep an eye on them. The 355 will require the most maintenance and the 430 has the benefit of a cam chain rather than the belt driven versions in the 355 and 360 which need regular replacement. The 355 feels more antiquated than it’s younger brothers, and that to a greater or lesser extent will be a deciding factor for many buyers, as will the soul and driving experience that the car’s age brings. Remember that all three cars offer a manual option – something no longer available on the 458/ 488 – and manual cars command a significant premium, as does low mileage.
Ferrari 355 – a classic Ferrari design, old-school, rarest of the three. Manual best.
Ferrari 430 – amazing noughties performance, F1 gearbox offers good value for money.
Ferrari 360 – good manual cars still available for sensible money. The halfway house.
As always, we recommend seeking out a Ferrari specialist and driving all three to see which one you prefer. Given the options available around the £85,000 mark, you might just be surprised….
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