Ferrari Roma versus Aston Martin Vantage – the numbers
Front-engined Ferrari sports car or front-engined Aston Martin sports car? It’s not a question that has arisen recently – until this week’s reveal of the new Ferrari Roma. The Roma is a car with Aston Martin Vantage rival written all over it.
Ferrari has now confirmed earlier published details of the car it says is designed for La Dolce Vita – the good life. So as GRR originally reported, along with its sleekly classic looks you get a three-door, two-seat body, the much-awarded 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8 with 612bhp and dynamic prowess based around a raft of new Ferrari technologies.
The hi-tech bits include the latest 6.0 version of side slip control (a first in a Ferrari GT) with five-position manettino, an active rear spoiler integrated into the screen that deploys automatically at speed to increase downforce, and the latest eight-speed automatic transmission from the SF90 Stradale.
The 620PS (612bhp) drivetrain puts the Roma alongside the convertible Portofino at the entry-level end of Ferrari’s range but as yet we have no UK prices (the Portofino starts from £164,400). It is both more powerful and lighter than the Portofino, so much so that Ferrari claims it has the best power-weight ratio in its class. It shares a wheelbase with the Portofino but as its entirely different design language suggests, it is a very different car – Ferrari says 70 per cent of components in the Roma are new.
Maranello also says the Roma is a “2+” but as yet we do not know whether plus stands for optional kids’ seats in the back or maybe just extra luggage room. Its rival from Gaydon, the Vantage, is of course a strict two-seater, but one with no shortage of room for two.
The Roma’s interior is based very much around separate driver and passenger “cells”, separated by a chunky spar down the middle that splits the cabin in two much more decisively than the centre console in the British car. With touch screens for driver and passenger, and what Ferrari says is a completely new user interface – including a new steering wheel with haptic controls – the Roma is said to major on being intuitive and user-friendly. Matrix LED lights and adaptive cruise control are two features backing up its claims to being a relaxing long distance car.