Ferrari’s big breakthrough with the Roma Spider is a canvas roof

In most cases, launching a new Ferrari is a pretty big deal. Think back to the premieres of the groundbreaking LaFerrari, the hybrid SF90 Stradale and last year’s Purosangue SUV – all significant moments of their time. Now the Italian outfit has unveiled another new model, but the biggest talking point is quite a retro tech. Experience the Ferrari Roma Spider with the first folding fabric convertible top on a front-engined Ferrari since 1969.

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Ferrari unveiled the all-new Roma Spider last night and it’s looking neat. I like the Roma, which launched in 2019 as the brand’s newest front-engined grand tourer, offering a 3.9-liter V8 and rear-wheel drive in a fairly sleek design. But one important thing it was missing was a removable roof.

Luckily, Ferrari has rectified this deficiency with the new Roma Spider, which retains the original car’s good looks and adds an all-new fabric roof. That roof, Ferrari says, is the first time the Italian company has fitted a car with a fabric roof since the 1969 365 GTS4.

It seems strange that Ferrari is screaming about what is, let’s face it, fairly old technology. But here we are.

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Roof up to roof down in just 13.5 seconds. Image: Ferrari

According to Ferrari, the fabric roof was chosen because it’s much more compact than the soft-top hardtop you’ll find on the SF90 and F8 Spider. This means, according to the company, that the Roma retains its practical trunk and “increases the versatility of the car”.

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What’s also nice about the new roof is that, according to Ferrari, it comes with “numerous bespoke options”. This means that anyone in the market for a Roma Spider can choose from a variety of bespoke fabrics, colors and even contrast stitching on their top, which could look very cool.

Proving that it’s not all about style over substance, Ferrari also reports that the top can unfold in just 13.5 seconds and open and close while driving at speeds of up to 60 km/h. It also comes with a new wind deflector, designed to keep the breeze from messing up your hair too much.

Room for you and all your hopes and dreams. Image: Ferrari

Away from the shrill roof, most Roma remain familiar. That long hood houses a twin-turbo V8 that produces 611 horsepower, mated to Ferrari’s eight-speed dual-clutch transmission. All of this means the Roma Spider can reach a top speed of 198mph and a zero to 62mph speed in the manufacturer’s stated 3.4 seconds.

To bring all that power to a halt, the Roma Spider features 15.4-inch disc brakes up front and 14-inch rotors in the rear. Ferrari says the car comes to a standstill from 62 mph in just 32 metres, which is about 105 feet.

If that all sounds good to you, Ferrari has a fairly extensive configurator on its website to help you visualize your dream Roma Spider fit-out.

See! A spider! Image: Ferrari

And while there’s no word on pricing for the Spider yet, given that the coupe starts at $247,310, it’s safe to say the configurator is as close as most of us will see this car in our driveways .

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