Our test car didn’t do justice to the sparseness of the Speciale in standard form, on account of £1700 worth of optional Alcantara upholstery fitted.
So, take a long hard look at the pared-down cabin pictured here, and then imagine bare aluminium where the soft-touch cloth is on the wheelarch sections and around the centre console.
This is one of the most uncompromising cockpits that you’re ever likely to come across in an Italian exotic – and that’s exactly how it should be. There are open-topped lightweight sports cars and dedicated sprint machines more opulently appointed than this.
The seat shells and interior door panels are carbonfibre, and there are some wonderful examples of fresh detail design in the new interior door handles and the blade-like console of buttons for the transmission and launch control.
You don’t get a glovebox in a 458 Speciale – in its place is a kneepad for your terrified passenger. The car’s peripheral control consoles to the right and left of the steering wheel have been cut down, because they could be: there’s no sat-nav or in-car entertainment, unless you pay to have them put back in.