From £152,1168

This is where the Ferrari California departs from any other current Ferrari. Although a few familiar traits remain – chiefly the light, direct steering – the California has an entirely different set of ride and handling priorities from, say, an F430 Spider

The first surprise is how well the California rides. We tried both the passive dampers and the optional Magneride units, and both (even with the latter set to Sport) coped impressively well with our road network, and especially so for a convertible. Such is the California’s comfort that you could easily use one to travel significant distances.

Matt Saunders Autocar

Matt Saunders

Road test editor
The California is seriously competent and capable

That suppleness doesn't mean you have to compromise on poise and control anymore, either. A significant overhaul early in 2012 produced an updated car, with changes including a significantly lighter chassis, reworked suspension and steering and engine upgrades. The main area the car benefitted was in its dynamic performance, especially with the optional Magneride system fitted.

Where once the chassis set-up worked fine driving at four-tenths and fell apart slightly at seven-tenths, it is now an accomplished all-rounder, with very little roll and dive, and a credit to its maker's heritage.

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • DS 3 Crossback 2019 road test review - hero front
    19 July 2019
    Car review
    French premium brand gets PSA’s new supermini platform first. Does it deliver...
  • BMW 318d front three quarters on the road
    18 July 2019
    First Drive
    Entry-level diesel is likeable addition to range but doesn't live up to...
  • MG ZS EV 2019 UK first drive review - hero front
    17 July 2019
    First Drive
    Cheap, spacious and all-round endearing electric version of MG's ZS soft...

The Handling Speciale pack is a diversion in our view; it's hard to take confidence from, picking up speed off centre quite suddenly but without a corresponding increase in weight. It encourages you to throw the California around energetically, but it makes a smooth cornering line hard to follow, and it's all too easy to introduce unnecessary understeer.

Save money on your car insurance

Compare quotesCompare insurance quotes

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • DS 3 Crossback 2019 road test review - hero front
    19 July 2019
    Car review
    French premium brand gets PSA’s new supermini platform first. Does it deliver...
  • BMW 318d front three quarters on the road
    18 July 2019
    First Drive
    Entry-level diesel is likeable addition to range but doesn't live up to...
  • MG ZS EV 2019 UK first drive review - hero front
    17 July 2019
    First Drive
    Cheap, spacious and all-round endearing electric version of MG's ZS soft...