A week has passed since my broken Ferrari F355 was miraculously brought back to life after a simple hose replacement. I’ve managed to drive it nearly every day since, and it’s immediately obvious this is the best car I’ve ever owned. This impractical Ferrari has been utilized for the morning school run, daily errands and even the emergency evening milk run — which took an hour to complete because I couldn’t stop driving it. Every time I’m behind the wheel, I find something new that I love about this thing — but here’s what I’ve found so far.
What has me totally addicted to driving this car is the exhaust note, which has been further enhanced with new headers, high-flow catalytic converters and a Capristo exhaust. This $7,000 setup mated to the Ferrari V8 creates the most-beautiful noises I’ve ever heard. Many people knock the convertible F355 for its looks — but with the top down, your ears have a unobstructed front-row seat to the Stairway to Heaven of exhaust notes, and I’ll never get tired of it.
The styling of the F355, even in convertible form, is stunning. While my car shares the hard-edged silhouette of the earlier 348 and Testarossa, unlike its predecessors that scream "1980s," the F355 doesn’t look dated. Typical with the ’90s and early 2000s era, my Ferrari was customized with aftermarket wheels and a boomin’ aftermarket stereo setup — but I actually like the changes. I wouldn’t mind switching to some "Challenge"-style wheels to make my car similar to the "more than you can afford, pal" F355 in the original "Fast and Furious" movie — but I’m not willing to pay $6,000 (the going rate for a set of Challenge wheels) to make that happen. Even without the wheels, I’ve probably said that famous line at least 100 times now.
Setting aside perfect exhaust and styling, the driving experience itself is transcendent. The 355 has the same visceral, classic feel of a 348, without feeling slow and primitive. Power-wise, the F355 isn’t too far behind the 360 that replaced it — which, in my opinion, is far less attractive and engaging to drive. To me, the F355 with the famous metal-gated shifter is the last Ferrari that doesn’t feel like you’re driving in a video game — though admittedly, the opportunity to drive a LaFerrari or an Enzo may change my mind.
I’m going to continue driving my Ferrari as much as possible, for as long as possible, before it inevitably breaks. The ancient Greeks used to speak of Sirens, a beautiful mermaidlike creature with an irresistible singing voice that would lead men to sail their ships into the rocks — where these men would lose everything they had, and eventually meet their doom. Perhaps a time traveler told the ancient Greeks about the Ferrari F355 — and that’s how they interpreted his tale. Find a Ferrari F355 for sale
Tyler Hoover went broke after 10 years in the car business and now sells hamburgers to support his fleet of needy cars. He lives in Wichita, Kansas.