Car News:  Oversteer

The 2005 Ferrari Superamerica Is Just Plain Cool

RELATED READING
See all Ferrari 575M Maranello articles
RESEARCH BY MAKE
Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Ferrari cars, trucks and SUVs
Acura cars, trucks and SUVs Alfa Romeo cars, trucks and SUVs AMC cars, trucks and SUVs Aston Martin cars, trucks and SUVs Audi cars, trucks and SUVs Bentley cars, trucks and SUVs BMW cars, trucks and SUVs Bugatti cars, trucks and SUVs Buick cars, trucks and SUVs Cadillac cars, trucks and SUVs Chevrolet cars, trucks and SUVs Chrysler cars, trucks and SUVs Daewoo cars, trucks and SUVs Datsun cars, trucks and SUVs DeLorean cars, trucks and SUVs Dodge cars, trucks and SUVs Eagle cars, trucks and SUVs Ferrari cars, trucks and SUVs FIAT cars, trucks and SUVs Fisker cars, trucks and SUVs Ford cars, trucks and SUVs Freightliner cars, trucks and SUVs Genesis cars, trucks and SUVs Geo cars, trucks and SUVs GMC cars, trucks and SUVs Honda cars, trucks and SUVs HUMMER cars, trucks and SUVs Hyundai cars, trucks and SUVs INFINITI cars, trucks and SUVs Isuzu cars, trucks and SUVs Jaguar cars, trucks and SUVs Jeep cars, trucks and SUVs Kia cars, trucks and SUVs Lamborghini cars, trucks and SUVs Land Rover cars, trucks and SUVs Lexus cars, trucks and SUVs Lincoln cars, trucks and SUVs Lotus cars, trucks and SUVs Maserati cars, trucks and SUVs Maybach cars, trucks and SUVs Mazda cars, trucks and SUVs McLaren cars, trucks and SUVs Mercedes-Benz cars, trucks and SUVs Mercury cars, trucks and SUVs MINI cars, trucks and SUVs Mitsubishi cars, trucks and SUVs Nissan cars, trucks and SUVs Oldsmobile cars, trucks and SUVs Plymouth cars, trucks and SUVs Pontiac cars, trucks and SUVs Porsche cars, trucks and SUVs RAM cars, trucks and SUVs Rolls-Royce cars, trucks and SUVs Saab cars, trucks and SUVs Saturn cars, trucks and SUVs Scion cars, trucks and SUVs smart cars, trucks and SUVs SRT cars, trucks and SUVs Subaru cars, trucks and SUVs Suzuki cars, trucks and SUVs Tesla cars, trucks and SUVs Toyota cars, trucks and SUVs Volkswagen cars, trucks and SUVs Volvo cars, trucks and SUVs Yugo cars, trucks and SUVs
RESEARCH BY STYLE
AWD/4WD
Commercial
Convertible
Coupe
Hatchback
Hybrid/Electric
Luxury
Sedan
SUV/Crossover
Truck
Van/Minivan
Wagon
ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Chris O'Neill December 2017

Here's a 2005 Ferrari Superamerica that I spotted at a run-of-the-mill service center near downtown Salt Lake City. I've always loved these. A reworked version of the standard 575M, the Superamerica was built in incredibly small numbers: just 559 for the entire world during the 2005 model year (or so Ferrari claims).

What made the Superamerica unique was its folding, "electrochromic" roof panel. With the flip of a lever at the top of the windshield and the touch of a button on the center console, the clear glass panel would rotate backwards 180 degrees, coming to rest on top of the trunk lid -- allowing for an open-roof, speedster-style driving experience. Additionally, the clear glass panel featured what Ferrari called "electrochromic technology," which allowed the driver to adjust its translucency through another knob on the center console. There were five levels -- on one end of the spectrum, a faint blue, allowing for maximum sunlight transmission, and on the other end, a dark blue, which blocked out as much light as possible -- although no setting turned the roof completely opaque.

On top of the pedestrian 575M, the Superamerica also featured increased structural bracing to compensate for the absence of a fixed roof, and a 37-horsepower bump to its 5.7-liter V12, in order to justify the "Super-" prefix. Ferrari dubbed it the "world's fastest convertible," thanks to its 199-mph top speed.

The Superamerica is one of my favorite Ferrari models of all time -- and only 170 are said to have been sold in the United States. There are few things in life I enjoy more than statistically improbable occurrences, which may explain why I'm such a Superamerica fanatic -- somehow, I've seen three of them, or rather, almost 2 percent of all the Superamerica models sold in the U.S. -- all by complete chance. There was a red one on Hilton Head Island in 2005, before I even knew what the car was. There was another red one that I chased down in an Audi A8 in Chantilly, Virginia in 2011. Then, finally, there's this one that I spotted at a service shop near my apartment in Utah. Let's hope it wasn't actually being serviced there -- a great way to destroy the value of an ultra-rare Ferrari is to service it anywhere other than a Ferrari dealer, which in this case happened to only be three blocks away.

Anytime I see what looks like a run-of-the-mill 550 Maranello or a 575M, I always do a double take just to check if it's a Superamerica -- and lo and behold, here was another one. Naturally, like any shrewd supercar owner, the owner of this one has it registered in Montana.

Chris O'Neill grew up in the rust belt and now lives in Salt Lake City, Utah. He managed to work in the auto industry for a while without once crashing a corporate fleet vehicle. On Instagram, he is the @MountainWestCarSpotter.

MORE FROM OVERSTEER:
So Where Exactly Is the Lamborghini Urus's Fuel Door?
Video | The Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk Is the World's Most Powerful SUV
Video | Here's Why the 2018 Jeep Wrangler Is Way Better Than the Old One

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
The 2005 Ferrari Superamerica Is Just Plain Cool - Autotrader