Wednesday 9 November 2011
The Ferrari F355 is a sports car built by Ferrari from May 1994 to 1999. It is an evolution of the Ferrari 348 and was replaced by the Ferrari 360. It is a mid-engined, rear wheel drive V8-powered 2-seat coupe. One major difference between the V8 in the 348 and that in the F355, apart from the displacement increase from 3.4 to 3.5 L, is that the F355 features a 5-valve per-cylinder head that is considerably more powerful, producing 380 PS (279 kW; 375 hp). The longitudinal 90° V8 engine was bored 2mm over the 348's engine (85 mm rather than 83 mm) to achieve the modest increase in displacement to of 3495.50 cc. The engine's compression ratio was 11:1 and it employed the Bosch Motronic M2.7 engine control unit in the 1995 model year, and switched to the M5.2 in 1996 through end of production, using electronic fuel injection and an ignition control system with a single spark plug per cylinder and a dry-sump oil lubrication system.
The frame is a steel monocoque with tubular steel rear sub-frame with front and rear suspensions using independent, unequal-length wishbones, coil springs over gas-filled telescopic shock absorbers with electronic control servos and anti-roll bars. Ferrari fitted all road-going F355 models with Pirelli tires, size 225/40ZR 18 in front and 265/40 ZR 18 in the rear.
At launch, two models were available: the coupe Berlinetta, and the targa topped GTS. The Spider (convertible) version was introduced in 1995. In 1997 the Formula One style paddle gear shift electrohydraulic manual transmission was introduced with the Ferrari 355 F1 (note the dropping of the F before the 355) adding £6,000 to the dealer asking price.
The nomenclature does not follow the formula from the previous decades, ie. engine capacity (in liters) followed by number of cylinders (eg. 246 = 2.4 litres + 6 cyl, 308 = 3.0 litres + 8 cyl, and same for the 328, 348, 512 etc). For the F355, Ferrari used engine capacity plus followed by the number of valves per cylinder (355 = 3.5 litres engine capacity and 5 valves per cylinder) to bring the performance advances introduced by a 5 valve per cylinder configuration into the forefromt. The F355 is relatively common as Ferraris go with 11,273 total units produced.
- engine: V8
- capacity: 3500 cc
- horsepower: 380 HP
- gearbox: 6+1
- top speed: 295 km/h