Two birds, one stone: Autostrada Motore Inc., the official distributor of Ferrari vehicles in the Philippines, celebrated its fifth year with the launch of the 488 Spider, coinciding with racing driver and business magnate Angie King’s win in her class in Sepang Circuit of the Malaysia leg of the Asia Ferrari Challenge.
“We’ve celebrated many milestones in our short history in the country, and our fifth anniversary is the most momentous yet. Having delivered five years of the highest quality of customer service to our clients, our commitment to uphold this standard for the next five, 10, 15 years has only gotten stronger,” Autostrada president Wellington Soong said in a statement.
Highlighting the launch were the newly-renovated Ferrari/Maserati showroom that featured more glass walls and dividers, which Soong said they are sourced from Italy, and the 488 Spider, which is essentially a convertible version of its coupe brother, the GTB.
Powering the Spider is the same 3.9-liter twin turbocharged V8 from the GTB, producing 661hp at 8,000 revolutions per minute and 760 Nm of torque at 3,000 rpm, mated to a 7-speed F1 gearbox produced by Getrag. It can sprint from zero to 60 mph (96 kph) in 3.0 seconds and can reach a top speed of 202 mph (323 kph), 3 mph (4.8 kph) slower than the GTB.
The car is 50 kilograms heavier than the GTB, thanks to a retractable folding metal hartdtop, but is 10 kg lighter than the 458 Spider it replaces.
Soong told Fast Times that four customers have already placed orders for the car, and will cost P30 million without options, or P1 million more than the GTB.
On Angie King’s win on Sepang: ‘I’m on a high’
Angie King told Fast Times she was overwhelmed with the support from the Philippine car community from her win in Sepang, Malaysia, where she went “on a high.”
“Winning on any condition feels amazing. Once you get a taste being in the podium, you keep looking for more. Definitely, I’m on a high because all the local car community has been like ‘How did you do it, you were such an amazing driver!’ sort. It’s a great feeling, just to know that I had to represent the country and battled with other countries in getting first place in my division, and I’m so happy,” King told Fast Times in an interview.
As hot weather engulfed the atmosphere and the asphalt in Sepang, home of the Malaysian F1 Grand Prix and MotoGP, King said that it not only tested the drivers’ determination but also tire management.
King, who was seventh on qualifying overall, had a heated battle with Yanbing Xing at pole position until Xing got hit at the eighth lap, giving King an advantage.
“Marc [Soong] was the one who pushed me to get in the series. He’s very dedicated to make sure I’m taken cared of, and when he does his live videos to share with everyone what’s happening, he definitely has made the experience of racing the 488 Challenge a lot of fun,” Angie added.
The younger Marc Soong is Wellington’s son who also handles Autostrada, and supported King in her races along with her spouse, Joey Mead King.
King used to join at drifting events and Formula 4 before she got her racing license for the Ferrari Challenge earlier this year. Overall, King is fourth in her class before the next race in Singapore.
Her trademark car shop, Car Porn Racing, specializes in car modifications such as wide body kits and improving a car’s performance, and doing customer car projects.