by John Tallodi
The GTC4Lusso is the thoroughly updated performance four-seater version of the original FF, a car that introduced all-wheel drive and family-friendly practicality to the Ferrari range.
The ‘base’ GTC4Lusso T drops the all-weather traction advantage and the V12 engine, and in its place is a turbocharged V8 and conventional rear-wheel drive layout. The result is a lower price tag, much-improved economy and practically the same lofty performance levels.
The cabin is covered in swathes of expensive leather, aluminum and carbon-fiber detailing. The front seats are well-shaped and comfortable to sit in for long periods and the controls and switchgear are all superbly made. The dashboard itself has very few physical buttons as most of the controls are either placed on the steering wheel or can be accessed via the infotainment touchscreen system.
There has almost always been a four-seater Ferrari in the range but in the GTC4Lusso T there is now actually space enough for more than just your luggage. Climbing in still requires some acrobatics but there is enough space for shorter adults and the cargo area can be loaded with a weekends worth of luggage with some clever packing.
The large transmission tunnel extends through the center of the cabin and there are a number of storage solutions for small items. A number of bespoke bags and a boot net are also available to make the most of the available space.
At first the ultra-quick steering ratio and very responsive throttle pedal make the Lusso T seem nervy and darty until you get accustomed to the sharp responses and adjust your inputs.
Despite the additional weight the Lusso T carries over the mid-engined V8s and two-seater V12s, it displays similar levels of agility and handling capability as the rest of the range. There is a five mode traction control system which can be completely turned off if you are brave or talented enough to try.
The ride is firm but controlled, the adaptive suspension absorbing most bumps well. The cabin is well-insulated from the world when you are taking it easy and it is a consummate highway cruiser, some tire roar does make itself heard over coarse road surfaces though.
The biggest changes over the V12 Lusso are in the powertrain department. The Lusso T swaps out the 6.3-liter V12 for a twin-turbo 3.9-liter V8, power is down at 602 horsepower vs. 680hp, although torque levels are actually up with the V8 producing 561 lb-ft against the V12’s 514 lb-ft.
The all-wheel drivetrain has also been dropped making the Lusso T lighter in the process and the 0-62mph time of 3.5-seconds is only a tenth off the more powerful car. Both share the same 7-speed dual-clutch transmission.
The turbocharged engine offers a decidedly linear power delivery and while it may not race to the redline with the alacrity of the V12 engine, it is superbly capable and delivers a massive level of thrust at any speed. Fuel economy is claimed to be up to 25% better than the V12 although no official figures are out just yet.
The Lusso T may be the base model in the GTC4 range but in Ferrari world that still means you get an enormous range of personalization options and a very comprehensive standard specification level. In fact, the specification levels are practically identical to the V12 GTC4.
Included as standard are Carbon-ceramic brakes, four-wheel steering, 20-inch alloy wheels, 10.2-inch touchscreen, folding rear seatbacks, reverse camera and parking sensors front and rear.
Audio upgrades include a high powered HiFi system, 128GB music storage expansion and Apple CarPlay compatibility. A passenger information display, and a choice of suitcases, soft bags and Golf bags are also available.
External options include a sport exhaust system, panoramic roof, rear wiper, dual-view front parking cameras, suspension lifter and adaptive headlights. There is a long list of paint color options to choose from too.
The seats can have either Daytona or Diamond stitching styling and the seats, carpets and just about every panel can be had in a range of materials and colors.
The GTC4Lusso T combines supercar pace with a superbly crafted interior that offers seating for four. The lack of the all-wheel drivetrain will only be a deal-breaker for a small number of customers requiring the additional grip, while the twin-turbo V8 is as quick as the V12 in real world conditions while consuming far less fuel.
Add to this identical specification levels and a lower price and this may well be the better option for most shoppers looking for a daily driver and supercar in one package.