The Ferrari Mondial was produced from 1980 to 1993 and served as the successor to the Ferrari Dino 308 GT4. With the Mondial, Ferrari paid tribute to its successful racing history it had made as 'la Scuderia’. The Mondial featured a blend of angular and thus pragmatic design, positioning it as Ferrari's entry-level model at the time. Today, it is considered a classic among Ferraris.
Pininfarina was tasked with designing the Mondial, they created a sports car that comfortably accommodated four people. This was no small feat, but Pininfarina managed it effortlessly, even leaving room for 'flying buttresses' that enhanced aerodynamics. Miraculously, they even succeeded in placing the engine between the wheelbase while accommodating four passengers. This was achieved by rotating the V8 engine a quarter turn and mounting it transversely, resulting in the car being exceptionally nimble.
In 1982, after two years in production, a 32-valve version was introduced, with four valves per cylinder instead of the previous two. The new Quattrovalvole (literally 'four valves') provided more torque and power, and it was tamed by the same manual five-speed gearbox as before, suiting the Mondial perfectly. The gear lever followed the 'dogleg' principle, where the second and third gears, as well as the fourth and fifth gears, were positioned right in front of each other for easier shifting when racing. In 1983, Ferrari launched a spacious convertible version, it was the only four-seater convertible with a mid-mounted engine that has ever been made at time of writing.
In 1985, the 3.0 litre engine was enlarged to 3.2 litres, coinciding with the release of the Ferrari 328, that uses the same engine. This variant was officially referred to as the 'Mondial 3.2.' A final iteration arrived in 1988 under the name 'Mondial t’, featuring a longitudinal engine layout while retaining the transversally mounted gearbox. The 't' version retained the same V8 engine but increased its size to 3.4 litres.
Production of the Mondial continued until 1993, a total of 6,149 were built. This unique car, though not succeeded by a direct successor, enters in history as the last mid-engined four-seater V8-powered Ferrari.
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