The last time I cocked up this badly organising a test car was the foggy week I borrowed a Bentley. The Mulsanne was mine for the five days when visibility was so poor, speed limits around the country were restricted to 40mph.
So to collect the keys to a GTC4 Lusso T the weekend it decides to snow in England is frustrating. I can see the Ferrari parked outside my window but we haven’t actually been anywhere together for two days.
As the snow came down on Sunday, I managed to crawl home with the transmission in ‘ice’ setting. And I mean crawl – 603bhp rear-wheel drive provides all the traction of a bobsleigh.
What can I tell you? If you want to know about handling and performance, try Top Gear. I can reveal the cabin is a smashing place to reside and the deep rear seats will even take a grown up, possibly wearing a hat.
The Lusso T is an oddly placid place to sit though. It doesn’t ‘feel’ quite as titillating as a Ferrari should, although I’m told there is tons of grip if you want a wild moment of rear-wheel drive pranking.
If you are in the market for a four-seat supercar that will take the kids, or a dog, plus decent-sized boot of shopping, then the GTC4 Lusso T could be the answer. Key alternatives? The beautifully formed Aston Martin Rapide, of course…
My noisy neighbour has just bought a Ferrari. A sixtysomething banker, he took the obvious route to middle-aged gratification. A least it wasn’t a 911.
However, if he was really looking for Car Couture cool, something that doesn’t just shout money and bling, there’s only one Italian car worthy of serious consideration – a Maserati.
Yep, I’d rather own a ten-year-old, £15,000 Maser than ANYTHING in a Ferrari showroom.
It’s flawed, prone to the occasional breakdown and secondhand prices aren’t great but a Maserati has an understated cache you will never achieve in a prancing horse.
Join us for a week in the Quattroporte and you might understand why…
Might Santa choose a Volvo V40 Cross Country as his delivery vehicle? It may be built in Scandinavia and therefore tick the loyalty box but we reckon the man in red would select a vehicle with four-wheel drive, rather than being just a lookalike.
No, SC would require something fast, good in all weathers and with a decent amount of luggage space too. The obvious choice would be a Range Rover Sport – lashings of reindeer power and brilliant in the snow. Or what about a Mercedes G-Class? Both a tad bling perhaps?
A Bugatti Veyron would be able to dash around the world at speeds in excess of 200mph, although constant fuel stops would be required and space is tight. A seven-seat MPV doesn’t go with the image, while the Fiat Panda 4×4 has loads of street creed but might be a little uncomfortable over the rough stuff.
No, after serious consultations with Mrs Claus, we think there is only one car that is guaranteed to get the job done and in style. It’s exclusive, fast, boasts four-wheel drive and is usually provided in a colour to match his work clothes. Yes, it can only be the wildly untamed Ferrari FF.
You read it here first. Merry Christmas…