Maranello engineers wanted to create a car with the dynamism and excitement of an authentic prancing horse, but with added versatility and convenience of everyday driver. The Portofino does it all, with one key exception – aural excitement. For this very reason, one of the owners recently came knocking on our doors, looking for a solution, which would add more excitement to his driving experience.
Our instant suggestion was immediately the Capristo exhaust, which has been developed especially for Portofino. We have fitted Capristo exhaust systems on literally hundreds of Ferraris before, always with the same striking result. Their products genuinely transforms the car’s soundtrack, and, in this case, as per our customers reports, can even result in throwing flames during hard acceleration.
So, why Capristo? Firstly, it is a ‘cat-back’ system, which replaces exhaust parts downstream of the catalytic converters. It is fairly simple project; therefore, we only need to swap the original silencers with the high-performance stainless-steel ones.
Secondly, and as the consequence of the first point, the original catalysts and upstream exhaust system remain untouched, hence the emissions readings are unaffected. This is a crucial aspect of this installation as it completely eradicates risk of engine warnings at any revs level.
The Capristo exhaust includes two components: a dual-channels sport rear silencer replacement with integrated valves and an optional remote control for an easy valve operation. The new sporty silencers join up to the original tail pipes and consequently, the rear of the car retains its original Maranello look.
The effect was very predictable for us, but extremely pleasing and surprising to the car’s owner. His Ferrari Portofino now rumbles into life on start-up and settles on much deeper and fuller V8 idle. The volume slowly increases with the revs rise, and from about 3000rpm brings on a higher pitched, louder, more exciting exhaust note.
A very simple rule applies here: the higher the revs the higher the note is. The car’s soundtrack is therefore changing even further, and when the engine is working on around 5000rpm, it emits a far nicer metallic scream rather than fairly flat gruff of the original system.
This volume linearity is yet another important reason for choosing the Capristo system. The stock exhaust is set up to either open or close the valves. This means there is highly noticeable change in the car’s volume when it happens. Capristo eliminates this issue completely – the exhaust note has been fine-tuned by the German engineers to build up the pitch and volume gradually and smoothly rather in contrast to the “trumpety” valve switch effect of the stock exhaust.
The last important advantage of the Capristo exhaust is a nicely designed remote control. It gives the owner full control over opening and closing the valves. When closed, the car reverts almost to the stock volume. This function adds a great flexibility to quiet the exhaust down for early starts, highway cruising or late-night returns. The remote control is fully optional. The vehicle’s sound can also be controlled via the original ‘manettino’ switch on a driving wheel. However, then it is limited to the factory driving modes.
We receive many enquiries about this system for obvious reasons – the addition of turbochargers has changed Portofino into a much quieter, almost ordinary sounding Ferrari. Several owners feel it is a real shame and we have to agree. This exhaust, however, remedies the situation perfectly well, adding the much-needed excitement and a more thrilling, ‘Ferrari-esque’ howl. To quote the owners: “the Capristo sound is what Portofino should have right from the start. It suits its personality much better and adds this missing thrill to their ride experience”.