I have always thought that a sports car should resemble a woman lying on her side: the front-wheel arches resembling the shoulders, the middle of the car falling away like the midsection, and the (larger) rear-wheel arches mimicking the swell of the hips.
Hence the beauty of Ferrari’s Dino 246 GT, my love for which has been well documented on these pages, and which resembles the slender female models of its era in the early 1970s:
What then, do we make of Ferrari’s new Portofino, which replaces the superb California?
Here’s what I see: it looks block-y and more muscular — more like a model who’s been working out in the gym who should look something like this:
…except that the Portfino doesn’t look like that either.
I know, I know: so much of today’s automotive design is shaped by what works in a wind tunnel as opposed to actual, you know, beauty. But Ferrari, at least until recently, seems to have been keeping the old proportions alive — which is why their cars have typically looked better than anyone else’s. I’m just not so sure about the Portofino.
(Please note that I’m only comparing the designs — the Portofino’s top speed of 198 mph dwarfs the Dino’s 145 mph.)
Update: Reader askeptic points out that Ferrari, or at least their ad agency, used to share my sentiments. Note the ad from a later era:
Wrong Ferrari, however: the 308 looked like Twiggy, not Veruschka.