27th Feb 2006, 19:37

OK. I'm in the market for a Mondial. It's the only Ferrari that meets my needs - four seats, convertible. They are not my favorite, the 308 GTSi has always been my favorite, but I can't buy a Ferrari that my whole family can't enjoy.

I plan on maintaining it myself. We'll see how that works out. I've always maintained my own cars, Fiats, Porsches, Alfas and Healys.

I agree with both of the Ferrari/Porsche sentiments expressed in this thread. Let me summarize how that works. Ferrari's are fundamentally different from Porsches. Porsches are excellently engineered mechanical devices built with sole intent of straightening corners and flattening your eyeballs. They do that well.

Ferraris on the other hand are the next best thing to God, himself. They're about sex, emotion and passion. Who cares if Porsches are faster. Sheesh, there are Hondas and Toyotas and Mitsubishis that will flat suck the headlights out of a Mondial,a 308 or even a 348. Who gives a crap? At the end of the day your still drivin' a jumped up, corrigated, utility contrivance.

Have you ever seen a Porsche or Mitsubishi at the Olympic opening ceremony? No. Why? They aren't Ferraris. They don't stir the soul. They aren't about passion.

Having said that. 928's are just about the most gorgeous car ever built. They're amazing.

That's my two bits.


15th Mar 2006, 22:58

I recently acquired a 1990 Mondial t Cabriolet which was well-maintained and in specimen condition. The car has around 15,000 original miles. Like others, I heavily recommend a pre-purchase inspection performed by a well-qualified and referred mechanic. That said, some of the comments regarding costs of belt repairs, etc., seem way out of order. A belt repair needs to be done about every three years and should cost less than $3K. In general, one should budget $1K-to-$2K of service costs per year, and a major service every three years for around $3K (belt, etc.), after the car is put in top-drawer condition, addressing any ignored problems by prior owners. And like anything, sometime repairs will crop up from time to time, after all it's a 15 year old car.

The car is a blast to drive, and if you enjoy an adrenaline rush--this should do the trick. Yes, there are faster cars and it is shunned many Ferrari-philes, but ironically many mechanics believe it to be one of the best built cars made by the Italian icon. The styling is classic, and the tail light design is pure Enzo, not like other cars of the 1990s that remind me of the VW Scirocco. Note the new F430, reverting to the round tail light design; this happened for a reason.

Personally, I don't like the modern Ferraris but the older ones designed during Enzo's life are a different story. Sure the F1 paddle shifting is fast, but how reliable will it prove to be over time? Also, for me, it kills the driving experience.

My advice is to drive the Mondial t (1989 and later), enjoy it, push it, maintain it well, and it will be your friend. There are faster cars, but how many people complain about the Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder's speed limitations? So, if you have the millions burning a hole in your pocket, buy one? If not, the 1989 and later Mondial t's are a great deal (if you get one that has been well-maintained and loved). Also, the clutch repair isn't your typical Ferrari nightmare, it's a 2 hour job--something worth considering.

16th Mar 2006, 09:16

Thanks for your post, it was great.

$1K - $2K isn't that much to spend on an exotic per year, especially since I was spending that much to keep an old BMW 318i going in one year.

I've always thought the Mondial was the best looking Ferrari ever, and the fact that the Ferrari fanatics shun it is even better since its price won't skyrocket in the atmosphere.

The new Ferraris, from the Enzo (or FXX now I guess) down simply aren't the design stunners Mondials are.

21st Aug 2006, 20:56

I have yearned for a Mondial Cabriolet ever since the Worlds Fair in 1986 in Vancouver, Canada. The Italian Pavilion featured a red one as an example of beauty and design. Maybe hard core Ferrari types don't like it, but the Italians thought enough of it to allow tens of millions of the eyes of the world to see it for half a year at Expo 86.

It had to be the nicest design I could have imagined.

Now 20 years later I am scouring the globe to find my ideal Mondial soft top. From the commentary I take it it is best to go with the latest model. Maybe the 1993 with the automatic clutch? Anyone's views are appreciated.

31st Aug 2006, 00:43

Hi guys, love all your comments. I'm an owner of an american muscle racing shop, so keep in mind I get all my parts from wholesalers or distributors.

I now own a Mustang GT, with 500 pony's under the hood and 10:1 compression. When you tell this pony to giddy up, it will giddy up!!! And put you in the back seat to boot. This car is beautiful in and out.

Now I'm looking for my first love, another bad horse which is Ferrari. I've been doing some research on these cars. I spoke to a Ferrari mechanic in Costa Mesa California, and I asked him about the 1985 to 1987 328 GTS. He expressed that this model is pretty much sound proof, which can go over a 100.000 miles plus with the right upkeep and maintenance of course.

I've also been looking at the 89 to 93 Mondial Cabriolet. How would you compare the two Ferrari's to each other? Meaning reliability, cost, performance, and so on? I need your help from you Ferrari experts and owners. I can't make my mind up. I love both styles of these cars.

Thanks a great bunch.

Ronald from Glendora California..

11th Sep 2006, 21:07

As to 89-93 Ferrari Mondials being the best choice I get split feedback. The 328 has gotten better reviews than the 348 and it's the 348 engine that is in the 89-93 Mondials. Go figure. I hear about gremlins in the Mondial t/348 and reviews of the 3.2 Mondial or even quattrovalvole Mondial that sound easier to live with than the newer and faster 89-93 Mondial t. What is the way to go? Maybe it all boils down to avoidng a Monday and Friday manufactured car than choosing any particular model.

14th Sep 2006, 02:27

No offense to Mondial t owners, but Michael Sheehan in Keith Martin's Ferrari book (compilation of articles from Sports Car Market magazine) suggests that the 3.4 engine (also in the 348) is a nightmare. Sounds like the Mondial t has lots of pluses, but definite shortcomings. I picked the same sentiment up in the Forza Mondial Cabriolet Buyer's Guide of October, 1999. Is it wiser to get a nice 3.2 Mondial Cabriolet and forego the faster car with power steering and wider fenders?

19th Sep 2006, 00:54

I think I just might go with the 328 gts. Everything that I hear about this car is positive, even though the Mondial is a sharp looking car. It seems there might be some gremlins in there I don't want to encounter. Keep the comments coming. Thanks Ronald :)