If the mid-engine Corvette offers the same basic ingredients as a Ferrari, why is actress/car vlogger Emelia Hartford, whose most famous build is arguably a twin-turbo C8, introducing a Prancing Horse project? Sure, the midship ‘Vette does get dangerously close to the Prancing Horse—especially in Z06 trim with the flat-plane crank V8—but a Ferrari will always be a Ferrari. So here we are, discussing Emelia’s Liberty Walk 458.
Emelia bought the 458 Italia—this is the full name of non-special-edition coupe—last year. And, as she explains in one of the multiple YouTube videos dedicated to the project, she paid $140,000 for the vehicle, which is a bargain (these cars are appreciating nowadays and we’ll get into the reasons in a few moments). Forn the get-go, this makes it her most expensive built to date.
The enthusiast states that she got a $50,000 discount due to a startup error that didn’t seem to interfere with how the car operated, but prompted the dreaded “go to dealer” message on the dashboard. Nevertheless, since the vlogger was going to turn the car into a custom toy from the get-go, that wasn’t a problem for her.
On top of that, we can add the Liberty Walk Silhouette GT widebody kit, complete with the special front apron canards, which is officially listed at $36,760.
And, as far some of the important tech bits fitted to the vehicle, Emelia chose to skip the air suspension. Instead, she went with a set of KW V3 Competition Coilovers. These two-way adjustable coilover goodies feature the HLS (hydraulic lift system), allowing the driver to lift the car—the German specialists offers the kit for $7,699.
Next up, we have the Forgeline wheels, which should be about $2,000 apiece. So far, not taking into account a myriad of other parts, some larger (e.g., the exhaust and the tires) and others smaller (e.g., materials) and the cost of labor, which is part of Emelia’s YT mojo, we’ve reached a total of $186,000.
So, in theory, the grand total should be somewhere in the $200,000 range, plus labor. However, we have to keep in mind that the vlogger may or may not have paid the full prices for the various aftermarket bits fitted to the Fezza.
Why did Emelia choose the said setup for the road connection of her Ferrari? We’ll get to that shortly, but first, let’s see why these cars are shooting up in value nowadays.
Why 458s are so cherished these days
When Maranello introduced the 458 in 2010, this made quite a splash, being a serious leap compared to the F430 it replaced, even though its 4.5L V8 was an evolution of the latter’s motor. However, no amount of praise this Ferrari received back in the day can match the cult status the supercar is enjoying nowadays. And that’s because the 2015 retirement of the 458 marked the end of an era at Ferrari.
Building on the new structure of the 458 but completely shifting the engine paradigm, Ferrari turbocharged its successors, the 488 and the still-going F8. On a greater level, the company’s charismatic chairman Luca di Montezemolo left Ferrari around that time (2014). The carmaker also went public the following year—the two are said to be… not unrelated. For the record, financial experts seem to argue that Ferrari shares (NYSE:RACE) are doing well.
More recently, Ferrari’s famously-capped annual production has gone past the 10,000 mark (2019 sales). And these days we’re waiting for the carmaker to introduce its first crossover—dubbed Purosangue, this should be closer to the FF/GTC4Lusso 2+2 GTs than your Jeep SUV/crossover, but you get the point: Ferrari is adapting to the environment, becoming less hermetical than it was in the past.
Emelia built this Ferrari for track abuse
Returning to Emelia Hartford’s Ferrari 458, the vlogger skipped the air suspension, which would’ve given her the social media-stimulating extreme stance, because she plans on tracking the Prancing Horse. Meanwhile, the supercar has been taken for a “closed course” sideways joyride, as you can see in the Alex Choi-directed intro of Emelia’s video below, which brings some sweet 2000s Gumball Rally/Fast and Furious references. Nevertheless, Emelia’s Ferrari mothership-trolling ending is the bit most enthusiasts will probably remember.
And when this wallet-corroding build hits the circuit, her mission to inspire others to work on their dream cars regardless of what these are, should be fulfilled.
Of course, you can’t expect Emelia to run out of content. For one, she still has to fix her OG YouTube car, the LS-swapped Silvia that caught fire while testing Holley’s Sky-Ram prank air intake.
Besides, even now while she waits to take the 458 out on the track she has plenty of other car vlogging stuff to do. For one, the Big Block she put into an S550 Mustang experienced a failure while she was drag racing (this could sound familiar to those following her TT C8 build) and the V8 is getting a complete overhaul these days, as you’ll see in second YT vid below.