Acer are launching a new netbook under the Ferrari brand, and its specifications are anything but pedestrian.

As seen over on TrustedReviews, the new netbook ditches the ubiquitous Intel Atom processor for rival AMD's dual-core 1.2GHz Athlon X2 L310. Gone also is the integrated Intel graphics in favour of an ATI Radeon HD3200-based system, which should provide considerable oomph when compared to its more traditional brethren.

A larger than traditional 11.6" display running at 1366x768 means that 720P HD playback should be a breeze, and if you find yourself looking for a bit more poke for the occasional gaming session the unit is to support AMD's ATI XGP technology for connection to an external graphics card.

The rest of the specifications are boosted over Acer's Aspire One, too: 2GB of RAM, a 250GB mechanical hard drive - no mention of the availability of an SSD-based version - Bluetooth, 802.11n WiFi, and an integral 3G modem for true wireless Internet access.

The unit will also feature a multi-touch trackpad, which ties in nicely with Acer's choice of operating system: Windows 7. Indeed, the Ferrari netbook is due to launch on October 22nd, to tie in with the official launch date of Microsoft's latest OS.

Sadly, all these bells and whistles come at a cost premium: Acer has stated that prices will start at an eye-watering €499 (£435) - for which you could buy an admittedly less-portable but far more powerful traditional notebook. That said, if you need the portability of a netbook but want something a little bit special, the Acer Ferrari could well be the way to go.

Is this the sort of direction you'd like the netbook market to take, or should companies be concentrating on low-cost devices with long battery life instead of these half-way house mini-notebooks? Share your thoughts over in the forums.
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