The '040 was a substantial upgrade over the '030 that had previously been used by Apple. It featured 1.2 million transistors, over four times as many as its predecessor. This processor increased the L1 cache size by a factor of eight to 4096 bytes, and it was the first 68k processor to have an on-board floating-point unit (FPU). While not without its drawbacks, the '040 processor was an obvious candidate for Apple's next line of premium workstations at the time. And this line would become known as “Quadra,” starting with the Quadra 700 and 900 models in late 1991.
In 1990-1991, I was working for an Apple authorized dealer. I remember the Quadra line, in particular, the 700. It was the most popular machine among desktop publisher. It was fast. I liked its vertical and boxy look. It was different. What is interesting is the description of the Motorola 68040 processor. Compare this to the Apple Silicon, it’s simply unbelievable. The M1 chip comes from an alien world.