Stand By for a New or Heavily Revised Ferrari to Be Launched Every Year
This is how Ferrari intends to manage its four mainstream model lines: At four years old, an M or modificato model will replace the original, with revised design and powertrain and chassis improvements. The completely new model comes four years beyond that. With four models in the range, one all-new or M model will be launched every year, plus such variants as Scuderia or Spyder. There will be a new top-end Enzo-type car once a decade or so.
Ferrari says its basic four-model range is how the company will continue: two “versatile” GT models (currently the convertible California and the four-seat 612) and two “extreme performance” cars (458 and 599). The marketers and engineers intend to widen that differentiation in future.
So the 612 Scaglietti replacement, codenamed F151 and due in the first half of 2011, will be a slightly more practical and cheaper car than the current 612 (pictured at top). We’re talking only slightly cheaper, though — it’ll remain about the price of a current 599GTB, with aluminum body and engine in front, but with more interior and luggage space. It’s definitely not a four-door; Ferrari CEO Amadeo Felisa has explicitly ruled that out.
The 599’s replacement, codenamed F152 and due in 2012, would be positioned farther from the F151 than the 599 is from the 612 — indications are it will be an even more extreme performance machine than the 599GTO. The F152 retains the basis of the current car: front V-12, rear transmission (a twin-clutch now), aluminum structure, and two seats.
More details on the F152 are scarce. None of these cars up to 2014 is planned as a hybrid, even though Ferrari revealed a working system at the 2010 Geneva show. Back then, Felisa told Motor Trend, “It’s not feasible for production yet. It would take three years to develop the components and two more years to get the suppliers ready for production. The purpose of this [hybrid prototype] is to find customers.
“We are doing hybrids because if we don’t there will be no more Ferrari,” he added. “We are forced by fuel consumption and CO2 rules. We will have to do other things too — aerodynamics and lightweight — because hybrid isn’t enough. But it’s not under discussion to change the character of a Ferrari. We won’t lose performance.”
Felisa said that there cannot be a continuous cycle of extra power, and that hybrids do have a positive role in the driver experience. “Every new model needs a new sensation. It is not just about extra performance or lateral g. If you couple an electric motor with a combustion engine, you can have an extra feeling of sportiness. I cannot imagine a fully electric Ferrari.”