It’s midday in Geneva, and Ferrari chairman Luca di Montezemolo has just pulled the covers off Ferrari’s monumentally long-awaited new hypercar to reveal… the Ferrari LaFerrari.
The what? The Ferrari The Ferrari? Or just LaFerrari? It’s an odd one, for sure. Like so many wonderful Italian things, the name of this latest piece of Maranello magic doesn’t quite work in English. In fact, technically speaking it doesn’t even work in Italian. But what the hell: it is what it is, a limited edition 499-strong definitive statement from a company whose flagship cars have been nothing less than milestones in automotive evolution – think 1984’s turbocharged 288 GTO, ‘87’s carbon fibre F40, ‘95’s F1-derived F50, and 2002’s everything Enzo.
LaFerrari. We’ll get the hang of it, and you will too. Here are the bits you need to memorise: the mid-mounted, direct injection 6.3-litre V12 is an evolution of the F12berlinetta’s mighty unit, and it’s hooked up to a dual-clutch gearbox and electric motor, whose main control unit sits on top of the ‘box. A 120-cell, 60kg lithium ion battery pack is very tightly packaged under the seats in a Kevlar casing, and there are high-tension orange wires to isolate the high voltages that are generated. The V12 spins to 9250rpm and produces 790bhp; the electric motor adds the equivalent of another 160bhp. Yep, that’s a total of 950bhp in a car that weighs around 1300kg dry (roughly the same as the Enzo). It also has a walloping 663lb ft of torques.
Also published on Medium.