Sunday, August 23, 2009

Ferrari FXX Evolution

FerrariThe innovative FXX program, based on the eponymous prototype car and launched by Ferrari in June 2005, is being extended to 2008/2009. The FXX, which is the most advanced GT ever created at Maranello, has been updated with an evolution package aimed at further improving its handling and performance. The package was developed as a result of Ferrari's collaboration with its Client Test Drivers and with the invaluable support of Michael Schumacher. The FXXs equipped with this package will also sport a new livery in addition to new rear wing profiles.

The FXX is not homologated for road use and there are no plans to compete with it either. In fact, the FXX prototype is designed exclusively for track driving as part of a specific R&D program agreed with a selected group of just over 20 clients involving 14 group test sessions and 14 private ones in the last two years. Thanks to readings taken over the 10,200 miles of tests carried out in 2006 and the 11,500 miles covered in 2007, the modifications made to the car have focused on honing its aerodynamics, running gear and electronics. Seven-times Formula 1 World Champion Michael Schumacher also joined the ranks of the client test drivers and gave the program the benefit of his vast experience on several occasions.

Maranello's engineers studied the wealth of information gained to develop a kit which will cut the FXX's Fiorano lap time to under 1'16'' (previously it was 1'18''). The FXX's 6262 cc V12 engine can now punch out a massive 860 bhp at 9500 rpm. Gearshifting takes just 60 ms, a drop of 20 ms on the previous time, and the gear ratios have been adapted to make use of the extra 1000 rpm now delivered by the engine.

The car's new traction control system, developed in close collaboration with the GES Racing Division engineers, gives the driver a choice of no less than nine different settings (plus the off position) which are selected using a switch on the central tunnel. This means that the driver really can modify the car's behavior on the track from corner to corner, just as the Formula 1 drivers do to maximize performance and reduce tire wear. The FXX's traction control is also now less invasive and more flexible, adapting more efficiently to the individual driving style of each driver - a requirement pinpointed when this very extreme car was being driven on the track by non-professional drivers.

The FXX's special 19" Bridgestone tires now last longer too thanks to a new car setup and new front suspension geometry, while the Brembo brakes, which boast large Composite Ceramic Material (CCM) discs, are more efficient with the result that the brake pads last twice as long. Thanks to the drivers' feedback the Ferrari engineers have also developed new aerodynamic solutions aimed at increasing downforce over the rear axle. The FXX now sports a new rear diffuser, nolder and rear flaps which have combined to increase aerodynamic efficiency by 25% overall. The active front spoiler control system settings have been adjusted to take these modifications into account too. New telemetry monitoring of the steering angle and brake pump pressure will further boost the interaction between Client test drivers and the company's engineers also. From next year onwards, it will be possible for drivers to have two extra video cameras mounted on their car in addition the existing rear-facing one. This will, of course, give the drivers excellent rear visibility without having to impinge in any way on the car's aerodynamics.

The FXX evolution package includes participation in a series of track events that Ferrari is organizing at international circuits for 2008/2009. Six events are planned for each year (two in North America, two in Europe and two in Asia). In addition to these, the FXXs will also be participating, as per tradition, in the prestigious end-of-season Ferrari World Finals.

Ferrari F430

The F430 features a new cast-aluminum transmission casing that houses the gearbox in unit with the electronic differential and bevel type final drive, as well as the engine oil tank. The 6-speed gearbox incorporates multicone synchronizers, while both the 6th gear and the final drive have been lengthened to make the most of the greater power and torque of the new engine. The F430 is available with either the classic Ferrari open-gate manual gearbox or with the F1 paddle shift that Ferrari has continuously developed and refined over recent years for its road-going berlinettas. Thanks to that ongoing development, Ferrari's F1 gearbox for the F430 is state of the art, introducing a number of important modifications: thanks to inputs from the engineers on the Gestione Sportiva racing side, the F1 gearbox management incorporates a new control strategy which further perfects gearchange speed and smoothness under hard use. Changing gear takes just 150 milliseconds, as measured by the 'hole' in acceleration during the change (intended as the overall time from declutching, changing gear to releasing the clutch).


The F430's interior has been re-designed for improved driver ergonomics. The instruments are housed in a new binnacle, and this design together with the layout of the dashboard underlines the care that has gone into grouping all the major controls in front of the driver within easy reach. In the driver's direct line of sight are the rev counter, which features new graphics with a choice of either a red or yellow background and a new metal surround, the digital readout of the gear ratio selected (F1 version) and a multi-function display. The same uncompromising approach to driver control was the inspiration behind mounting the starter button and manettino on the steering wheel. The wheel itself is new with the upper rim flattened to improve visibility in the straight ahead position, and the horn pushes are integrated into the inner rim where they can be easily actioned. The interior reflects the advanced technology and materials employed in the car's construction, and can be personalized with carbon-fiber or aluminum inserts. The cockpit is noticeably bigger and the already excellent passenger comfort is subsequently increased thanks to a slimmer central tunnel which houses the gear lever turret on the manual version and the F1 console on the paddle-shift version. There is plenty of space behind the rear seats, with a new electrically operated compartment for oddments storage and catch netting to the rear fire wall. The seats have been redesigned for greater lateral containment and the standard electric seats can be substituted by more sporting items with four-point harnesses to order (depending on markets).

Ferrari 612 Scaglietti

Ferrari coachbuilder Sergio Scaglietti, the 4.9-metre long, all-aluminum 612 Scaglietti will blend the perfect combination of performance and comfort in the best traditions of a true Ferrari berlinetta designed to accommodate four people in high-speed luxury and safety.

New for 2007

Although Ferrari has worked hard this year to meet the demands of its sportier clients, that has not stopped it from producing the Model Year 2007 version of the 612 Scaglietti for owners who like ultra-refined elegance as well as performance.

Unveiled at Detroit in 2004, the flagship of the Ferrari range now has an even more impressive standard spec than ever with leather trim in the same color as the seats now extending to the headlining and the side panels running lengthways between the A- and the C-post. The result is a brighter and even more elegant cockpit finish that can be personalized still further courtesy of the Carrozzeria Scaglietti program.

The sumptuous MY07 also boasts a new radio-CD system with satellite navigation system, voice recognition system, MP3 player, Bluetooth and a Compact Flash memory card reader that will allow the owner to store and play 4 GB of music. The system is integrated with a newly refined display on the instrument panel too. To improve handling in tight spaces, rear parking sensors are also now offered as standard.

The Layout

For the first time, Ferrari is offering a 12-cylinder model with both the space-frame chassis and body panels in aluminum, built entirely in-house at Modena, Northern Italy, in the dedicated Scaglietti light-alloy technologies facility. The benefits of this construction method include a 60% increase in structural rigidity and significant weight savings of 60 kg compared to the current 456M GTA - despite the new car's larger dimensions.

The overall layout - engine mounted behind the front axle, gearbox in unit with the differential at the rear - ensures an ideally balanced weight distribution (46% front, 54% rear), as well as permitting a lower centre of gravity, which benefits the dynamic behavior of the car. The performance-orientated handling is enhanced by active damping and a new stability and traction control system, making its first-ever appearance on a Ferrari. The 612 will run on 18 inch diameter front wheels with 245/45 tires and 19 inch rear wheels with 285/40 tires.

The Engine

The 612's 5748 cc, 12-cylinder, 48-valve, 65°V engine is a product of the most advanced Ferrari technology. The all-aluminum power unit has a compression ratio of 11.2:1 and generates a maximum output of 540 bhp at 7,250 rpm, with 434 lb-ft (588 Nm) of torque at 5,250 rpm. The new car is expected to accelerate from standstill to 62 mph (100 km/h) in 4.2 seconds, and to achieve a top speed of 196 mph (315 km/h).

All 612 models are fitted with a six-speed mechanical gearbox, with a choice of manual, and F1-style paddle shifts. Newly developed for the 612, the electro-hydraulic system is known as the F1A. It is designed to deliver both fast and ultra-smooth gear changes.

The Design

Designed by Pininfarina to epitomize dynamism and elegance, the 612 brings the name of Sergio Scaglietti back into public awareness. Scaglietti is the coachbuilder who brought to life some of the most beautiful Ferrari models in the 1950s and 60s. The new 612 features scalloped sides that recall the famous 375 MM he created for Italian film director Roberto Rossellini as a gift to his then-wife movie-star, Ingrid Bergman.

With a significantly longer wheelbase than the 456M, the 612 has been designed to offer ease of entry for rear-seat passengers to an outstandingly luxurious cabin which will accommodate four adults in comfort. On-board comfort is boosted for the driver - by the adoption of 'new generation' ergonomics for the instrument binnacle, steering-wheel mounted and fascia-mounted controls - and for passengers by the fitting of dual-zone climate control and a Hi-End Bose sound system, specifically tailored to suit the unique acoustics of the leather and aluminum trimmed interior.

The capacity of the luggage compartment has been enlarged to 240-litres - 25% bigger than the 456M - and will hold a five-piece Ferrari luggage set or two full sets of golf clubs. The new 612 model is 139 mm longer, 37 mm wider, and 44 mm taller than the 456M, with the wheelbase increased by 350 mm to ensure the latest Ferrari is a genuine 2+2 four seater.

Ferrari FXX

The FXX is the most advanced GT ever created at Maranello and its mission is to involve Ferrari's most valued Clients as genuine Prancing Horse Test Drivers in their own right. The wealth of data and experience gathered in the course of this very special programme will be exceptionally important.

In fact, the feedback from these highly skilled, non-professional Client Test Drivers will be compared and supplemented with suggestions from Michael Schumacher, Rubens Barrichello and Ferrari's professional in-house Test Drivers.

Every Client who signs up for the FXX project by purchasing one of the estimated 20 or so cars being built, will actually be joining Team Ferrari, and will have his driving experiences at the wheel of this new car monitored directly by the Prancing Horse's technicians and specialists.

The FXX has not been homologated for road use and thus will not be a competition model. It will be used exclusively on the track as part of a specific ongoing research and development programme featuring this first ever group of Client Test Drivers.

The FXX is powered by an imposing 6,262 cc V12 engine that can punch out over 800 bhp at 8,500 rpm. Its gearbox is the result of the transfer of F1 strategies, delivering gear change times of under 100 ms. This is almost as fast as the F1 single-seaters, themselves the absolute pinnacle of current technological achievement.

Ferrari Hamann 599 GTB Fiorano

Ferrari and Hamann - a combination to set the pulse racing of all fans of Italian sports cars. The vehicle tuning specialist from Laupheim, Germany, has various new details and a power boost up its sleeve for the latest model from the Maranello stable.

The power is produced by fitting an Hamann high-performance sports header (export only), including racing catalytic converters, to generate an extra 53 bhp. This takes the peak power output of this V12 engine, already familiar from the Ferrari Enzo, up to a majestic 673 bhp. You will rarely encounter more power than this on the open road. As a result, Hamann has reduced the power-to-weight ratio from 2.5 to 2.3 kg per bhp.

To ensure that everyone knows that the King of the Road is about to arrive, Hamann fits a sports rear muffler (export only) with 90 mm tailpipes both right and left. Needless to say, the rear silencer is made from corrosion-resistant stainless steel and generates an even more awe-inspiring sound than its series production counterpart.

In the series production version, the twelve-cylinder Berlinetta already sports a captivatingly and delicately swung body. Hamann adds a few new touches of its own to this body designed by star designer Pininfarina. For instance, Hamann styles the "face" of this front mid-engined sports car with a spoiler, which generates greater downforce on the front axle. To match this perfectly fitting component, which blends harmoniously into the vehicle styling, Hamann also offers side sill panels, lending the 599 GTB a significantly more muscular appearance. The roof is adorned with a further spoiler, which in turn guides the air to an extravagantly designed rear wing. The latter generates downforce on the rear axle and stabilizes the Ferrari at high speeds. Since the 599 GTB is conceptually a race car for the road, Hamann decided to equip the rear end of this Italian muscle car with a three-piece diffuser that matches the rest of the technology. In conjunction with the rear wing, and true to the principle of "a beautiful rear can also endear", the Hamann aerodynamics tuning suite shows its best side. In fact, the 599 GTB tuned and styled the Hamann way is truly a sight to behold from all sides.

Hamann lands a perfect hit with the aerodynamics, which do nothing to disrupt the original design, but lend added impact to a number of details in striking style. Batman would certainly choose the Hamann Ferrari 599 GTB as the car he drives to work in. All aerodynamic components are available in fiber glass or Carbon-Kevlar.

Ferrari Novitec F430