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First Look: Ferrari FF

A practical Ferrari?

by on Mar.01, 2011

Ferrari goes practical with the new FF.

A practical Ferrari?  If the very concept doesn’t scare you off, read on for more about the Italian automaker’s newest offering, which is making its world premiere at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show.

There will be plenty who view the new Ferrari FF as an oxymoron, no doubt.  But there’s no question the maker from Maranello wanted to do more than just evolve the outgoing 612.  Instead, it has come up with a wagon, er hatchback, er shooting brake.  Well, expect a lot of different descriptions to apply to what might be thought of as Ferrari’s interpretation of the Porsche Panamera.

In the Know!

While the looks might take a while to grow on you, the new FF otherwise lives up to its pedigree.  It’s the most powerful 4-seater the Italian marque has ever produced, a direct-injects 6.3-liter V12 under the FF’s long, low hood, churning out 651 horsepower and 504 lb-ft of torque.  You’ll see 60 in less than 3.7 seconds, Ferrari claims, on the way to a top speed of 208 mph.

The Ferrari FF is the most powerful 4-seater the Maranello maker has ever produced.

The name, by the way, is a double acronym, short for both Ferrari Four, and Ferrari Four-wheel-drive.

The replacement for the outgoing Scaglietti 612, the new Ferrari FF, says the maker, “represents not so much an evolution as a true revolution.”

That starts with the direct-injects 6.3-liter V12 under the FF’s long, low hood, which churns out 651 horsepower and 504 lb-ft of torque.  You’ll see 60 in less than 3.7 seconds, Ferrari claims, on the way to a top speed of 208 mph.

“With this car, we open a new page in the Ferrari history book,” proclaimed Ferrari capo-di-capo Luca di Montezemelo, during the new model’s Geneva preview.  “It is a racing car, (and) a car you can drive every single day.”

Putting all that power to the ground becomes easier with the new all-wheel-drive system linked through an F1-style double-clutch gearbox.  Called 4RM, Ferrari says it is half the weight of a conventional AWD system – and not only biases torque to the rear but helps set up a 47:53 weight balance.

By holding down the mass of the 4RM driveline the new Ferrari FF comes in just under 4,000 pounds – about 100 pounds under the old 612.  That helps it cut the Scaglietti’s 0 – 60 times by a full second and add another 9 mph at the top end.

Ferrari is the latest high-performance offering to go the "practical" route.

The drivetrain is electronically linked to other dynamic control systems to maximize stability, and, says the maker, “delivers record levels of performance on all terrains and in all conditions.”

The body, penned by Pininfarina, is definitely not your typical Ferrari from a visual perspective, opting for the very untraditional two-box hatchback.  But the Italian’s did honor their pledge never to produce a four-door, despite current industry trends in that direction.

Could the word, “functional,” be applied to the new Ferrari FF?  Not only is it designed to take on just about any road condition, but the new offering has nearly as much cargo capacity as a small wagon.

 

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