Seven time F1 champ snapped shaking down a Ferrari 599 at the 'Ring

Autocar can reveal that, contrary to what Fiat's adverts would have you believe, former doyen of F1 Michael Schumacher is neither delivering TVs nor chauffeuring school children around in his abundant spare time; he's helping Ferrari to develop their road cars. Or at least he was yesterday.Autocar's Nurburgring spies took these pictures of a red Ferrari 599 GTB lapping the Nordschleife yesterday afternoon (May 24). Awestruck by the driving they witnessed, they report realising the identity of the driver only on closer inspection. Check out our wallpapers section, or click here, to see a version of their shots at larger scale; we think you'll agree that the evidence is almost indisputable.

A change of direction for Ferrari?

Nurburgring testing is an unusual move for Ferrari. The prancing horse tends to do the majority of its development work at its own Fiorano test circuit, which is shorter, flatter and ultimately less demanding on a car than the 'Ring.So do these pictures signal a change of approach at Maranello? And what about for the 'red baron'; with his natural ability and familiarity with the Nordschleife, is he to become to Ferrari what Walter Rohl is to bitter rival Porsche – a kind of overarching, high-profile, development guru? Only time will tell – but if so, remember you read it here first.

Our Verdict

Ferrari 599
We’ll spare the 911 Turbo the ignominy of comparison times, because the Ferrari has moved the game onto another level

The Ferrari 599 offers mind-blowing pace and handling. Quite possibly the best Ferrari of its generation

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • BMW M240i
    First Drive
    26 October 2016
    More power, more speed, more noise: BMW's revamped and renamed performance coupé is sweeter than ever
  • Volkswagen Up High 1.0 TSI
    First Drive
    26 October 2016
    A new turbocharged three-pot injects some fun into VW's slick city car and makes it a more rounded package
  • 2017 Vauxhall Insignia prototype first drive
    First Drive
    25 October 2016
    We review the next-generation Vauxhall Insignia and find that, while still disguised and giving little away about its appearance, it's encouragingly good to drive
  • 2016 Ford Kuga ST-Line 1.5 Ecoboost 182
    First Drive
    25 October 2016
    The Kuga ST-Line is enjoyable to drive, but this version of the 1.5-litre Ecoboost engine doesn't suit Ford's SUV
  • Car review
    21 October 2016
    Can Seat’s first SUV impress, even with the heavy burden of expectation?