Ferrari CEO Amedeo Felisa has confirmed that the replacement for the Ferrari Enzo will have a mid-mounted V12 and use a carbonfibre chassis.
Speaking at the launch of the Ferrari 458 Spider, Felisa told Autocar that the car may also employ hybrid technology and confirmed: “Ferrari is testing hybrid prototypes.”
Felisa admitted that some of the knowledge gleaned from the development of Ferrari’s KERS in Formula One could prove relevant to road cars. However, he said any future Ferrari hybrid system, “must focus on improving efficiency and not just be about performance”.
The introduction of hybrid technology on an Enzo replacement would be consistent with Ferrari’s philosophy of using such cars as test beds for nascent technology. As Felisa confirmed, Ferrari hybrids are already on test; a California hybrid mule was uncovered by Autocar in July.
Any future hybrid system would be mated to a mid-mounted V12 petrol engine. With Ferrari’s production V12 range now front-mid-mounted, Felisa admitted that the Enzo replacement would be the car to satisfy the purists. Both the F50 of 1995 and the Enzo of 2002 featured mid-mounted V12s.
Some elements of the Millechili concept could make their way on to the new car. The F50 and Enzo boasted carbon composite construction, using technology derived from Ferrari’s F1 program. “For a small volume car such as the Enzo where the focus is on the minimum weight possible it is the correct solution,” said Felisa. Ferrari produced just 349 F50s and 400 examples of the Enzo.
However, Ferrari will not follow McLaren’s lead and introduce a carbonfibre monocoque on regular production models. “Today it does not make sense,” Felisa said. “The weight benefits compared with an aluminium chassis [such as the 458’s] are very small and the costs are huge. In the event of an accident, it is also very difficult to identify whether the chassis has been damaged.”
Ferrari chairman Luca di Montezemolo confirmed to Autocar last week that the Enzo successor would be revealed by the end of 2012, although the car’s name was still to be decided.