Design house Pininfarina has worked with F1 champion Emerson Fittipaldi to produce a limited-edition track car
7 March 2017

The Pininfarina Fittipaldi EF7 is a 600bhp naturally-aspirated V8-powered track car, launched in partnership with twice-F1 champion Emerson Fittipaldi and the Italian design house. It's on show in Geneva.

Fittipaldi hopes the EF7 will offer easy-to-access driving thrills for drivers looking for a simple circuit-day ownership experience.

Styled by Pininfarina and engineered by HWA, the German race engineering company owned by Hans Werner Aufrecht, a founder of AMG, the EF7 is built around a two-piece carbon fibre tub and a brand new 4.8-litre V8 engine mated to a six-speed Hewland gearbox.

"We are designing a high-revving engine that makes a great noise and is connected to a very easy to drive chassis. We want people to be able to feel it on the track and be simple to drive," said Fittipaldi, who won the F1 championship in 1972 and 1974 and is a double Indy 500 winner.

"I will help the owners set-up the car and then the day at the circuit should be simple, just set-up the tyre pressures and no need for a team of engineers to keep it running," he said.

A production run of 25 cars is planned, but prices have yet to be revealed. HWA will build the EF7 at its Afalterbach factory.

Fittipaldi is targeting a sub-1000kg kerb weight, and to keep weight down, the engine and gearbox will be bolted directly to the carbon tub and engineered as a structural member to support suspension loads.

Traction control and anti-lock brakes will be engineered and set-up to make the EF7 "very driveable".

The carbon tub is designed to be very safe in a side-impact and the cockpit sized to be roomy and comfortable to sit-in.

Front and rear wishbone suspension with inboard mounted coil-over shocks will feature, the fronts actuated by pull-rods, the rears by push-roads.

"The weight target is very severe," said the EF7’s chief engineer Hubert Hugle, "but we are confident of getting very close to it.”

HWA is designing the new 90-degree V8 to develop peak power at 9000 rpm and to feature a flat-plane crank for increased response and dry-sump lubrication to avoid surge in high-G cornering.

The EF7 project will also launch Fittipaldi Motors, which the Brazilian race-driver hopes might develop into a wider range of models. 

While only a few drivers will get to experience the EF7 in real life, thousands more can drive the car virtually, as the EF7 is Pininfarina's entry into the Vision Gran Turismo project, which invited car makers to submit their cars to be driven in the Gran Turismo game series. Those who do buy the car will be invited to personalise its interior and exterior, and will benefit from unique track days with Fittipaldi and other racing professionals.

Fittipaldi Motors is supported by impact investment company Dakia Global, one of whose aims is to develop cutting-edge automotive technology.

Julian Rendell

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8 March 2017
Fittipaldi hopes the EF7 will offer easy-to-access driving thrills for drivers looking for a simple circuit-day ownership experience. www.gari.pk

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