Ferrari has been working on an electrically driven 4x4 system for its future models, senior company sources have confirmed.
The various alternatives for the hybrid system were first revealed on the Autocar website earlier this year but Ferrari says the final hybrid design will be used for front engined GT models and will drive the front wheels.
However, the source says that the first models equipped with the system will not appear before 2014. The aim of the 4x4 system – which will use motors mounted inboard of the front wheels – will be to improve handling rather than improve fuel economy.
Insiders say that using torquey electric motors to power the front wheels will offer significant improvements in acceleration and much improved cornering prowess, because the torque delivery to each front wheel can be carefully controlled.
Although this new drivetrain won’t be available from launch, it will eventually become an option on the replacement for the 612, which has been caught testing here at high altitude in Europe.