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Monthly Archives: April 2014

FERNANDO ALONSO BELIEVES FERRARI F1 TEAM IS UNDERPERFORMING IN MANY AREAS

Fernando Alonso, Formula 1, Ferrari

Ferrari Formula 1 racer, Fernando Alonso has expressed that the team’s new car has been underperforming in “many areas” for the first part of the 2014 season.

Things did not look good for Ferrari for the first three races of the 2014 season. Things began to look better for Ferrari during the Chinese Grand Prix where Fernando Alonso scored the first podium appearance for Ferrari in the 2014 season with a 3rd place finish in Shanghai. Even a podium finish was not enough to lift Alonso’s hopes that things have turned around in 2014.

“The car was under-performing in many areas – it was not just one problem,” Alonso explained after the race.

“We need to be more efficient, have better aerodynamics, better traction, better power. We lack some big performance in the first races.”

“[In China the improvement] was nothing really big in one area, just small steps here, small steps there – better power delivery, better software, putting everything in place, all the settings, and giving a little bit more aero efficiency and a little bit more power.”

“We have bigger margins, because we started in a lower performance, but we cannot dream too much because people will not be watching TV from here to Barcelona.”

“The other teams will bring a couple of tenths to Barcelona, [so] we need to bring a couple of tenths, plus something, if we want to catch up.”

“That’s the challenge we are facing now. It’s not that we need to develop the car at a normal rate; we need to do the normal developments, plus something.”

LAFERRARI XX RUMORED TO HAVE LAPPED NURBURGRING IN 6:35

LaFerrari XX, Ferrari, Nurburgring

Rumors are swirling this morning that the barely commenced LaFerrari XX project has unofficially set a track record at the Nurburgring for track-only vehicles with a stunning time of 6:35. If this rumor proves to be true, then the LaFerrari XX will have surpassed the previous record set by the Pagani Zonda R by 12 seconds making the LaFerrari XX the fastest production-based, track-exclusive car to ever take laps around the Nurburgring. This record will also smash all previous Ferrari track-based records set by the Ferrari 599XX, the only other track-only Ferrari to break the seven minute barrier at the “Ring”.

FERRARI 458 SPECIALE IS THE PINNICAL OF PERFECTION

458 Speciale, Ferrari,

As with all Ferrari special series, the 458 Speciale boasts an array of advanced technical solutions that make it a completely unique model designed for owners looking for an even more focused sports car offering extreme driving emotions. The innovations span the entire car and include both Ferrari patents and world firsts, particularly with regard to the engine, active aerodynamics and vehicle dynamics. In fact, they set the 458 Speciale apart from the 458 Italia from which it is derived, to an extent unprecedented in the previous Challenge Stradale and 430 Scuderia special series.

Whether on the road or on the track, drivers will feel immediately at one with the 458 Speciale thanks to the speed with which it responds to every input and the consequently natural control it offers, even in extreme maneuvers. This finely-tuned handling balance delivers an intense driving experience behind the wheel of Ferrari’s most high performance V8.

Ferrari drew heavily on its extensive F1 knowledge at the design, process and control stages, and the engine is produced in the factory’s in –house foundry using the same processes and machinery employed by the F1 team to deliver complex components with the necessary extreme structural and dimensional characteristics.

Optimized combustion chamber fluid-dynamics, new intake geometries, and a new cam profile are just some of the adjustments that allowed the designers to meet their targets. Other significant factors were the revision of various engine components: new materials for the pistons and the con-rod bushings, for example. The crankshaft geometry was also redesigned along with the intake system. This very special engine has an equally unique soundtrack that is seductive and uncompromising both inside and outside the car, thanks to the position of the tailpipes, the silencer configuration and a redesigned inlet tract.

LAPO ELKANN WINTER PHOTO SHOOT WITH FERRARI FF AND 458 ITALIA

Lapo Elkann, Ferrari FF, Ferrari 458 Italia

Once again Lapo Elkann, heir to Fiat Automobiles, has subjected us to another photo shoot, this time posing with a Ferrari FF as if the two are skiing and then with a camo wrapped Ferrari 458 Italia where Elkann is doing his best Bond impersonation. These photos were taken for an upcoming issue of L’Uomo Vouge.

Lapo Elkann is a New York-born Italian entrepreneur and Former Fiat marketing manager who is currently manager of brand promotion at Fiat Autombiles, group Fiat, and is a founding partner of LA Holding and current president Italia Independent and Independent Ideas. Elkann is the grandson of Italian industrialist and principal shareholder of Fiat, Gianni Agnelli.

ROBB REPORT MAGAZINE NAMES FERRARI F12 BERLINETTA TOP BUY FOR 2014

F12 Berlinetta, Robb Report, Ferrari

The folks over at Robb Report Magazine have selected the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta as “Car of the Year.” The 730-horsepower V12 coupe capable of reaching speeds of 211 mph, was the “unprecedented landslide decision” among the 100 judges who participated in driving 14 luxury cars thru Napa Valley, California. Other vehicles that were in competition for the prestigious award included, the Audi R8 V10, Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 Roadster, Aston Martin Vanquish Volante, BMW M6 Gran Coupe, Bentley Flying Spur, Porsche Cayman S, Porsche Panamera Turbo, Jaguar F-Type V8 S, Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Coupe, Mercedes-Benz S550, Maserati Quattroporte GTS, Range Rover Autobiography and the SRT Viper.

The Robb Report is an American, English-language, luxury-lifestyle magazine featuring products – including automobiles, real estate and watches for wealthy individuals, which the publisher claims enjoy an average net worth of $1.8 million and an annual average salary of $346,000.

FERRARI 458 SPIDER SEEN WITH LAFERRARI IN MONACO

The French Rivera is known for its lavish yachts and exotic cars, even with that being said, it’s always nice to see two examples of Ferrari excellence together cruising the streets of Monaco. Both examples are done in Corso Rosso Red with black rims that provide a complimentary accent to these already impressive machines.

2015 FERRARI CALIFORNIA T WILL DISPLAY F12 INSPIRED STYLING

Ferrari, California T

The body design of the 2015 Ferrari California T will be heavily inspired by its faster and more powerful sibling, the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta. This new styling is the result of cooperation between Ferrari and Pininfarina. The grill and lower front fascia will remain similar to the out-going California, while the headlights on the new California will closely resemble those of the F12 Berlinetta along with an aggressive new hood. Other noticeable changes include a tribute being paid to the legendary 250 Testa Rossa in the form of pontoon-like fender flares that visually tie the front and rear ends together. The taillights will remain similar to the current model; however the new California will trade in the stacked quad-exhaust pipe layout for a more traditional quad-exhaust system that can be found on the F12 Berlinetta. Expect to find the reverse lights relocated inside the taillights similar to the setup on the F12.

REWIND REVIEW: FERRARI 288 GTO

Ferrari, 288 GTO,

The Ferrari 288 GTO was one of the most highly anticipated models to be released by Ferrari. Once debuted at the Geneva Motor Show in 1984, the 288 GTO created the “instant collectible” market for automobiles – those rare examples of automotive excellence that have always commanded a price greater than the original sticker.

The Ferrari 288 GTO received its name from having a 2.8-liter engine of eight cylinders with the GTO being a direct reference to the 250 GTO race car of the 1960’s. The body of the 288 GTO was designed by Pininfarina design chief Leonardo Fioravanti who used the Ferrari 308 GTB for the basis before adding the styling of the 250 GTO.

The engine of the 288 GTO was equipped with two Japanese IHI turbochargers along with an oil cooler, dry-sump lubrication, intercoolers to reduce the air temperature of the twin turbos and an electronic injection and ignition system derived from Ferrari’s Formula 1 competition racers delivering a staggering 400 horsepower making the 288 GTO 130 horsepower greater than the 308 GTB. Additional performance enhancements included an independent front and rear wishbone suspension; coil springs over tube shocks and antiroll bars.

2015 FERRARI CALIFORNIA T HAS BIG BOOST IN POWER

2015 Ferrari, California T, Turbocharged Ferrari

The 2015 Ferrari California T was recently unveiled at the Geneva Motor show with some significant changes over the previous model when it comes to power. For the first time since the Ferrari F40, a turbocharged engine has found its way under the hood of a Ferrari. This is the first of many models expected from Ferrari to include turbocharged engines.

The 2015 Ferrari California T will have a smaller displacement of a 3.9-liter V8 versus the previous model’s 4.3-liter naturally aspirated engine. With this smaller displacement comes a huge power boost in the form of a twin-turbocharged V8 engine that produces 552 hp and 557 lb-ft of torque, an increase of 69 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque over the previous California. This new turbocharged engine is likely to be paired with the currently used seven-speed dual-clutch automatic. Ferrari claims the California T will accelerate from 0-60 mph in just 3.6 seconds with a top speed of 196 mph.

Additional upgrades for the 2015 Ferrari California T include an upgrade to the steering, suspension, and braking systems. The 2015 Ferrari California T will have a new steering box, new springs, and the latest-generation Magnaride suspension. New carbon-ceramic brakes have been added to the California T that Ferrari Says can bring the California to a stop from 60 mph in just 111 feet.

PININFARINA TO BUILD SERGIO ROADSTER

Ferrari, Pininfarina, Sergio Roadster,

It appears that the radically designed, roofless and windshield-free sports car named after the late Sergio Pininfarina is one step closer to having a limited production run. Single digit numbers are expected to be made with a production run consisting of possibly 5 to 7 vehicles carrying a price tag solidly in the seven figure range.

The Sergio is based off of the Ferrari 458 Spider, using the 458 Spider platform will make a limited run much easier to produce.

New 3-D modeling software has allowed Pinifarina to develop the Sergio concept in less than five months. This software will also help make this concept financially viable to build with an expected price tag of about $4.5 million.

The Sergio takes inspiration from Pininfarina designed cars of the 1960’s and 1970 and was placed on display at the Geneva Motor Show next to a 1965 Dina Berlinetta Speciale concept. These inspirations can be seen in the arched fender and forward-projecting rear. The Sergio has several modern aerodynamic aspects such as the front spoiler, hood deflector and side inlets that are all wrapped together by a black insert. All practical components of the exterior such as door handles are all tucked away leaving the body of the Sergio uninterrupted by necessary components.

The most noticeable and obvious difference in this build is the lack of front windshield. This design on fast glance can make it hard to tell if you are looking at the front or the back of the vehicle including since the Sergio does come equipped with a rear windshield that is built into the roll bar. If this vehicle does become available for purchase, Pininafarina will have to make adjustments to the front nose in order to comply with pedestrian protection laws in Europe and Asia. In addition, the Sergio will come with driver and passenger helmets equipped with googles to serve as protection from the lack of a front windshield.

Paolo Pininfarina, chairman of the Pininfarina Group had this to say “My father would be proud of this concept car because it expresses the aesthetic values that always inspired him: the purity of the lines, the harmony of form, and balance.” “Furthermore, he would be happy with this latest concept on Ferrari base, a brand to which we are related by a history that has helped define the most beautiful cars of all time in an evolution that has lasted 60 years and shows no sign of ending.

2015 FERRARI 458 SPECIALE

458 Speciale, 458 Italia, Ferrari

The Ferrari 458 Speciale is a high-performance variant of the Ferrari 458 Italia. This version of the Italia includes several exterior upgrades that include a new set of performance wheels, a body kit and a larger front grille. The inside revisions are centered on reducing weight, this is achieved by removing several of the non-essential items from the cabin. The touring seats of the 458 Italia are replaced with carbon fiber racing seats covered in Alcantara, other luxury items such as plush upholstery and a radio are missing altogether giving the 458 Speciale a sense of track-only entitlement. Weight reduction on the Speciale makes this variant almost 500 pounds lighter than the Ferrari 458 Italia. The 458 Speciale packs an additional 34 horsepower under the hood making this 4.5-liter V8 capable of producing 596 hp! With all this attention being paid to performance, there is no surprise that the Ferrari 458 Speciale has already sold out for the 2015 model year.

JETHRO BOVINGDON DRIVES THE STELVIO PASS IN FERRARI 458 SPIDER

Not long ago British sports car writer Jethro Bovingdon crashed a Ferrari FF into a low stone curb. So when we found out that Jethro had been invited by Chris Harris to drive a brand new Ferrari 458 Spider through the Stelvio Pass, a road that is well… basically lined with low stone walls, we felt it was appropriate to share. This video was shot for a new Car & Driver segment called the Car and Driver Abroad video series and marks Jethro Bovingdon’s first trip to the Stelvio Pass.
The Stelvio Pass has been referred to as the “World’s Greatest Road”, at over 9,000 feet high, it is one of the highest roads in Europe, and is responsible for connecting northern Italy to southern Switzerland. Not only does the altitude and location provide for amazing scenery, they help illustrate what makes this road so special, the curves. The Stelvio pass, constructed by the Austrians in 1820 consists of 48 hairpin turns covering over 16 miles of road that was built long before the creation of the automobile and lined with a beautiful, yet low stone wall that protects the driver from very steep drop-offs.

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