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LaFerrari, More Hybrids To Come, And The 458 Speciale

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

The DriveWrite Archives Topics:  Ferrari

LaFerrari, More Hybrids To Come, And The 458 Speciale

Geoff Maxted
August 23, 2013

It seems we just can’t keep Ferrari’s Luca Di Montezemolo quiet these days. Yesterday he spoke of the past, today the future - and the future for Ferrari will be hybrid technology.

The Italian company plans more hybrid vehicles to follow the one million Euro LaFerrari (pictured) as the manufacturer works to attract more wealthy buyers to the brand. Luca says, "I don't believe in the electric cars, but I strongly believe in hybrids," during a television interview at the manufacturer's headquarters in Maranello, Italy.

Fiat Group's most desirable brand will also look at expanding sales beyond vehicles, such as licensing merchandise with its prancing-horse logo. Di Montezemolo goes on, "We have a lot of parallel activities that can increase revenues without being obliged to produce more cars,”

Ferrari, the most profitable division at Fiat Group, unveiled the LaFerrari sports car at the Geneva auto show in March and the model is part of Montezemolo's strategy of boosting Ferrari's profitability with high-end, customized versions of its vehicles, while restricting their availability to enhance the brand's reputation for exclusivity.

"I want to have different Ferraris for different Ferraristi," the Chairman said. He should know the business by now as he has transformed Ferrari into a truly successful brand, accounting for about 10 percent of Fiat's 2012 operating earnings.

Ferrari plans to reduce deliveries by 400 cars this year to about 6,900 vehicles. Asked whether the company is planning more hybrid models, Di Montezemolo said, "The answer is yes, but without exceeding what customers want”.

Ferrari plans to introduce the 458 Speciale sports car at the Frankfurt Motor Show next month, a spokesperson said yesterday in a statement. The 605hp model, which the company called its most aerodynamically efficient production car ever, does the traffic light sprint in as little as 3 seconds. Equipped with a V8 engine, the 458 Speciale will have a starting price of about €240,000. Place your order and start saving.

Ferrari is part of the ever increasing trend towards offering high performance cars with reduced emissions. Porsche will present the production version of the 918 Spyder next month at the Frankfurt Motor Show, while BMW will showcase the i8 plug-in hybrid supercar. Land Rover will start selling its first hybrids in the UK in September.

It seems like a good idea to test cutting edge technology on the expensive cars first - in the same way that F1 science filters down - because the well-to-do are more willing to cough up the readies. Whilst electric cars continue to struggle it looks like hybrids, with the benefits of extra power from electricity are the true path to green automotive enlightenment.

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