Ferrari have often re-written the rule book when creating a new model in their line-up. They have a certain need to not look at what everyone else is doing and create a car that they want to create, often whether at first glance it makes sense or not.
The 4 seat Ferrari FF is the perfect example of the Italian craziness coming through. There have been luxurious fast 4-seater cars before, the Porsche Panamera, Aston Martin Rapide, Bentley Continental GT to name but a few, but Ferrari decided their version would take a different direction entirely. It was their first hatchback and first four-wheel drive car the prancing horse had ever produced for a start, but it is the four-wheel drive bit that is puzzling.
Traditional four-wheel drive cars send the power from the engine, to a central transfer box, then distributed through two prop shafts to drive each axle. Ferrari decided that using this method would mean the engine had to be mounted higher up, as the shafts need to be mounted under the engine, which would raise the centre of gravity and therefore ruin the handling as well as affect the styling of the car. Ferrari then decided the best thing to do was to send the power from the engine to a rear mounted gearbox and then to the rear wheels. Sensors would then monitor the amount of grip the rear wheels have and if it is needed, a small 2 speed gearbox being driven by a crankshaft at the front of the engine is engaged, and the front wheels are then also driven to help out.
Sounds very complicated, especially when the front wheels can only take a maximum of 30% of the power at any time, and if you exceed 130mph they disengage as they can’t cope with the speed. It also seems slightly unnecessary when cars like the Panamera and Continental GT also offer four-wheel drive and it hasn’t seemed to have affected their handling or styling so much. But if that’s the way they want to do things, who are we to argue with them.
So, does this over complicated four-wheel drive system mean that Ferrari have made a mistake with the FF? Quite the opposite.
Unless you’re planning to track your FF, and quite frankly why would you, none of the drive system’s foibles are noticeable in any way shape or form. Not only that, but the reassurance of the four-wheel drive means that you aren’t afraid to take the car out if adverse weather means you’d leave most supercars at home. With a 6.3 litre naturally aspirated V12 engine producing 651bhp, the FF can accelerate from 0-62mph in just 3.7 seconds and keeps on going to an impressive 208mph.
But just as impressive as the speed and power, is the ability of the FF to be the perfect everyday car, and for every occasion. The steering is light, the fine Italian leather seating is GT car comfortable, and the hatchback and foldable rear seating means the car can be as practical as an estate car. In fact, even with the seats up, there is more boot space than a Renault Scenic. The soundtrack and beautiful good looks mean that not only can it be the perfect supercar when you’re posing around Harrods at lunchtime, but you can do the school run on the way home and even pick the dog up from the grooming salon too; as long as it doesn’t scratch the leather.
The FF could quite easily be the perfect car for every occasion. It has supercar pace and aesthetics, family car practicality, GT car cruising ability, and yet remains a classy alternative to not only other luxurious four seat fast cars, but also luxury performance SUV’s.
Our 2016 Ferrari FF 6.3 V12 HELE auto is finished in Grigio Titanio metallic and has Nero fine leather interior with Filo Speciale Grigio Chiaro stitching. It comes with an extensive list of optional features to include 20” forged wheels, Carbon fibre interior trim, Rear entertainment pack, Scuderia shields, panoramic sunroof, privacy glass, AFS system, passenger display and much more. It comes with a full Ferrari main dealer service history and comes with the remainder of the 7 year Ferrari service plan.
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