The first and most difficult challenge Ferrari always faces when it decides to develop a new model is to push the boundaries of its own achievements yet again. This challenge is made all the tougher when the task at hand involves designing a new 12-cylinder engine, the power unit that hailed the start of the glorious Prancing Horse story 70 years ago in 1947. On this occasion, intensive research and development focused on exploiting Ferrari’s wealth of track-derived engineering know-how has produced the 812 Superfast, designed to offer its drivers both benchmark performance across the board and the most riveting and rewarding driving experience possible. With its output boosted to 800 cv, 60 more than the F12berlinetta, the 812 Superfast is the most powerful and fastest road-going Ferrari ever built (with the exception, of course, of the rear-engined special limited-series 12-cylinders). The 812 Superfast thus ushers in a new era in Ferrari 12-cylinder history, and, in doing so, builds on the invaluable legacies of the F12berlinetta and F12tdf. To make full use of that huge power and to guarantee perfect weight distribution, the car exploits a highly evolved transaxle architecture that couples a front-mounted engine with a rear-mounted transmission. It is also the first Ferrari equipped with EPS (Electric Power Steering).
To do so, they decided to focus their efforts principally on optimising the intake system and combustion efﬁciency to fully exploit the increase in the engine’s displacement from 6.2 to 6.5 litres. These aspects increased the maximum amount of air that could be drawn into the engine (and thus its power output) thereby boosting its efﬁciency.
The development process resulted in a maximum power output of 800 cv at 8,500 rpm, a new benchmark for the Ferrari range, in addition to a speciﬁc power output of 123 cv/l, a completely unprecedented ﬁgure for an engine front-mounted in a production car.
Maximum torque is 718 Nm @ 7,000 rpm – a completely unprecedented achievement for a naturally-aspirated Ferrari production engine. A signiﬁcant 80% of that maximum torque is available at just 3,500 rpm, improving both ﬂexibility and pick-up at lower revs. The shape of the power curve, which rises constantly all the way to the maximum revs of 8,500 rpm, and the rapidity with which engine speed increases, thanks to low inertia, give occupants the feeling of boundless power and acceleration.
The development guidelines aimed to achieve exceptionally high aerodynamic efﬁciency ﬁgures through boosting of the downforce that inﬂuences a car’s stability without increasing drag as the latter would negatively impact fuel consumption and maximum speed. The aerodynamic coefﬁcient values delivered by the 812 Superfast are a signiﬁcant improvement on those of the F12berlinetta.
Whether mechanically activated (active mobile aerodynamics) or activated by the pressure of the air itself (passive mobile aerodynamics), guarantee very low drag values.
To the side of the air intakes for engine and brake cooling, is a turning vane on the front bumper which is designed to channel air ﬂows striking the front of car to ensure they hug its ﬂanks, thereby reducing the width of the car’s wake. This in turn appreciably reduces overall drag. A spoiler on tail of the car generates rear downforce.
Three pairs of curved dams were adopted on the underbody and are responsible for 30% of the increase in downforce compared to the F12berlinetta, as already achieved on the special series F12tdf.