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Eight things you need to know about the new Ferrari 812 Superfast

The 2017 Ferrari 812 Superfast.

What are we looking at here?

This is the Ferrari 812 Superfast, an evolution of the brand's (extremely) well-regarded F12 Berlinetta coupe and F12tdf spinoff.

It blends Ferrari's classic front-mounted V12 engine layout with cutting-edge tech that should make it one of the most remarkable cars on the road.

The 2017 Ferrari 812 Superfast.

Tell us more about the engine

We've got a 6.5-litre V12 under the bonnet, one that produces 588kW of power at 8500rpm, as well as 718Nm of torque. That's well more than double the power of the latest Porsche 911, 43kW more than the outgoing F12 Berlinetta and 44kW more than the new Lamborghini Aventador S.

Ferrari says the gains were made by introducing a new high-pressure fuel delivery system as well as variable-length air inlets developed for Formula 1.

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The 2017 Ferrari 812 Superfast.

Importantly, the engine is a free-breathing, naturally aspirated creation free from the corruption of turbocharging - and rumour has it this will be Ferrari's last pure V12 model before hybrid power and turbos inevitably take over. That could make the Superfast something of a collector's item in the same vein as Ferrari's 458 Speciale coupe and convertible.

So, it's fast, then?

Yep. Able to hit 0-100kmh in 2.9 seconds before reaching a top speed in excess of 340kmh.

Will it go around corners?

The Superfast offers an updated version of the four-wheel-steer "Virtual Short Wheelbase" system originally offered in the F12tdf, along with a fresh take on Ferrari's Side Slip Control suite of traction and stability systems.

Coupled with a new electronic power steering system, Ferrari says the result is a car that is "easier to handle and even more thrilling to exploit", which sounds promising.

What about the styling?

This new machine was designed in-house by Ferrari (as opposed to using external sources such as Pininfarina), building on the F12's classic fastback lines.

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The easiest way to see that this is the updated car is by looking at the rear, which now has four taillamps instead of two, and no F1-style rain light at the bottom of the bumper. A more aggressive front end with squinting headlamps and a larger grille opening speaks to the car's intent, and the previous model's active front aero flaps have been hidden under the front floor. Ferrari reworked the F12's "aero bridge" front guards while introducing a clever aerodynamic bypass system to increase downforce without the use of an unsightly spoiler. Arguably less elegant than the F12 Berlinetta, the Superfast dials up the aggression to an appropriate degree.

And the inside?

There are fewer changes in the cabin, which is home to a new steering wheel, instrument clusters and driver controls. Ferrari says it has updated the car's infotainment system while resculpting the dashboard to offer a more sophisticated look.

Expect the 812 to be a more comfortable proposition than the track-focused F12tdf, following in the footsteps of the 550 Maranello and 599 GTB as a cross-continent touring machine.

What about that name?

While 812 Superfast might sound a bit naff, but the moniker pays tribute to classic models in the Ferrari catalogue including the 500 Superfast. That car made its debut at the Geneva motor show in 1964, where it crowned the range as an ultra-exclusive gran turismo powered by a 5-litre V12 engine with 400 horsepower (just under 300kW). Ferrari made only three dozen examples of the 500 Superfast, selling them to social elite such as British actor Peter Sellers and the Shah of Iran.

Who will buy the new one?

Ferrari says the car is "aimed at clients demanding the most powerful and exclusive Ferrari in the range: an uncompromising sports car that will deliver exhilarating driving both on road and track yet also be comfortable enough to allow its owners to enjoy it as an all-round experience".

There will no doubt be a waiting list for the new machine, and you can bet the first places in the queue will go to people who have a history with the brand.

2017 Ferrari 812 Superfast specifications

Price: TBC
Engine: 6.5-litre V12 petrol
Power: 588kW at 8500rpm
Torque: 718Nm at 7000rpm
Transmission: Seven-speed automatic, rear-wheel-drive
Fuel use: 14.9L/100km.

drive.com.au

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