Saturday, January 28, 2006
The Ferrari SuperAmerica
According to the WSJ, Business is very good at Ferrari:
"At Ferrari, every day is nirvana. The Ferrari SuperAmerica, the rebirth of a legendary 12-cylinder model, is sold out for North America. Customers for Ferrari's other models wait months to get their cars. Ferrari's main challenge, when it comes to simply selling cars, is managing the waiting list for the 1,500 or so cars it delivers in North America each year.
Of course, Ferrari is exotic by any dimension. Its cars are rare, extremely expensive and not terribly practical. The FXX, a $1.1 million super car that was the star of Ferrari's exhibit at the Detroit Auto Show, is effectively a Formula One race car with an 800-horsepower, 12-cylinder engine. Ferrari plans to build only about 20, and offer them to the cream of its clientele, who will be able to drive the car on tracks at special Ferrari events. The company says the car won't be adapted for road use.
Turning the big car into an open driver via a rather unique mechanism: TheSuperAmerica's roof does a backflip:
"The Fioravanti-patented rotating roof concept allows the Superamerica driver to electrically drop the top in 10 seconds flat, making it the world’s fastest convertible berlinetta (199-mph top speed).
The Superamerica’s unusual electric roof has been dubbed Revocromico to highlight the unique combination of its rearward rotation movement and electrochromic technology. It has a carbon-fibre structure and the boot capacity remains unchanged whether the roof is open or closed too. The glass rear window also acts as a highly effective wind deflector when the roof is open."
But fancy electronic and mechanical gee-gaws are meaningless on a machine that doesn't have the goods. What are the specs on the SA?
"Derived from the 575M Maranello, the Superamerica is available with either an F1-style or manual gearbox. Its big 12-cylinder engine has been boosted to deliver 540 hp too. The new car can also be fitted with the GTC Handling package which offers Ferrari’s very latest high-tech features including carbon ceramic brakes."
(wipe drool away)
Lastly, the nomenclature was used years earlier in the 410; So as not to confuse you with the earlier model of the same name: Ferrari 410 Superamerica (1955-1959), which was gorgeous in its own right:
The Ferrari Club
The Lines Are Long for a SuperAmerica, And That's Just Fine With the Car Maker
January 23, 2006; Page D2
First Look: Ferrari Superamerica
Motortrend, November 24, 2004
Maranello, 24 November 2004
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