Ferrari 812 Competizione

The most powerful V12 Ferrari is always a huge story. It just happened again!

The arrival of the latest in that incredible line of most powerful V12 Ferraris ever, has always been a huge occasion. These new 812 Superfast Competizione twins are no exception. Pushing 610 kW and 692 Nm with a 9,500 rpm redline, Maranello says the 6496 cc 1487 kg beast will crush 100 km/h 2.85 seconds, reach 200 km/h 7.5 seconds and run on to a handy 340 km/h top speed.

They’d be called 540s in Enzo’s day

In Enzo’s day this car would probably have been called the 540 Superfast Competizione. See, back in the real world, a Ferrari would known by the cubic capacity of one of its cylinders. The very first 1947 Ferrari 125 S was for example a 1500 cc V12. Scuderia Ferrari was around for 20 years by then, but the first car it ever built in-house was special. Because it was a V12.

As were the many in between — 225s, 250s, 275s and 365s — for 2.7, 3, 3.3 and 4.4 litres, among others, were some of the many V12 Ferraris to break power records over the years. Then Fiat took over and look at he names now! Who knows what those numbers mean — 812 could mean 8-litre V12. But… its not an 8-litre!

We digress. Hailed as the most powerful combustion engine of any road car to emerge from those hallowed Maranello gates, 812 Superfast Competizione comes with the stamp of approval of a stunning 1 minute 20 second lap record around Ferrari’s next door Fiorano test track. The newcomer revealed in full this week is further described as ‘the ultimate expression of a front-engined Ferrari’s berlinetta’. It’s only beaten by the LaFerrari and SF90 Stradale hybrid supercars.

Open or closed, CompetizioneS break records

Coming in either the coupe or a open ‘Competizione A’ roadster, The twins also break several other records. They pack Ferrari’s highest-revving production engine to date and among the quickest-spinning road-going V12s ever.

That thanks to a re-balanced 3% lighter crankshaft and 40% lighter titanium connecting rods. Add low friction diamond-like carbon-coated piston gudgeon pins and camshafts feeding new variable geometry inlet tracts to alter their length to constantly combustion. All new tricks of the Competizione trade.

Ferrari also promises an incredibly high standard of traditional engine sound. Thanks to a specially tuned exhaust system now including a petrol particulate filter. Those 830 hoses turn the rear wheels via Competizione’s seven-speed double-clutch automated manual gearbox, which benefits 5% quicker shift times ‘for even sportier shifting’ in collaboration with that elevated redline.

An extensive carbonfibre diet

Chassis enhancements include independent four wheel steering ‘to extend the feeling of agility and precision in cornering’, while an extensive carbonfibre diet means 38 fewer kilograms to lug around.

But there’s one aspect about this record breaking Ferrari that not everyone seems all that thrilled about. That’s Competizione’s revised aerodynamic package, which has clearly been tweaked more in search of optimal downforce, than winning the next auto show beauty pageant.

Those bumpers, splitters, diffusers and an aluminium panel rather than a conventional glass rear screen; a squadron of vortex generators, louvres, winglets snd vanes and that elevated rear spoiler, along with that dubious carbonfibre bonnet strip, have not just split the boundary later, but opinion too. The media and social media and even our office banter is alive with contention.

Love it or hate it — the power of Competizione!

Are these cars too ugly? Some love the way they look, others hate it. This writer for one, defends the good old function over form argument…

Not that any of that has made an iota of difference to Maranello’s Ferrari’s most passionate collectors and connoisseurs. These cars initially anticipated to be called GTO in deference to several homologation or ‘omologata’ Ferraris over the years are already long all sold out. All 999 versions of the R8.5-million (in Italy) hardtop and every one of the 599 R9.8 million open cars are accounted for.

Just goes to show. The power of Competizione!

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