LaFerrari lookalike spied testing on wet German roads
Spy photographers in Germany have spotted a heavily camouflaged, yet unmistakable hypercar out testing on public roads. Is a successor to the LaFerrari hiding under that familiar bodywork?
Range-topping Ferraris come about once every decade or so. The last crown jewel, creatively named the Ferrari LaFerrari, began production in 2013. Assuming we’re due for a follow-up in the next couple of years—this may very well be our first look Maranello’s top-tier hypercar of the future.
Truth be told, there’s not much to go on here. The car looks awfully like a LaFerrari Aperta, but we can make out a new front fascia with more defined air intakes on each end. Aside from that fascia, most of the body work appears to be relatively untouched. In all likelihood, the final form for this Ferrari will be much different than what’s visible here. Mules like this are often deployed to obscure the final product. (Remember Blackjack, the C8 Corvette mule?)
A few minor details also caught our eye. For starters, there are traditional five-lug wheels at all four corners, rather than the center-locking wheels that we’re used to seeing on the LaFerrari. Another detail: the little lightning bolt on the blue sticker adorning the “fuel cap” (the photo above shows it clearly) would seem to imply that yes, electrons will assist in this car’s motivation.
Hybrid power wouldn’t be a radical departure from the outgoing hypercar, which used an 161-horsepower F1-inspired Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) to supplement the screaming 789-horse 6.5-liter V-12. Total output rang in at a staggering 950 horsepower and 715 lb-ft of torque. Expect that horsepower figure to clear the four-figure mark with the next iteration. All that said, we don’t yet know what kind of electric/ICE split we’ll see. While Ferrari intends to keep the V-12 free from full-blown hybridization–Ferrari Chief Technical Officer maintained that the V-12 was essential to the brand’s identity—we would expect to see a more extreme KERS application underpinning the the next-gen car’s powertrain.
This car will need every ounce of extra shove it can get; Ferrari tends to demonstrate performance hierarchy through lap times at the marque’s Fiorano test track. Up until the debut of the SF90 Stradale, no new production Ferrari had come within a second of the LaFerrari’s 1:19.7-second lap record. The SF90 circled the track in 1:19 flat; to reclaim its throne with vigor, we’d guess that the next hypercar will want to definitively stand alone. Ferrari will want to erase all doubt about what model sits at the apex of this food chain.
Expect to see more details trickle out over the next few years for this car. If the decade-cadence rule is strictly followed, expect production of the next-gen hypercar to begin sometime in 2023, which might imply a 2022 reveal date. Regardless of exactly when it shows up, we’re excited to see the what’s next for Ferrari’s flagship.