Ferrari Shows 900-Plus Horsepower Hybrid in Beijing

We’ve heard from Ferrari fans who were appalled at the sight of a bright-green painted Ferrari 599 GTB first shown at Geneva in 2010, but Ferrari’s latest manifestation of greenness is highlights on a powertrain now boasting over 900 electric- and gas-powered ponies.

The Maranello-based automaker is featuring the updated hybrid V12 powertrain at the Beijing auto show this week, and some are saying it could be used for the next Enzo now under development.

The majority of its galloping horses will come via the efficient 600-plus horsepower V12, which Ferrari has said it will retain for its top level cars. Adding to the stampede is the HY-KERS system which utilizes kinetic energy recovery first developed in its Formula One cars.

As the video shows, it adds an electric motor powered by energy stored in its lithium-ion battery pack. Actual specs have not been divulged, but power is transmitted by a 7-speed dual clutch unit. The powertrain uses other modern tricks like stop/start and regenerative braking, but instead of an alternator, it uses a generator. The full explanation for this would be lengthy, but in short, the generator minimizes drag under acceleration by decoupling.

The road-going system differs also from the F1-based HY-KERS setup – which utilizes energy captured from its flywheel – and instead uses an electric motor in place of the F1 car’s separate flywheel.

Ferrari says since last shown, it has improved the HY-KERS road engine’s output by 10 percent, and with elite makers now boasting horsepower hovering around the 1000 mark, it stands to reason – and let’s see if Ferrari can reliably squeeze more horses and watts from this powertrain.

Although it probably doesn’t need to be said, the company is not thinking about the same expectations Toyota might think of when developing a Prius or other hybrid.

Such cars in the class as the Enzo are more often driven infrequently, and definitely not sold in high volume. This level of vehicle is viewed as the top of the consumer automotive hierarchy, but Ferrari still must meet emissions regulations. The path it is taking is one which can simultaneously titillate its discriminating clientele with the latest in green tech while boosting power as well.

It sends a message that you can still have it all and arguably more – keeping the massive V12 and instead of doing something like forced induction, electrifying it for the extra kick instead. At the same time, emissions are said to be reduced by 40 percent.

New York Times


  • MrEnergyCzar

    I guess this can reduce your green guilt.

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  • Capt. Concernicus

    It sure reduces the green in your wallet.

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