Ferrari preps for launch of first hybrid in 2013

Ferrari preps for launch of first hybrid in 2013

Famed Italian automaker Ferrari is developing its very first gasoline-electric hybrid system for 2013. The new energy-efficient technology will feature in the as-yet-to-be-named Ferrari Enzo successor, reports Automotive News.

The gasoline-powered Enzo (pictured), named in honor of founder Enzo Ferrari, was originally announced back in 2002 at the Paris Motor Show, and featured a mid-engine V12 capable of hitting 60 mph in as little as 3.14 seconds with a top speed of 221 mph. Apart from the Enzo’s staggering $659,330 price, the cutting-edge Ferrari was notable for its liberal use of F1 technology, including an electrohydraulic shift transmission and carbon-fiber body.

Not content with living in the shadows of its supercar sibling, Ferrari’s first hybrid will certainly have its work cut out for it. From a design and performance perspective, whatever successor to the Enzo, be it hybrid or otherwise, will need to perform…and if it can look a lot sexier than the Enzo all the better. Of course that shouldn’t be too difficult considering the Enzo was harder on the eyes than your wallet.

Thankfully, Maranello’s modus operandi will center on performance and fuel consumption, traditionally not something sports car manufacturers like Ferrari and even fellow Italian rivals Lamborghini give much thought towards.

“We are entering the market with our Formula One-derived hybrid system, which will slash fuel consumption and increase performance,” Ferrari CEO Amedeo Felisa told Automotive News Europe.

According to Ferrari, extensive testing has indicated its ability to slash fuel consumption by nearly 40 percent thanks to its “HY-KERS” hybrid system, while also decreasing acceleration time from 0 to 124 mph by roughly three seconds compared to a model without the system.

Unfortunately the hybrid system while adding increased performance also adds about 264 pounds to a car, Felisa explained. However, some of that will be offset by cutting weight from the car’s chassis and powertrain. How so? Well, like its Enzo predecessor, Ferrari’s hybrid Enzo replacement will employ the same grade of carbon fiber featured in Ferrari’s F1 cars. According to Ferrari’s CEO, that carbon fiber is both lighter and more resilient than what was used in the Enzo.

It’s also being reported that Ferrari will team with South Korean electronics giant Samsung, which will supply the lithium-ion cells used in Ferrari’s first hybrid.