Here’s some interesting, and long rumored news that turns out to be true: Ferrari, makers of the best cars in the world, is going green, instituting a host of enviro-friendly initiatives and green products in the near future.
Ferrari chief executive Amadeo Felisa confirmed that the Maranello-based company is looking into two approaches to make their products greener and more environmentally friendly. Specifically, Ferrari is looking into turbocharging as route to maintain power outputs and E85 bio-ethanol as a fuel. Chief executive Felisa states that Ferrari will throw the full weight of its technical know-how into ensuring that turbocharged engines retain Ferrari’s trademark high-revving feel, as well as delivering that all important power and torque to the tarmac, as expected by Ferrari customers. Felisa also revealed that the ECU on the company’s latest model, the California, is already ready set up to burn E85.
Ferrari is also working on a hybrid concept, likely to incorporate the F1-derived KERS regenerative braking system, to debut at an upcoming auto show in the United States, Felisa said. Talk about racing improving the bread, not to mention win on Sunday Sell on Monday. The suggestion is that the hybrid Ferrari will bow at the Los Angeles show. This would follow on the heals of the expected debut at September’s Frankfurt show of Ferrari’s replacement for the F430 line.
The “new F430”, the name has not yet been released, has long been rumored to be smaller, lighter, and will pack a very high output turbo charged engine (most likely a V8). Adding turbos is sort of a no-brainer and something that a company like Ferrari can easily accomplish – after all, they’ve done it in the past, just ask anyone who’s tangled with an F40.
And I have to say that a road going KERS seems like a pretty easy call as well. The performance benefits of having XX extra horsepower and torque on tap, especially at zero RPM from an electric drive motor, is just too good to pass up. And you also know that it would be very easy to have the electric portion of the hybrid switch into a fuel saving/economy/green mode as well. And this could probably be accomplished at the flip of a switch, or, for that matter, automatically.
About 20 years ago, when all the big time sports racers were running big, turbocharged V8s, they all had a dash switch that would kick the cars into a “fuel saving mode” during yellow flag periods. The amount of fuel used by the like of Sauber C9s was enormous, so anything they could do to save it, especially under a full course caution, was a logical step.
If you combine that philosophy with a KERS-based hybrid drive, you can see where this is heading.