Ferrari 12Cilindri – the naturally aspirated V12 remains


A pinch of Daytona and the iconic F140 V12 engine: meet the Ferrari 12Cilindri, which will also be available as a Spider.

Every year we worry a little bit: which twelve-cylinder engines will stay or which engine will be sacrificed on the altar of electrification this time. We know that Ferrari is also working on the development of fully electric vehicles. Plug-in hybrids such as the Ferrari 296 and SF90 have also been around for some years. But fortunately, the Italians also continue to build cars where they have made a name for themselves: cars with a very potent V12 in the front.

9,500 rpm

The V12 with engine code F140HD is as Ferrari describes it: the purest expression of Ferrari’s soul: its peerless performance, powerful soundtrack and exclusivity make it the worthy heir to the legendary berlinetta sports cars that wrote some of the most glittering chapters in the marque’s history.

That’s certainly poetic, but luckily we can also share some technical details with you. Some of the custom components and software were already used in the Ferrari 812 Competizione. The V12 can make even more revs, to realize that many components went on a diet. The steel connecting rods have been replaced by titanium ones, which saves about 40% weight in total.

The pistons are made of aluminum, which provides an unspecified saving. By working on the balanced crankshaft, Ferrari managed to take 3% off that.

The intake path and plenum have become more compact, which provides more power at higher revs. The variable part of the intake trajectory ensures that the torque curve is optimized at low revs.

Emission requirements and noise

The elephant in the room for sports car manufacturers is the increasingly stringent emission requirements. In short, the elephant gets more and more filters tied to its trunk. In the case of the elephant, it is fairly clear that it has to trumpet loudly to make itself heard.

On the positive side, the Ferrari 12Cilindri meets all the latest emission requirements (EU6E, China6B and BIN50). A ceramic catalytic converter is coupled to a petrol particulate filter (OPF) and both dampen quite a bit of noise.

If there’s one car where sound is important, it’s a Ferrari with V12. To get the most out of it, every element of the intake and exhaust lines has been optimised. Where other manufacturers put the millions for development into the software for the navi or making the powertrain more economical, at Ferrari entire teams are working on a nice sound (and optimal performance).

The exhaust ducts are of equal length, the 6-in-1 manifold for each cylinder bank and the innovative design of the central parts have resulted in Ferrari’s typical V12 howl. The shape of the ducts and the internal fluidynamics of the silencer baffles are designed to keep back pressure to a minimum, improving power delivery. The geometry of the exhaust system’s shapes and curves has also been perfected to ensure the purest tones of Ferrari’s signature sound all the way to the limiter.

As cars become quieter on the outside, manufacturers also have to look for ways to get more noise in the cabin. The solution is often in the intake side, by changing the position of the resonators, the pressure waves also changed, resulting in a richer range, especially in terms of the mid frequencies. We hope to be able to share with you whether it worked out well when we get to do a lap in the Ferrari 12Cilindri.

830 hp and 8-speed DCT

The V12 is mated to the excellent 8-speed dual-clutch gearbox (DCT). Compared to the 812, shift times have become 30% faster.

At 9,250 rpm, the V12 delivers 830 hp. I’ll write it out for you: eight hundred and thirty horses. The maximum torque of the 12Cilindri only reaches 7,250 rpm, the number of newton meters is a healthy 678 Nm. And make no mistake: this is a high-revving engine, but it is also a big engine. Thanks to the displacement of 6.5 liters, the V12 also feels more than potent at the bottom. Pulling through does pay off and hopefully will be rewarded with a great soundtrack. The redline is at an astronomical 9,500 rpm.

The performance is therefore more than adequate: the top speed is more than 340 km/h. The 0-100 does the rear-wheel drive Ferrari 12Cilindri in 2.9s, from 0-200 takes less than 7.9s.

Daytona-like design

Miami Vice all over again, Sonny drove a fake Daytona before he got the infamous white Testa Rossa. Could it be a coincidence that Ferrari launched the 12Cilindri in Miami?

It does take some getting used to, because the break with the styling of the Ferrari 812 is clear. Gone are the characteristic headlights, but maybe that was about time.

Shorter wheelbase and active aerodynamics

At a time when cars are only growing, it is refreshing to read that the wheelbase of the Ferrari 12Cilindri is 20mm shorter than its predecessor. According to Ferrari, the shorter wheelbase should lead to more dynamic handling, which with 830 hp sent to the road via the rear wheels, can also lead to very interesting handling. Aspirated Torque Shaping should help with that, without coming across as too much of an annoying babysitter.

Large spoilers don’t fit the elegant Ferrari V12 models with an engine, at least that’s my humble opinion. Fortunately, the designers at Ferrari share this and so the 12Cilindri is classically beautiful with relatively few (visible) aerodynamic elements.

As you can see in the photos, Ferrari is launching the 12Cilindri Spider at the same time as the closed 12Cilindri as well. Pricing is yet to be announced.

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12CilindriAutomotiveengineeringFerrarihorsepowerItalian sports carLegacynaturally aspiratedperformanceV12 engine
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