Today we are comparing 2 new releases of sports cars that have almost the same shape, from 2 different manufacturers considered as the elite in this segment, and presenting for the first time a with more than 500 hp, front V12 engines : a four seats and four-wheel drive Ferrari FF, and the V12 Zagato that is an elegant design which reflects the great balance between race performance and pure Aston Martin style.
2012 FERRARI FF
The FF – an acronym for Ferrari Four (four seats and four-wheel drive) – ushers in an entirely new GT sports car concept. A decisive break with the past, the new car represents not so much an evolution as a true revolution.
This new V12 melds to an unprecedented level an extremely sporty, high-performance character with incredible versatility, superb comfort and sophisticated elegance, guaranteeing both driver and passengers an absolutely unique driving experience.
Designed by Pininfarina, the shape and proportions perfectly interpret the Ferrari FF’s harmonious blend of sporting DNA and extraordinary usability.
The FF features the company’s first ever four-wheel drive system. Ferrari’s exclusive, patented 4RM (four-wheel drive) weighs 50 per cent less than a conventional four-wheel drive system, maintaining perfect weight distribution (53 per cent over the rear axle). Completely integrated with the car’s electronic dynamic control systems, the four-wheel drive technology delivers record levels of performance on all terrains and in all conditions via continuous and intelligent predictive torque distribution to all four wheels. The Ferrari FF is also equipped with the latest magnetorheological damping system (SCM3), as well as the most recent development in carbon-ceramic brakes from Brembo.
Exceptional performance levels come courtesy of the new 6,262 cc direct injection engine which develops 660 CV at 8,000 rpm. In tandem with its transaxle dual-clutch F1 gearbox, stunning acceleration figures (0-100 km/h in 3.7 sec.) are guaranteed. The new model’s class-leading weight-to-power ratio of 2.7 kg/CV, along with its ideal weight distribution, ensures exceptionally responsive handling. The result is that owners will be able to enjoy the FF’s prowess over a wide range of uses: city driving, on low grip or snow-covered surfaces and on the track. Performance aside, Maranello’s latest model also offers standards of passenger space, comfort, in-car spec and equipment previously unheard of in such a high-performance car. It can comfortably accommodate four people and their luggage, thanks to the best cabin space and boot capacity (450 litres extendable to 800) figures in its category, including four-door cars.
A vast array of personalisation options and accessories has been developed for the Ferrari FF. These include six model-specific exterior colours and sumptuous interior trim incorporating specially selected and treated aniline leather.
The Ferrari FF, which made its official debut in occasion of the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, is presented with the first three photos from a dedicated shoot by Giovanni Gastel.
2011 Aston Martin V12 Zagato
“The V12 Zagato is an elegant yet brutal design which reflects the great balance between race performance and pure Aston Martin style. The original DB4GT Zagato was a true icon, powerful and graceful; the new design is a true representation of the spirit of DB4GT Zagato. The muscular organic forms define the thoroughbred nature of the car’s racing credentials.”
Working alongside the initial design team was a dedicated group of Aston Martin engineers led by Chris Porritt – previously responsible for the engineering of the One-77. With the skills and knowledge gained from such specialised projects this team has worked to bring the unique design of the V12 Zagato to reality in a very short period of time.
Featuring a new handcrafted aluminium body, the V12 Zagato delivers a beautiful and muscular design not possible using pre-formed panel techniques. Using the influences and skill of nearly 100 years of heritage in the craft, every aluminium panel was formed using an English wheel and traditionally crafted body bucks. Each front wing alone comprises seven separate pieces of aluminium, combined and then hand finished to give one flowing form. Another iconic Zagato design cue is the double bubble roof created in this case from five separate pieces illustrating further the intensity of craftsmanship involved in the construction of the V12 Zagato.
Designed for the focused driver, the V12 Zagato has been honed with pure driving enjoyment in mind. The V12 Zagato combines Aston Martin’s most dynamic bonded aluminium platform with the power of the 6.0-litre V12 engine producing 510 bhp (380 kW / 517 PS), and 570 Nm (420 lb ft) of torque.
The V12 Vantage which forms the basis of the V12 Zagato has been proven on the race track as early as 2009 with a class win in its debut race at the 24 hour race at Nürburgring whilst being close to production standard with only essential safety modifications, reduced weight and re-tuned suspension but no additional aerodynamic enhancements. In 2011 the car has gone on to form the basis of the new Aston Martin GT3 race car unveiled last month.
The first DB4GT Zagato shown to the public in late 1960 spent much of its life as a racing car after launch. Later perhaps the two most famous DB4GT Zagatos, registered ‘1 VEV’ and ‘2 VEV’ were raced with success by such names as Jim Clark and Roy Salvadori. The fascinating story of these cars and the nature of high performance and low weight which drove the Zagato projects gave the inspiration for the first two V12 Zagatos to be created as endurance race cars.
The racing debut of the V12 Zagato will be at the four hour VLN race at Nürburgring on 28th May with a view to two cars racing at the 24 hour race on 25/26 June. The cars will be driven by a team with great experience of Aston Martin race cars, led for the sixth year by Chief Executive Dr. Ulrich Bez.
Both cars follow Aston Martin’s philosophy of racing in close-to-production form but with full FIA safety compliance. V12 Vantage Zagato specification includes a bonded aluminium platform modified with a bespoke steel roll cage, front and rear double wishbone suspension with fully adjustable Multimatic DSSV Dampers and a 120ltr endurance racing fuel tank.
Aston Martin V12 Zagato Endurance Race Car Specification
Body: Two door, two seat coupe body Bonded aluminium structure Bespoke steel roll cage. Hand crafted Aluminium body
Engine: All alloy quad overhead cam 48 valve 5935cc V12 Compression ratio 10.9:1 Front mid-mounted engine, rear wheel drive
Transmission: Rear mid-mounted, six-speed automated manual gearbox with auto shift manual/select shift manual (ASM/SSM) electric hydraulic control system Magnesium alloy torque tube with carbon fibre propeller shaft Twin Plate competition clutch. Limited slip differential.
Suspension: All round independent double wishbone with fully adjustable Multimatic DSSV dampers. Brakes: Front: Ventilated floating grooved discs with 6 piston callipers Rear: Ventilated floating grooved discs with 4 piston calipers
Fuel System: 120 litre endurance racing fuel tank