From the 250 Series to the 275 GTB and from the 550 Maranello to the 599 Fiorano, the front-engined, twelve-cylinder GT cars have always been Ferrari's bread and butter, and that's probably how Enzo would have wanted it. That recent 599 was a great car with over 600 horsepower and more technology than you would know what to do with, but now Ferrari has started selling the Fiorano's replacement, the glorious F12 Berlinetta. Until the LaFerrari broke cover in mid-2013, the F12 was the Italian marque's flagship model as well as its most expensive offering, topping $330,000. It is a wild price tag, and one that might seem pretty high for a front-engined car that's made out of aluminum instead of carbon fiber. But given the total package offered by the F12, it is certainly worthy of the dollar figures and worthy of the Prancing Horse.
Powering the new car is a 6.3 liter V-12 that is related to the unit four-wheel-drive FF, but in the rear-drive F12 it churns out a few dozen more horsepower, bringing the total to 730. Torque measures 509 lb/ft, and the 3,800 pound grand tourer will hit sixty in a remarkable 3.1 seconds and go on to a top speed of around 210 miles per hour. The F12 is lighter, more powerful, more aerodynamic, lower, and more rigid than the car it replaces, and few would deny that it looks leaps and bounds better than the 599 as well.Â
Another strength of the F12 is apparently its usability. It offers an admirable level of comfort and utility for a car that puts up such wild performance numbers, but it is a grand touring car, after all. Probably its biggest competitor, though, fits more into the standard supercar mold. The Lamborghini Aventador is the stereotypical manic mid-engined supercar that we associate with a six-figure price tag, but compared to the Ferrari the Lambo is significantly more expensive, not really any faster, and arguably less graceful in appearance. The Ferrari also seems more user-friendly, more comfortable, and easier to live with. In this modern age we live in and among the mostly older crowd that is going to be able to afford these cars, that's something that matters.Â
At the end of the day, the simple fact is that Ferrari, the cream of the performance car crop, has its latest flagship GT car out, and it's a good thing. The sound its V-12 makes is perfect, the cockpit is voluptuous without being overdone, and the bodywork looks fantastic. It's more realistic than the LaFerrari, not to mention the fact that it doesn't have a stupid name, but that's not to say that it doesn't have all of the pomp and circumstance that you'd expect from a Ferrari. Indeed, it's tasteful and not in your face about anything like products from some of the other, younger carmakers out there. And that's what makes the F12 a true Ferrari in every sense of the word. If they had called this car the "Enzo" instead, few could've complained. He'd probably love it.