Ferrari Throughout Its Decades

Ferrari: a name that evokes images of exoticism, power, and victory. The Maranello-based sports car manufacturer has been around for 70 years (excluding Scuderia Ferrari’s establishment in 1929). To help celebrate Ferrari’s 70th anniversary, here is a list of vehicles from each of the company’s decades.

1940s

The first car with a Ferrari badge, the 1947 125 S had a V-12 engine with three Weber 30 DCF carburetors under the hood. When it debuted on the track in Piacenza, Italy, Enzo Ferrari called it “a promising failure.” Driver Franco Cortese, who was leading the race, had to drop out due to a problematic fuel pump. The 125 S won six of its next 13 races.

Ferrari 125 S
Franco Cortese in a Ferrari 125 S at Piacenza. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

1950s

Perhaps one of the most iconic Ferraris ever is the 1957 250 Testa Rossa. With the V-12 from the 250 Gran Turismo and six twin-choke carburetors, the 250 Testa Rossa won the 1958 FIA Manufacturer’s World Championship, after the series limited prototypes to three-liter engines. The 250 Testa Rossa had a top speed of approximately 168 mph.

Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa
1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa. Photo by Jim Culp.

1960s

Another amazingly iconic Ferrari is the 1962 250 GTO. Now worth millions of dollars, the Giotto Bizzarrini–designed car debuted on the track at the 1962 12 Hours of Sebring. It finished second overall with drivers Phil Hill and Olivier Gendebien (a 250 Testa Rossa won). The aluminum-bodied 250 GTO had three D-shaped panels on the top side of the nose that, when removed, increased airflow to the radiator.

Ferrari 250 GTO
1962 Ferrari 250 GTO at the 2011 Monterey Historics. Photo by Motohide Miwa via Wikimedia Commons.

1970s

The 1971 365 GTC4 had the bodywork of a two-seater coupe but included two additional little seats in the back of the interior. The door trim and the middle of the seats were plaid fabric, though leather trim was optional. The low front end featured a full-width black rubber bumper and pop-up headlights. Ferrari produced 500 examples during the 365 GTC4’s short production run, which ended in the fall of 1972.

Ferrari 365 GTC4
Ferrari 365 GTC4. Photo by René Anderes via Wikimedia Commons.

1980s

Built to celebrate the automaker’s 40th anniversary, the Pininfarina-designed 1987 F40 was the first series production car with body panels that used mostly composite materials. The longitudinal mid-mounted V-8 had twin IHI turbochargers and put out 471 horsepower. The F40’s interior wasn’t much for comfort, with just two red cloth sports seats, a felt-covered dashboard and center tunnel, a rubber heel mat for the driver, and roof lining. That was it for the interior trim.

Ferrari F40
Ferrari F40. Photo by Will Ainsworth via Wikimedia Commons.

1990s

The 1994 F355 Berlinetta had a five-valve-per-cylinder V-8 engine with titanium connecting rods. A steel monocoque chassis and a tubular steel rear subframe were paired with anti-roll bars and an electronically controlled suspension that featured gas-filled telescopic dampers. Another Pininfarina-designed car, the F355 Berlinetta had an aluminum and steel body and a full-body undertray to help with downforce.

F355 Berlinetta
Ferrari F355 Berlinetta. Photo by Artix Kreiger 2 via Wikimedia Commons.

2000s

The 2005 FXX was a pure track car with an 800-hp 6.3-liter V-12. An F1-style gearbox delivered gearchanges in less than 100 milliseconds. An adjustable spoiler complemented the FXX’s aerodynamic shape, and the car had a 214-mph top speed. Those who spent the big bucks to purchase an FXX could only take it to Ferrari-approved track days.

FXX
Ferrari FXX #31. Photo by ww2censor via Wikimedia Commons.

2010s

One of the most powerful front-engine Ferraris, the 2013 F12berlinetta had a 6.3-liter direct-injected V-12 putting out 731 horsepower at 8250 rpm. A 0.299 drag coefficient was paired with aerodynamic technology, such as an “Aero Bridge,” which channeled air over the hood to create downforce. The F12berlinetta also had carbon-ceramic brakes and a performance-minded suspension with L-shaped lower wishbones in the front and a multilink rear suspension.

F12berlinetta
Ferrari F12berlinetta at the 2013 North American International Auto Show. Photo by Sarah Larson.

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