Geneva: ‘most powerful’ Ferrari 812 Superfast

V12 engined 812 'designed to be flexible'.

- Advertisement -

The Ferrari 812 Superfast, unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show, is the most powerful and fastest front-engined road-going car the iconic Italian brand has ever produced.

Reason for this lies in the new 12-cylinder engine developed for the car, which its creators describe as ‘of unprecedented efficiency and might.’

It is based on the 6.2-litre unit of the previous record-holding F12 Berlinetta, but with its capacity enlarged to 6.5 litres and modifications made to the intake system and combustion rate. The first 350 bar direction injection system used on a spark-ignition engine is fitted, while the variable geometry inlet tracts are evolved from those on the limited-edition F12tdf, and originally developed by Ferrari’s F1 team.

Power goes up 60hp over the F12 Berlinetta, the Superfast pumping out some 800hp at 8500rpm. Torque is 718Nm at 7000rpm, with 80 per cent on tap from only 3500rpm.

Fast but flexible

Ferrari says these figures make the engine a very flexible unit, essential to attract the 812’s very specific customer base; “(They) demand the most powerful and exclusive Ferrari in the range – they want a blisteringly high-performance car, but refuse to compromise on the kind of versatility that will allow them to thoroughly appreciate driving it as a 360-degree experience.”

The engine is combined with a developed version of Ferrari’s F1 dual-clutch transmission – the modifications are to meet the car’s track driving performance targets and cope with a rev counter red line extended to 8,900rpm. Shift times have also been reduced by 30 per cent.

Ferrari 812 Superfast 2
Many Geneva visitors struggled to get a proper look at the Ferrari 812 Superfast, such was the interest. Photo: Andrew Charman

All of this translates to a 0-62mph time of 2.9 seconds, the 812 Superfast taking only another five seconds to double its speed and being capable of 211mph. Combined cycle fuel consumption is 19mpg with CO2 emissions of 340g/km.

Also debuting on the car is Ferrari’s first electric power-steering system, and the ‘Virtual Short Wheelbase 2.0’ that combines the electric assistance to the front steering with rear-wheel steering to make the car more agile in corners. The driver can dial in functions including peak performance and power oversteer.

Brembo brakes originally fitted to the LaFerrari hypercar are used again on the 812 Superfast, which with the performance ABS system cuts braking times from 62mph by almost six per cent when compared to the F12 Berlinetta.

Aero excellence

A major aerodynamics programme sees the Ferrari 812 Superfast significantly more aero-efficient than the F12 Berlinetta, both active aero elements and improvements to the car’s drag values helping to generate 30 per cent more downforce.

Notable elements include a vane on the front bumper to shift air hitting the front of the car out to the flanks, reducing the aero wake and therefore the drag. The underbody diffusers ahead of the front wheels boast mobile elements to cancel out air pressure generated at high speeds.

The car’s styling is said to recall the classic 365 GTB/4 Daytona of 1969, the fastback two-box design including a high but short tail. Creases are distinctive and the wheelarches muscular to add to the car’s presence.

No price has yet been announced for the 812 Superfast.

Ferrari 812 Superfast at the 2017 Geneva motor show

Andrew Charman
Andrew Charman
Andrew is a road test editor for The Car Expert. He is a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers, and has been testing and writing about new cars for more than 20 years. Today he is well known to senior personnel at the major car manufacturers and attends many new model launches each year.

Latest Expert Advice

Car insurance prices hit two-year high

The cost of car insurance has hit a two-year high, according to newly-published figures, following an average £41 increase over the last 12 months.

Calls made for zero tolerance on drink-driving

Calls are being made for a zero-tolerance policy towards drink-driving as a recent study confirmed that alcohol-related deaths are on the rise in the UK.

Latest Expert Ratings

BMW X5

The BMW X5 currently holds a rating of 80% on our Expert Rating scale, which is a few points behind the class leaders but still competitive.

Mercedes-Benz GLE

The Mercedes-Benz GLE has received generally good media reviews, although its overall Expert Rating score lags some way behind the class-leading Volvo XC90.

Porsche 718 Cayman and Boxster GTS 4.0 revealed with six-cylinder engine

Porsche has unveiled new six-cylinder-powered versions of its 718 Cayman and Boxster GTS models, addressing one of the biggest concerns of the 718 twins.

Bentley Mulsanne bows out with final ‘6.75 Edition’

The Bentley Mulsanne and its long-lived 6.75-litre V8 engine will bid farewell to the world with a limited-edition '6.75 Edition' model.

Positive end to negative year for new car sales

Some good results for new car sales in December will have brought some Christmas cheer to the car industry at the end of another year of falling sales.

Election nerves keep customers away from showrooms in November

Private new car sales were down by 6% in November compared to the same month last year, with the general election predictably causing havoc for retailers.

More from The Car Expert

Expert Advice

Award-winning, independent and impartial advice on buying, financing, owning and running a car

Expert Ratings

We analyse and aggregate dozens of media reviews for each new car into an overall Expert Rating

Expert News

All the most important new car launches, model updates, car reviews and industry news

Expert Partners

Our new space for commercial partners to bring you special offers on their products and services

What are your thoughts? Let us know below.