Ferrari F50, a four-wheeled jewel

To celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Ferrari, the Maranello house decides to launch a model with the aim of leaving the whole world speechless.

For this purpose, inspiration is drawn from the exclusive and wonderful Ferrari F40, also created to celebrate this anniversary ten years earlier. Ferrari wants this model, which takes the name of Ferrari F50, to be one of the most exclusive on the market.

In fact, to decide the number of specimens to be produced, a market survey is carried out which results in a forecast of 350 customers, worldwide, willing to purchase this masterpiece.

The number is then reduced by one unit, thus bringing to 349 total units to be produced, thus remaining faithful to the rule of the founder Enzo Ferrari, who claimed to be, the perfect production number, equal to one example less than the total required by the market. ; following this teaching, each piece acquired the status of a very precious object, to be guarded with care and jealousy, and of inestimable value, almost as if it were Marie Antoinette's necklace, or Wallis Simpson's Cartier bracelet.

However, the market investigation turns out to be totally wrong in default, thus triggering a close fight to win a copy of the F50 by wealthy collectors and buyers, in some cases leading to unpleasant criminally relevant episodes; In fact, there are many cases of theft of F50s, stolen from super-protected garages that look more like a vault, which many experts believe to be thefts on commission, a hypothesis highly valued by the fact that it would be impossible to put such a car back on the market without arousing suspicion.

One of the most egregious thefts took place in 2003 in a Ferrari dealership in Philadelphia, where a self-styled customer, showing up with an escort in tow, disappeared in an F50 after getting on it to hear the roar of the engine.

Among other things, at the time of launch there is the possibility to buy only one copy for each buyer. And as if that weren't enough, Ferrari even imposes a ban on selling the car before the expiry of the two years from the delivery date, avoiding speculations that have already occurred in previous years with other limited series, such as the Ferrari F40.

The car was then produced between 1995 and 1997, and sold at the price of 852,800,000 Lire, which in those years was a lot of money, attested with today's currency around €647,658.85.

But where did the idea of ​​creating such a sought-after car come from?

The will comes from the thought of Piero Ferrari, who wishes to build a road car similar to a Formula One. And so it was decided right from the start to equip the car with a 4.7-liter narrow V 12-cylinder engine, derived directly from the engine that equips the very elegant Mansell Ferrari 640 F1 in the 1989 season.

An engine that is more of a real mechanical jewel put on the road, given that the distribution is five valves per cylinder controlled by a double overhead camshaft for each cylinder bank, with titanium connecting rods and dry sump lubrication.

Raised from 3.498 cubic centimeters to 4.698 cubic centimeters, this engine is capable of delivering a torque of 470 Nm, with 520 horsepower released at the stratospheric speed of 8.500 rpm, which is combined with a six-speed manual gearbox, which transfers power to the wheels of the rear axle.

A powerful engine, however, is not enough and, for the first time on a Ferrari Stradale, the frame is entirely made of carbon composite materials and linked to the engine-gearbox group by means of an auxiliary frame, in order to obtain extremely high structural rigidity while maintaining a very low weight, equal to a total of 1.230 kg, with a weight distribution of forty-two percent on the front axle and fiftyeight percent on the rear axle.

The line of the car was created by Pininfarina, by Pietro Camardella, a designer who has already worked on limited series such as the Ferrari F40.

The stylistic study engages over 2.000 hours of work in the wind tunnel, allowing high downforce values ​​to be achieved on the axles at high speeds, resulting in a particularly captivating line, which is combined with a braking system specially designed by Brembo deliberately without ABS.

However, all this is not enough for Ferrari: this model, as mentioned, must leave everyone speechless, so the Maranello car manufacturer plays a card that no one expects, namely to make this car a spider.

Ferrari has already proved itself with the F40, and no one expects such a powerful and performing spider, which is a winning choice, which further increases its exclusivity and uniqueness with the removable hard top.

The interior is not elegant but sporty, in keeping with the DNA of this car. The seats are in leather and feature side shoulders for better ergonomics for both the driver and the passenger, followed by black mats with a Ferrari red horse embroidered in the center of it.

The steering wheel recalls a sporty design, with the logo of the prancing horse on a yellow background in the center, followed by the various analog tachometers and odometers on the dashboard.

The interior of the car is therefore essential, and is aimed solely at sporty driving of what, as already described, is in all respects a Formula 1 homologated for public roads.

The adjective that most embodies this car is the brutality with which the power is delivered, with an acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.87 seconds and a maximum speed of 325 km/h, which make it above of any competing supercar in the market, and assuming that a more than appropriate 90s Hypercar name, equipped with 245/35 ZR 18 front and 335/30 ZR 18 rear covers.

The car born is a product made by the best artisans, the best Italian companies, which makes it so proud not only to Ferrari but also to the entire Italian industry, which is still highly sought after given the recent sale of one of the 55 examples of F50 with specific to the regulations of the overseas market, for the price of $ 1.295.000, equivalent to € 989.305, with assets only 5.131 km.

In January 2020, the development prototype used by Ferrari was auctioned, a unique example with 2,253 km under its belt; The exact figures are not yet known, but there are rumors that the selling price is around three million dollars.

Given the number of customers who requested a specimen of Ferrari F50, in 1996 the Maranello house set up the F50 GT project, a gran turismo intended for racing for series derivatives which had their own in the emerging BPR Global GT Series Championship. landmark.

Despite the convincing results found in the track tests at Fiorano, the program was quickly abandoned, probably for two reasons: to concentrate all efforts in winning the Formula One World Championship, and because of the regulations for GT cars that lent themselves to projects. more and more pushed.

Of the Ferrari F50 GT only two specimens were built and sold in addition to the prototype, with the clause forbidding the car to be deployed in any car competition.



Twelve, 65° V cylinders

Monobloc in cast iron

Light alloy head

Distribution with five valves per cylinder with double camshaft per cylinder bank

Displacement 4,698.5 cm³

Bore x Stroke: 85x69 mm

Power supply: Bosch Motronic 2.7 injection


Power 383 Kw/520 hp at 8.500 rpm

Specific Power 111 hp/liter

Torque 471 Nm at 6,500 rpm

Bosch static electronic ignition

12 V electrical system

Dry twin-plate clutch

Six-speed manual transmission, RM, self-locking differential


Two doors

Position Mid-rear engine

Rear-wheel Drive

Carbon fiber tank

Rack-and-pinion steering

Front track 1620 mm

Rear track 1602 mm

Push rod type front suspension, mounted on uniball, superimposed wishbones, coil springs, Bilstein aluminum tube shock absorbers with electronic damping control

Push rod type rear suspension, mounted on uniball, superimposed wishbones, coil springs, Bilstein aluminum tube shock absorbers with electronic damping control

Front brakes with Ø 355 mm Brembo discs, self-ventilated and perforated, with 4-piston aluminum calipers

Rear brakes with Ø 355 mm Brembo discs, self-ventilated and perforated, with four-piston aluminum calipers

Tubeless radial tires

Front 245/35 ZR 18

Rear 335/30 ZR 18

18" rims

Performance declared

Speed ​​325 Km / h

Acceleration from 0-100km / h in 3.87 seconds, and 1000m from standstill in 21.7 seconds

Andrea Rasponi