Ferrari has unveiled its first ever plug-in hybrid in the form of the SF90 Stradale.
Described as a “milestone” by the brand’s CEO Louis Camilleri, the SF90 Stradale is the second of five new cars due from Maranello this year and is named to celebrate 90 years of the Scuderia Ferrari racing team.
At the heart of the new car lies the most powerful yet version of Ferrari’s twin-turbo V8. Alone, it produces 769bhp but here it is matched to three electric motors. One, derived from the Formula 1 Kers system, sits between the engine and gearbox at the rear while two more are situated on the front axle.
In total these give the SF90 Stradale 986bhp – more than the hybrid LaFerrari hypercar – and make it the first ever four-wheel-drive Ferrari sports car.
On the track that means it will reach 62mph in 2.5 seconds and 124mph in just 6.7 seconds, with a top speed of 211mph.
The 4.0-litre engine is based on the 3.9-litre one found in the Ferrari 488 Pista but bored out, lightened and with significant changes to the intake and exhaust systems.
The gearbox, too, is new, and designed to improve efficiency, reduce weight and lower its centre of gravity. With no gearstick to control the DSG transmission, gears are selected via a grille-style feature that references Ferrari’s legendary manual gear-shift gate.
The SF890 Stradale feature four drive modes ranging from pure electric where it is driven purely by the front two motors, to “qualify” which allows all three electric motors and the combustion engine to operate at their full potential for maximum performance.
The hybrid system and electric front axle also allows for a new approach to Ferrari’s traction control system.
Electric traction control optimises the torque distribution to individual wheels, while the front axles feature torque vectoring and the brake-by-wire control allows the braking torque to be split between the hydraulic system and the electric motors, allowing regenerative recovery under braking
The extra weight of the hybrid system (270kg) led to an “obsessive” mission to cut weight elsewhere on the car.
Its body and chassis are all-new and built using “multi-material” techniques that combine lightweight metals such as aluminium with carbon fibre. Despite its light weight (1,570kg), the extensive use of super-strong aluminium and carbon fibre makes the SF90 Stradale’s platform stronger and stiffer than any previous Ferrari chassis.
The SF90 Stradale’s body was designed with one eye on moving Ferrari’s super car styling forward and another on serving the aerodynamic requirements to give it the performance and cooling properties it demanded.
Short overhangs and a cab-forward architecture help emphasise the mid-engine layout of the car while the bubble-shaped cabin sits 20mm lower than in any other Ferrari, flowing into rear flying buttresses, all of which adds what Ferrari calls an “aeronautical cockpit feel”.
Design of the car’s aerodynamic features focused on making it the benchmark in its class for downforce and efficiency and range from front vortex generators and forged wheels with directional air channels to a “shut-off Gurney”, which uses electric actuators to raise and lower a section of the rear wing depending on driving conditions.
Inside, the SF90 Stradale is also all-new and features nods to Ferrari’s F1 heritage in a driver-focused setup.
A single 16-inch digital HD screen curves towards the driver and is complimented by a head-up display projected onto the windscreen.
Ferrari says the SF90 Stradale’s interior has been designed with a “hands-on-the-wheel” philosophy, with haptic touch controls for everything from the lights to the navigation mounted on the steering wheel, allowing the driver to control virtually every aspect of the car without ever taking their hands off the wheel.
Pricing is yet to be announced but Ferrari’s chief marketing and commercial officer Enrico Galliera has said it will cost less than a LaFerrari but more than an 812 Superfast, putting it somewhere in the £500,000 region.