The successor to the Ferrari Enzo – expected to be the fastest road car Ferrari has ever produced – won't be revealed fully until the Geneva Motor Show next March. But to whet our appetites, Ferrari has unveiled the hi-tech carbon-fibre chassis that will underpin it at the Paris Motor Show.
Displayed in all its exposed-weave glory on the Ferrari stand, the carbon-fibre tub uses technology derived directly from the F1 team. Ferrari even drafted in Rory Byrne, a legendary F1 chassis engineer who helped Michael Schumacher to so much success in the nineties, to contribute to the project.
Byrne told us the chassis is 20 per cent lighter, but 27 per cent stiffer than that of the Enzo. Unfortunately, there won't be a 20 per cent drop in total weight – the difference will be made up for by the addition of components for a hybrid powertrain. However, Amedeo Felisa, Ferrari CEO, promised us it would weigh "no more" than the Enzo – which came to 1,365kg.
The chassis uses a nomex honeycomb structure sandwiched between two layers of high-grade carbon-fibre for exceptional strength and crash protection. There's even a Kevlar protective plate (the same material used in bullet-proof vests) underneath the body, to protect the vital components and fragile carbon.
"It's taken a lot of work to achieve this. There are no shortcuts and no magic," Byrne explained.
The Enzo replacement will use a 7.3-litre V12 coupled to an electric motor, which will combine to produce more than 900bhp – eclipsing not only its chief rival, the 784bhp Porsche 918, but also the original 650bhp Ferrari Enzo. This means a 0-62mph time of less than three seconds and a top speed in excess of 220mph. It will also use a double-clutch gearbox and ceramic brakes.