Enzo is often quoted as saying that with Ferrari you buy the engine and the car comes free. With that in mind what would he say about the prospect of an all-electric Ferrari? For decades debates have continued over the merits of a V8 engine compared to a V12, with many fans insisting that a real Ferrari must have 12 cylinders. But times are changing and so is legislation around the world. Norway recently announced that after 2025 pure petrol or diesel cars will be banned. Cars will either need to be pure EVs or some form of hybrid.
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According to Adam Jonas, an analyst at Morgan Stanley, a variety of factors could essentially force Ferrari to go all electric at some point in the future. Onerous regulations or outright bans on internal combustion engines and the performance advantages of electric powertrains may pose an existential threat to companies like Ferrari. Jonas said Ferrari’s recent push to increase volume and possible plan for an SUV may be steps toward covering the cost of investing in an electric powertrain.
First, the regulatory challenge: A few countries, such as the United Kingdom and China, have begun to take steps to eventually ban the sale of new gas-powered vehicles. California is mulling taking a similar path.
“There is a growing list of cities around the world, particularly in Europe, that are seriously considering outlawing the operation of gasoline and diesel-powered cars by as soon as 2035 or 2040,” Jonas said. “If you’re on the board of Ferrari, do you ignore this fact? Can Ferrari even control this?”
Jonas is doubtful that cars such as Ferraris would be able to obtain exceptions to these bans.
Secondly, electric cars such as the Tesla Model S P100DL offer lightning-quick acceleration that is tough for internal combustion cars to meet or beat. This is not the only aspect of performance important to drivers, of course. Motor Trend said that while the Tesla set a new record — going 0-60 miles per hour in 2.7 seconds, the internal combustion hypercars pull ahead at higher speeds.
Jonas said most people he has spoken with think Ferrari will embrace hybrids, but not electrics. He challenged this view and said some of Ferrari’s recent moves may be laying the ground for the expensive investment in a new powertrain.
Personally, we don’t think that Ferrari will produce an all-electric model, and any electric addition will assist the power delivery, as with the LaFerrari. A Ferrari without the engine sound takes the soul out of the car.