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Ferrari 12Cilindri—An In-depth Look

In keeping with the likes of the Ferrari LaFerrari’s rather unambiguous name, the new Ferrari 12Cilindri shares with it, a very similar and self-explanatory nomenclature. Honorifically referred to as the Dodici Cilindri—anglicized as Twelve Cylinder—it’s Ferrari’s latest testament to the automaker’s quintessential 6.5L V12 power plant, as its name so readily suggests.

For marketing purposes—and because it fits much better on a badge—that name has been abridged to its more universally palatable form of ‘12Cilindri’. That same simplicity is also reflected in the Ferrari 12Cilindri’s general automobiling philosophy, with the exotic minimalism of its naturally-aspirated 820 bhp engine at the center of its identity. 

A Literal 12 Cylinder, Yet So Much More

It was never Ferrari’s intention to reinvent the wheel, so to speak, and avid Ferrari enthusiasts will be quick to point out glaring similarities to its predecessor—the Ferrari 812 Superfast—and its own version of the venerable F140 V12 motor. Both share an identical 6,496 cc of displacement and output roughly equivalent power figures, with the 12Cilindri generating more horsepower, but less torque. 

The most notable evolution between the two platforms would be more in terms of character rather than peak numbers, with the 12Cilindri’s V12 extending its redline to an astronomical 9,500 rpm–a solid 1,000 rpm more than the outgoing super grand tourer it succeeds. Similarly, the new car generates those peak numbers further up the rev range, which will surely end up providing a transformative driving experience despite the other likenesses between the two cars.

Performance & Drivetrain

More on that big V12 engine-and what a fine specimen it is. There’s a bit of drama that comes as part of the package too, with the 6.5L mounted further behind the front axle than in the 812 Superfast. This allows the power plant in the 12Cilindri to be showcased with even more of a wow-factor, where it lies under a stunning ‘cofango’ front bonnet. 

Ferrari was absolutely on point when it came to sticking to their guns on the original philosophy of the F140 engine. The spirit of its naturally-aspirated motor remains fully intact, with the Italian automaker forgoing any level of hybridization—or even the addition of turbochargers—which is the current default for complying with the latest set of emissions regulations, and what have you. 

The higher 9,500 rpm redline is sure to aurally delight, and it’s thanks to lighter titanium connecting rods and forged pistons that drivers will be able to partake in this particular Italian symphony. All changes considered, this ultimately makes the 12Cilindri a bit less torque-y than its predecessor, with 500 lb-ft of peak torque produced @ 7,250 rpm (instead of 530 lb-ft in the 812 Superfast). 

However,  that’s all kinds of semantics. Ferrari claims that most of the torque is available from 2,500 rpm onwards, meaning that you don’t need to be perpetually high-strung in order to have practical access to the car’s performance. There’s obviously plenty of that on tap too, and in conjunction with 820 bhp of peak horsepower—produced at 9,250 rpm—0-60 mph sprints can be completed in as little as 2.8 seconds. Top speed is rated at 217 mph. Not too shabby for an NA engine, but then again… it’s a Ferrari, pal. 

In keeping with the overall purity of the engine itself, an updated 8-speed dual-clutch transmission continues to send power to the rear wheels exclusively, in this latest interpretation of the Prancing Horse’s super-grand-touring masterpiece. Ferrari claims that it shifts 30% quicker than the outgoing car.

Handling & Chassis

Ferrari claims that the chassis is now 15% more rigid compared to the 812 Superfast. Remembering that the 12Cilindri is not a track-focused tool, this improvement provides more precise handling performance to complement the refined characteristics that the latest super tourer will arguably become best known for. 

The entire chassis is still made of aluminum, so the 12Cilindri remains relatively lightweight given its dimensions and overall footprint. Granted, it does tip the scales higher than the 812 Superfast, weighing in at around 1,560 kg. That’s a gain of about 35 kg, and most of that can be attributed to the new car’s larger 21-inch wheels, larger front bonnet and active aerodynamics equipment. On that note, I dare anyone to name any notable sports car model that’s lighter and an improvement over its direct predecessor. 

The majority of the 812 Superfast’s suspension and chassis technology has been carried over to the 12Cilindri, though features such as rear-wheel steering and brake-by-wire have had their coding re-optimized for use on the new platform. When the active aerodynamic parts are at play, up to an additional 50 kg of downforce is generated at the rear. That’s hardly elaborate by today’s standards, but an acceptable level of utilitarianism is always demanded from a Ferrari super tourer, so there was never going to be a giant wing in the picture.

Overall, the driving experience is more than likely going to be exactly what you’d expect from a car like this—and as an unapologetically-Ferrari super tourer, that can never be a bad thing. Comfortable and civilized around town, and a performance maestro when the occasion beckons the very best from this uncompromising Italian V12.  

Design & Interior

Ferrari’s modern bloodline of super tourers have always been exceptionally bold—but never vulgar—with their design language, and it’s clear that the new 12Cilindri doesn’t fall far from that same family tree. 

Arguably, you could say that it’s the most radical design so far, and that Ferrari has taken more liberties than normal when it came to expressing themselves through this car. However, this is more so on the account of being conspicuously retro-ist, with key design cues harkening back to famous Ferrari’s of days gone by. Eagle-eyed enthusiasts will immediately spot a reimagined headlight and front bonnet design being clearly derived from the ‘60s-era Ferrari 365 Daytona.

In concert with other modern Ferrari models, the 12Cilindri is all about minimalist future-ism when it comes to the cabin. That means an abundance of digital touch screens and an absence of traditionally tactile button-ry. The idea is to invoke a certain standard of cleanliness and austerity, even at the expense of sensibility in some cases-ergo, the constant need to wipe away pesky fingerprints.

Nevertheless, I think it all works with both what the new super tourer is all about and is consistent with contemporary Ferrari branding and philosophies. Afterall, there are still plenty of nods to the company’s heritage through the use of familiar finishings and decorative design options for the interior. Inside and out, the new Ferrari 12Cilindri definitely looks the part.  

Pricing & Availability

There’s yet to be an official announcement regarding pricing for US customers, but based on current exchange rates, it’s expected that starting prices will begin at around $440,000 USD for the coupé and $470,000 USD the Spider which will be available for purchase and delivery late this year.

Yes, you heard that right. The convertible version of the 12Cilindri will be available right from the start, as opposed to the more traditional route of Ferrari releasing it a few months after the fixed-roof version’s debut. The former is equipped with a motorized hard-top mechanism which takes roughly 14 seconds to retract/extend.


You can never get tired of staring at a beautiful Ferrari super tourer, and just when you think you might, they’ve already gone and made a newer, bolder, and better one. It’s easy to forget how incredible the performance is on the new Ferrari 12Cilindri, and with it not being recognized as a track-oriented supercar at any level, it can easily fly under the radar.

But that’s kind of the point, I suppose. Despite having 820 bhp on demand through its mighty F140 V12 engine, the 12Cilindri is more about exuding class than expressing verve. That’s not to say that it wouldn’t humble most cars on an enthusiastic drive through the backroads though, should its driver inadvertently find himself running late to his next tee time…   

Stay tuned for our follow-up review, when the car is in the hands of automotive journalists.

What Other Experts Are Saying

Top Gear

No turbos. No hybrid. A big V12 meets active aero in Ferrari’s latest super-GT.

Link to full article, here.


Enzo Ferrari once said, “A GT is for someone who wants to stand out.” He would approve of the Ferrari 12Cilindri. 

Link to full article, here.


Ferrari’s new flagship GT car, the 12Cilindri, is the most powerful pure-combustion car it has yet put into series production. 

Link to full article, here.


Ferrari’s stunning naturally-aspirated V12 lives on in the 12Cilindri – a Daytona-inspired replacement for the 812 Superfast.

Link to full article, here.

Car and Driver

It’s visually enticing, it pays homage to the iconic 365GTB/4, and it could be the last of its kind.

Link to full article, here.

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