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The Ferrari SF90 Stradale is the first ever Ferrari to be a Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV). It is also the first Ferrari AWD two-seat sports. The name SF90 is from the 90th anniversary of the Scuderia Ferrari foundation. The advanced car technology that emanates from the knowledge and skill got from car competitions that are transplanted into road cars has put Maranello on the minds of the people of the world. What Ferrari has done is that they have integrated three electric motors to the V8 turbocharged internal combustion engine.

Two of those electric motors are sat the front as independent motors for each front wheel. The third motor is a Formula 1 derived Motor Generator Unit Kinetic (MGUK) on the rear sitting between the engine and the gearbox. This has brought about an increase in length. The three motors combined generate 217bhp. The result is an hyper car with 986hp 4.0L V8 hybrid setup and an all-new 8-speed dual-clutch transmission system. The transmission doesn’t come with reverse gear as reversing has been handed over to the electrically driven front wheels. This means 0-100kph in 2.5 seconds, same as the Bugatti Veyron and the Lamborghini Sisto Elemento. Its topspeed is at 211mph which will be at about 341kph.

There are new driving modes which Ferrari has not failed to name and it is called the eManettino. This offers four modes; eDrive, Hybrid, Performance and Qualifying modes which can be accessed by a toggle switch on the steering wheel.

The front of the car has been raised some 15mm in relation to the centre of the underside of the car. That is to enhance the effect of the vortex generators at the centre of the chassis which means that there will be better control over the air that gets to the underside of the car which simply means better handling and stability. The front bumper is made into two distinct parts; the upper section and the lower section just in the bid to achieve better aero and that definitely adds to the down force generated from the front of the sweet little mechanical wonder. Wheels are forged and they work as rotor blades, thanks to some specific aerodynamic geometry employed in their creation. This is not aesthetic even though it is because it manages the air flow from the wheel arch and evacuating air from there.

A design solution saw to it that the L-shaped light is killed and a slender slit which also serves as air cooling vent for the front brakes is incorporated. It also employs what is called a matrix LED headlight technology which delivers an active beam control that ensures visibility in all driving conditions. The tail lights have also deviated from the all-known Ferrari round tail lights to somewhat curve-edged rectangular designs.

The interior of this dream machine is quite slim and curvy. You get to see one sweet curved 16 inch TFT screen which aids visibility. The steering wheel still features the Ferrari style myriad buttons only that this time, they are touch sensitive flat buttons. Since the buttons are on the wheel, driver distraction has been extensively reduced.

The PHEV is so sweet that you don’t have to fire your engine when you move out in the morning. You simply slide out of the neighbourhood on E-power, no combustion smell in the air, no noise, simply the eManettino which allows you about 24km on the eDrive mode. The qualify mode sets everything at edge as they all work together to give you the entire power and performance possible so, performance is prioritized over battery recharge.

Ferrari being a sports car source has even gone a bit deeper by giving us a sport version of this same car. The lightened Assetto Fiorano will add its own visual identification, multimatic shock absorbers, carbon fibre door panels, titanium springs and exhaust tips to match which brings the Assetto Fiorano 30kg lighter than the standard SF90.

It is the second offering of the prancing horse badge carrier after the F8 Tributo which did not seem to appeal as much as would have been expected for this year. There would be three more offerings. There are plans on a LaFerrari replacement for the year 2022 as well.


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