The Ferrari F12 Berlinetta and its fabulous V12 engine is very desirable, with its 740hp, the magnificent sound of the V12 and its agility of berlinette. It has been awarded by numerous magazines, among others with the prize for the best engine of the year in 2013.
But what is the reality over the long run when you own it? Is there fun at each outing? Aren't the costs excessive to drive regularly? And how do you find a good copy? To find out, here is the return of @Trois cinquante cinq, a big fan of Ferrari and who is not in his first Ferrari.
What is your history with cars and why did you choose the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta?
My first car was a white Peugeot 205 GTI, followed by an almost brand new VW Corrado VR6, 2 years after its release, and which I had bought from a notary at the end of my studies. I have great memories of it. Its 6 cylinders in line was fabulous for the time!
My third sports car was the culmination of a dream with the 13,000-kilometer Ferrari F355 Berlinetta, with which I traveled 49,000 kilometers behind the wheel. It was almost yesterday, yet 14 years have already passed.
For the past year and a half, I've been driving my Ferrari F12 Berlientta, a real achievement for the enthusiast attached to the history of the brand that I am.
As you know, after looking in vain for a Ferrari Challenge Stradale for almost 2 years, I ordered a Ferrari 488 GTB at the Geneva Motor Show in 2016. The latter was luckily never delivered on time, despite my patience. The loan of a Ferrari F12 on a spring afternoon on the back country roads sealed my decision, no hesitation, it represents everything I liked and everything I like about Ferrari !!!
What were your criteria for buying a Ferrari F12 Berlinetta and how did you find this one?
I wanted a Ferrari F12 Berlinetta as close to new as possible, and with as many options as possible. No Rosso Corsa, no black. But I was open to yellow and other shades of gray, and more particularly the Grigio Ferro.
She arrived in Rosso Berlinetta and it's perfect. I couldn't have asked for more except the Rosso Fuoco which is a slightly more orange shade in the color codes. I acquired it by word of mouth as soon as it entered the Ferrari dealership after a new purchase from its previous owner.
Immediately after the purchase, what impressed you most at the wheel of your Ferrari F12?
Honestly, this is the best engine / gearbox assembly I have ever seen! The V12 is from the Enzo XX program !!!
It is a real block from the race, placed in the central front position, no inertia, an incredible extension and climbs in regimes where the longitudinal G takes your breath away. The sound emits different vocalizations every 1000 additional turns. It's ecstatic sound !!!
It is also the engine that will be used in the LaFerrari and to which we simply added the KERS. The extension is amazing, giving the feeling that the acceleration is endless. The plateau from 5500 to 8500 turns is really physical!
The gear changes on the climb and on the descent smack like shots. It's so addictive !!!
To ride, the instructions are simple, you have to apply a light pressure on the brakes and the nose goes straight to the rope. Weight is not felt in most circumstances, even if it is there and you should keep this parameter in mind. I find the car agile, and the ultra direct steering contributes to this vocation affirmed by its name of berlinette V12. At this level, it is very different from a Ferrari 599 whose size somewhat limits the use.
Each time I turn the key, and the V12 suddenly wakes up, it's an incredible sensation, namely the promise of having all 5 senses fulfilled by the ballad that will follow. Always with humility, because the violence of the accelerations and the thrusts of the engine torque do not forgive anyone who is behind the wheel. Important thing to know with the Ferrari F12, it is the imperative to heat the gums well to pass the power on the second gear. 740 hp on the rear wheels require this manual!
The F12 offers so much, whether in terms of physical, sound or visual sensations! Its design is very pure, with subtlety and strength ... The car has an incredible presence !!!
Can you tell us about the costs involved in normal use of a Ferrari F12 (insurance, annual maintenance, major overhaul, contingencies, etc.)?
I benefit from free maintenance for 7 years following delivery of the car to its owner. I have covered 10,000 kilometers since its purchase and are gradually completing the break-in!
Nothing to report on this side. Distribution by chain, double clutch gearbox made to last the life of the car, wear-resistant carbon-ceramic discs on open roads ... All you have to do is drive !!!
Reliability feedback on the F12 is excellent. It is a well born car!
Regarding insurance, I pay € 150 / month including all risks.
And if it had to be done again, what would you change?
I would buy the same Ferrari F12, it corresponds to my dream, to the conception I have of the brand's history and to the relationship I have with it.
Besides, it should have been called the LaFerrari, as it brings together the fundamentals and perfectly symbolizes the history of Ferrari.
When you have tasted the V12 of the Ferrari F12, it's hard to imagine driving with anything else, except a Ferrari F12 TDF (which will remain a dream due to its current and future pricing).
The future of the brand's road cars does not inspire me, I like mechanics, not electricity, and the kilometers of electric cables associated with the exclusively turbocharged engines of future models leave me cold. Also if a day arrives when we have to turn the page, I would probably leave the brand that has lived with me since I was 16 years old.
My only regret is to have missed the Ferrari Challenge Stradale by not being able to find a copy that meets my expectations, as you know, but the F12 remains the guardian of the temple.
How do you use Ferrarista for your experience with your Ferrari?
I try to share my experiences and learn from that of others. I learn again and again about the history of the brand, the subtleties of the different models, mechanically or historically. It is a group of enthusiasts who eat and sleep Ferrari, and I recognize myself well in this approach which naturally leads to sharing and meetings. Very beautiful meetings and many people have become friends! Besides Franck, I think it's been almost 15 years that we have been friends !!!
Eternal recognition to @eric355 who throughout my Ferrari experience (especially with my ex-Ferrari F355) often reassured me technically and allowed me to sleep on my two ears!
THANK YOU @Trois cinquante cinq for this very detailed and passionate feedback on the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta! Do you have any other information you would like to know about using the Ferrari F12 Berlinetta? Or if you own a Ferrari F12 Berlinetta, what information would you like to share?
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