The 812 Superfast succeeds the F12 Berlinetta, and incorporates many technical improvements: from a more powerful and efficient 12-cylinder engine, which delivers 800 CV and a torque of 718 Nm at 7,000 rpm, to the introduction of the sport EPS (Electric Power Steering) and Virtual Short Wheelbase 2.0 system (PCV), to a extreme aerodynamic body.
The surface treatment is highly sculptural, with a bold interplay of convex and concave shapes, and many air intakes, out-takes, diffusers and spoilers.
Below we report details on the design and aerodynamics from the official press release.
Designed by Ferrari’s in-house Design Team, the 812 Superfast redefines the formal language of front-engined V12 Ferraris’ proportions while maintaining the exterior dimensions and interior space and comfort.
The silhouette has a fastback-like style, with a two-box design with a high tail reminiscent of the 365 GTB4 (Daytona) of 1969, visually lowering an aggressive rear spoiler designed to guarantee downforce.
The sculptural, three-dimensional flanks feature a distinctive vent behind the front wheels designed to suck high-pressure air from the wheelarches and then channel it along the doors. The draped design of the flanks visually shortens the tail and is characterized by the sharply slanted crease lines and the muscular wheelarches.
At the front, the full-LED headlights are integrated into the design of the sculpted air intakes on the hood.
At the rear, four round tail-lights inspired by Ferrari tradition emphasize a design centered around horizontal lines and give the 812 Superfast a broad, imposing stance, visually lowering both spoiler and the very compact cabin without, however, sacrificing its space or that of the boot.
The cabin has been radically redesigned to imbue it with an even sportier character. Light, compact volumes hug the contours of the interior structures to the extent that the latter are visible in certain areas.
These ultra-taut surfaces are deliberately layered and broken up to create voids with the result that the main elements seem to float. The overall effect is both thoroughbred racing eagerness and lean elegance that never feels overstated.
The horizontal dash loops stylishly around the central air vents for a sophisticated, sculptural, yet supremely stylish look that is also a nod to the LaFerrari’s cockpit.
An additional air vent also allowed the designers to lighten the look of the dash still further by creating a “cleft” in the central section that further emphasizes the fact that metallic elements stretch out into the upholstered volumes.
The driver zone and central recesses featuring contrasting trim to further underscore their dynamic forms.
The steering wheel and its commands, the satellite pods on either side of it and the interplay of volumes and contrasting materials, combine to create an extreme cockpit in which all of the various elements are angled towards the all-important driver, around whom the volumes curve to highlight his role.
Horizontal character lines create very distinct driver-oriented volumes that also pull off the delicate feat of not excluding the passenger from the action.
The beautifully crafted trimming both at the centre of the dash and around the glove compartment create the just right sense of Ferrari’s signature combination of the artisanal and the high tech.
The seats follow a diapason design language and exploit that expansiveness to create an interplay of solids and voids that lend character to the seat and backrest.
The seats differ from and contrast with the rest of the interior surfaces, thanks to their perforated leather trim which adds a sporty touch to the new styling.
The aerodynamic coefficient values delivered by the 812 Superfast are a significant improvement on those of the F12berlinetta. Mobile aero solutions, whether mechanically activated (active mobile aerodynamics) or activated by the pressure of the air itself (passive mobile aerodynamics), guarantee very low drag values.
The choices made in this area were heavily influenced by those debuted on the special F12berlinetta-derived F12tdf, with which the 812 Superfast shares the same downforce values. All its aerodynamic coefficients, however, have been improved.
To the side of the air intakes for engine and brake cooling, is a turning vane on the front bumper which is designed to channel air flows striking the front of car to ensure they hug its flanks, thereby reducing the width of the car’s wake. This in turn appreciably reduces overall drag.
Front downforce generation is entrusted for the most part to a pair of diffusers just ahead of the front wheels, which increase the amount of air drawn in by the underbody. To cancel out the drag associated with them, the diffusers have been equipped with a mobile aero system. When this activates, it completely stalls the diffusers, fairing in the wheel. The mobile surface integrated into the diffuser ramp is activated by the pressure of the air which, as it enters from the lower intake on the outside of the bumper, is channelled towards the mobile surface. When the car reaches a speed where the pressure in the duct is stronger than the calibrated pre-load of an elastic spring, the mobile surface opens, thereby reducing the car’s drag and improving front downforce.
The front diffusers’ capacity to generate downforce is boosted by generous air evacuation from the front wheelarch along the side of the car. This vent on the flanks also directs the energised air flow from the diffusers on the front underbody, preventing pressure build-ups inside the wheelarch and thus improving downforce and cutting drag. This effect is maximised by two sculpted air intakes on the front bonnet by the side of the headlights. The flow is channelled by a specific duct to the front section of the inside of the wheelarch, where it reduces pressure, before energising the flow exiting along the flanks.
The spoiler on the car’s tail also generates downforce. The trailing edge of the spoiler is 30 mm higher than on the F12berlinetta as per the F12tdf. However, unlike the latter, it has not been extended rearwards in depth to avoid changing the car’s dimensions. This has increased drag but is compensated for by the unusual gap at the bottom of the rear screen ahead of the spoiler. This discontinuity causes a separation in the air flow from the rear window, creating longitudinal vortices which boost compression on the surface of the bottom of the windscreen, thereby reducing drag associated with the downforce generated by the spoiler. The shape of the rear wheelarch has also been crafted to guarantee efficient downforce generation. In fact, the lift naturally generated by the way the body curves over the wheelarches has been minimised by introducing an aerodynamic by-pass between the bodywork and the inner rear wheelarch. Rather than following the curvature of the flank in that area, which would create lift, the air flowing over the car’s belt line enters the intake behind the rear quarterlight. It is then channelled into a duct that allows it to exit in front of the rear spoiler. The lift effect of the wheelarches is thus minimised, generating downforce without adding any extra drag.
Three pairs of curved dams that act as vortex generators were adopted for the front underbody and are responsible for 30% of the increase in downforce compared to the F12berlinetta. The dams create a ground effect by generating powerful vortices and reducing the wake from the wheels to the absolute minimum, further boosting the flat underbody’s downforce generation capabilities.
Unlike their F12tdf counterparts, the dams have new blowing slots which, by reducing overall pressure on the front side of the dams, boosts their efficiency, with the result that, despite the downforce generated remaining the same, drag introduced in the area is cut by 15%.
Because of the powerful suction created by the rear spoiler, the rear diffuser has been completely redesigned to enhance its extraction power. Firstly, the diffuser’s trailing edge now features a wing in a deep recess created in the bumper. Air flows from both the lower and upper surfaces strike the splitter which extends across the entire width of the diffuser, boosting the downforce generated by the latter by 12%. Since the rear diffuser is one of the main contributors to downforce generation and the resulting drag, it has also been given a system of three active flaps which rotate to a 14° angle in the minimal drag configuration to completely stall the diffuser, thereby significantly reducing overall drag.