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2015 Ferrari F12berlinetta

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 3/20/2015 Stefan Ogbac

Vehicle Summary

The Ferrari F12berlinetta is a high-performance, rear-drive grand tourer powered by a high-revving 6.3-liter V-12 with 731 hp and 508 lb-ft of torque and paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Since the car is tuned for performance, it doesn’t have good gas mileage at 12/16 mpg city/highway with the optional engine stop-start system and 11/16 mpg without it.

Overview

Despite having a curb weight of two tons, the Ferrari F12 accelerates well thanks to its powerful high-revving V-12 engine; however, it has a hard time getting traction when launching from a stop, making it slower than sports cars with less power. Handling is good but doesn’t inspire confidence because of the computers trying to keep the car stable. Since the F12 isn’t an all-out sports car, its driving dynamics are not as sophisticated as its stable mates the 458 Italia, Spider and Speciale; however, its steering, while light, provides good feedback and precision.

Buyers can also customize the car according to their liking, since Ferrari offers an array of personalization options. Exterior options include over 20 different colors, five wheel designs, seven brake caliper colors, carbon fiber accents and spoilers, and a rearview camera. Interior customization is even more extensive, and includes two-tone upholsteries in leather and/or Alcantara, contrast stitching and piping, and six types of sports seats including carbon fiber racing buckets.

What We Think

When treated as a grand tourer and not a thoroughbred sports car, the Ferrari F12berlinetta is a good choice with its powerful V-12 engine, highly customizable cabin, and surprisingly compliant ride. In a 2014 First Test review, we said that its best to “not drive the car flat-out” because the F12 isn’t “a race car for the road” like the 458 range. Its powerful engine and quick-shifting dual-clutch transmission make it feel like its power is “never-ending” with plenty of power everywhere. Additionally, in a 2013 First Drive review, we said that the car’s steering, while light, “offers an immense amount of feedback, clearly relaying not just the onset of understeer or oversteer, but precisely how to correct it.” The F12’s two-ton curb weight, however, hurts its performance because it doesn’t accelerate as fast as it should even with 731 hp and 508 lb-ft of torque.

In a comparison test against the Porsche 911 Carrera 4S and Chevrolet Corvette C7 Stingray, the F12 lost due to its weight hampering its driving dynamics and less aggressive tires, which meant the car “didn’t feel planted,” felt heavier, and didn’t inspire confidence in the driver.

You’ll Like

  • Powerful V-12 engine
  • Extensive personalization options
  • Light but communicative steering

You Won’t Like

  • Heavy curb weight
  • Too unruly at its limit
  • Performance lags behind less expensive performance cars

Key Competitors

  • Bentley Continental GT Speed
  • Lamborghini Aventador
  • Aston Martin Vanquish
  • Chevrolet Corvette Z06
  • Nissan GT-R Nismo

Rating

3 star

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