Meet The Ferrari SF90 Stradale, Ferrari's First Plug-In Hybrid
Like with most things in life, change is inevitable. Against a backdrop of political change, climate uncertainty and increasing environmental legislation, even thoroughbred supercars cannot escape the far-reaching hand of change.
For the purists Ferrari has long been about all-out pure internal combustion engine prowess, however, the as the marques latest creation was revealed to the world this week, it appears that everything is about to change…
Meet the Ferrari SF90 Stradale. The Italian marques first series production plug-in hybrid, it the product of a monumental sea shift in an industry which is seeing an unrelenting push to electric and hybrid vehicles.
The SF90 is a watershed moment for the company and never has the car maker from Maranello created a high volume hybrid, with good reason. Early hybrid and electric vehicles from other manufacturers were crude, overweight and severely limited by design but in 2019, who said hybrids had to be boring?
Over the past few years, billions have been invested by the worlds car makers into hybridisation and battery technology and Ferrari is better placed than any to develop this technology thanks to their Formula One programme.
Back in 2014 F1 made a controversial move to V6 Hybrid powertrains that included innovative battery harvesting and recovery systems. Now into their 6th season of use, Hybridisation in Formula One is now a firm fixture and it’s this technology that Ferrari has used in the all-new SF90.
Whilst the back story of this machine is a story of consequences and external factors, what of the machine itself?
Let’s first address the way that this thing looks. Taking inspiration from the new F8 Tributo is where the similarities stop between the SF90 and its recently launched counterpart. The SF90 represents a bold new design vision for Ferrari and design has clearly been a major part of this project.
The SF90 looks light, agile and a supercar with genuine poise. A machine that looks significantly ahead of its time, the SF90 is a genuine statement of intent as other major supercar makers position themselves for a hybrid and electric future.
On the inside is an all-new interior, an interior which benefits from an all-new 16 inch HD curved screen to replace the outing going instrument cluster. The rest of the interior has also been on the receiving end of the cosmetic tweaks and features a new dashboard layout and refined interior materials. The interior here is a major step up to the aforementioned F8 Tributo, which appears to lack in this area, retaining many design elements from the 458 and 488 before it.
Underneath this edgy and dynamic body styling is the true hero, however. A V8 engine that has already had its capacity upped from 3902cc to 3990cc is twinned with not one but three electric motors.
With the internal combustion engine capable of producing 769bhp alone, the additional electric motors bring a further 216 horses to the party meaning brake horsepower tops out at a mighty and purely bonkers 986bhp. This translates to performance figures of zero to 62mph in just 2.5 seconds and a top speed of 212 mph.
Ferrari state the new SF90 can be run in just internal combustion engine or electric power modes, however, the latter setting restricts this to just 15 miles of EV time. Naturally, the SF90 is designed to be run in full-hybrid mode and the electric motors are here to boost performance rather than enable fully electric driving. However, that said this machine can still reach 84 mph even on its limited electric-only potential.
A hybrid Ferrari has long been rumoured and whatever your point of view on hybridisation, you have to congratulate Ferrari on what they have achieved here. Whilst the purists may present their dismay, there are many reasons to be cheerful about our bold new future and the Ferrari SF90 Stradaleis the most tantalising look yet at the supercar blueprint of the future.