If car enthusiasts thought that electrification will affect the sports car experience, well Ferrari is out to prove just the opposite. Ferrari is embracing the challenge of electrification, and they've just revealed a new generation hybrid... and it's a plug in.
Maranello has just taken the wraps off of the Ferrari 296 GTB, a new two-seat berlinetta that is set to drive the brand into the future. Ferrari says the 296 GTB doesn't succeed any other model; it's a new segment for Ferrari.
The new model features a stunning exterior design that has been optimized to slice through the air and maximize downforce, using the latest technologies and lightweight materials to enhance the driving experience, and comes with a twin turbo V6 hybrid engine. And unlike the last hybrid they launched, this one won't be an extremely limited edition.
The 296 GTB's name is actually a revival of a variant of the revered Dino line from 1958 which likewise had a V6 engine. While that original 296 was more of a race car, this new 296 GTB is a true road car; the GTB badge stands for gran turismo berlinetta.
The 296 GTB is a low slung mid-engined sports car designed in house at the Ferrari Style Centre. The 296 GTB features smooth curves and flowing edges. The unique thing about the 296 GTB is how Ferrari shaped the rear, as they abandoned the fastback-style rear end; instead they used “flying buttresses” and a visor like spoiler on the roof, separating the rear bonnet from the roof. Also unique to the 296 GTB are the new side mirrors that jut out from the door.
The underbody also has significant attention paid to it to enhance aerodynamics and cooling. Ferrari says the 296 GTB uses a new “tea-tray” design that allows improved cooling and downforce (through ground effect, presumably). The new 296 GTB also has an active spoiler that allows the car to function in high and low downforce configurations; with the rear spoiler deployed, the 296 GTB with the Assetto Fiorano package has a maximum downforce of 360 kg at 250 km/h.
What stands out with the 296 GTB is the new power unit. This one doesn't use a 90-degree twin turbo V8 like the 488. This one has a 120-degree 3.0-liter V6 twin turbo engine; this was done to allow the fitment of two turbochargers between cylinder heads. That was clearly a nod to Formula One engines that use a similar layout for the engine and turbos. The new power unit is also compact and has a lower center of gravity.
Ferrari also fitted the 296 GTB with a hybrid system, but instead of a standard hybrid, this one is a plug in hybrid, allowing owners to charge their Ferrari at home. With the low-mounted 7.45 kWh battery system fully charged, the 296 GTB can achieve a total electric range of 25 kilometers via the MGU-K; yes, the same name used in Formula One. The gearbox is an 8-speed dual clutch transmission.
The 296 GTB gets a total of 830 horsepower. The engine alone makes 663 horsepower. Torque is at 740 Nm; that number is actually lower compared to the 488. The result is a car that can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in just 2.9 seconds. Top speed is a claimed 330 kilometers per hour, but if you wish to drive on electric power alone then the 296 GTB can reach 135 km/h.
It is expected that the 296 GTB will have lower CO2 emissions and greatly enhanced fuel efficiency compared to models like the F8 Tributo, but Ferrari says the vehicle is still undergoing homologation so they have no numbers yet.
Ferrari says the 296 GTB will be available in showrooms in Europe by Q1 of 2022. If we were to estimate the Philippine launch, late 2022 would be the soonest or most likely 2023.