Does Ferrari think a front-engine V12 was a mistake?
With the Ferrari SF90 Stradale now taking over the flagship line, how long will the 812 Superfast, GTS (and perhaps their track-oriented versions) stay in the lineup?
Ferrari SF90 Stradale
The Ferrari SF90 Stradale is the first series-production million-dollar car and the first series-production four-digit-horsepower car, as well as the brand's first production plug-in hybrid. For more than two decades, the front-engine Ferrari V12 series has been the King of the Ferrari lineup (that's if we exclude all the limited-production hypercar models). The front-engine 550 Maranello replaced the mid-engine Testarossa; the 550's children include (but are not only) the 575M Maranello, 599 GTB Fiorano and GTO, F12 Berlinetta and TDF, and the 812 Superfast and GTS.
Positioned as an indirect competitor to the Lamborghini V12 models (Diablo, Murcielago, Aventador), the front-engine V12 lineup has historically rung in as the flagship model of the Stallion brand, and is now long-in-the-tooth compared to likes of McLaren and Porsche. With the SF90 Stradale now in place and already faster, more powerful and more technologically-advanced, will the 812 finally get its heaven compromise?
Even the not-so-flagship 488 Pista and F8 Tributo supercars are as fast, if not faster than the 812 Superfast - yet they are less expensive and also much more track-focused.
The SF90 Stradale is a hypercar. And yes, it truly is. But it is also the first non-limited-production hypercar, unlike the Ford GT, McLaren Senna and Speedtail, Pagani Huayra, and many others. At a $1.2-million starting price in the US with a twin-turbocharged V8, it is likely that Ferrari will also find a model to directly replace the 812 Superfast with somewhere around 850-950 hp. The car will likely carry the Maranello or Testarossa name, with the same engine as the SF90 Stradale but detuned - and slotted between the F8 Tributo and SF90.
Based on the above statement, Ferrari could do the opposite of what they did in the 1990s and revert to a mid-engine layout. The last series-production mid-engine flagship from the automaker was the F512M, which was an evolution of the Testarossa.
Will there be a track version of the 812 Superfast? Yes, maybe as a final edition. The Ferrari SF90 Stradale with the Assetto Corsa package is extremely fast and could perhaps keep pace with the McLaren Speedtail and Koenigsegg Jesko on a circuit.
Truth be told, V12s ... especially 6.0-liter-and-higher V12s are going extinct. The Lamborghini Veneno, Centenario and Sian are limited-production variants of the Aventador, and it is likely Lamborghini will also go towards the twin-turbo V8 route like McLaren and Ferrari. The Mercedes-AMG V12s are also no more due to fuel economy standards. Aston Martin did use to have a 5.9 V12, but now their V12 is a 5.2-liter with twin turbochargers. Pagani is exempt because it is a special-series automaker, but even Koenigsegg has strictly been V8.