Why Your Car Sucks/Rocks: Ferrari
Ask your average Joe on the street what the best car company in the world is, and there is a good chance that they will respond with, “Ferrari.” For many, it won’t even take a nanosecond to respond as such, but what makes Ferrari so great? There are automakers that have sold more cars, faster cars, and more powerful cars. Is Ferrari the undeniable king of the road, or are people making the brand out to be much more than the sum of its moving parts? Why Your Car Rocks: There is no single brand that conjures up the passion of motoring quite like Ferrari. Men work their whole lives just to have the means to acquire a Ferrari…of any kind. Experts regard the 308 as a pedestrian supercar, but a man can die happy knowing that they have owned a car that was crafted by the genius of Enzo Ferrari. Consider the man, Enzo, for a moment. He broke off from Alfa Romeo after he began a successful racing career. He pissed off Ford, which bore the Ford GT40. He pissed off Lamborghini, which spawned that supercar brand. The late Enzo Ferrari is a singular watershed individual, whose actions resulted in effects that span the decades.
Looking to the past, the Ferrari 250 GTO is widely considered to be the most collectable and expensive car of all time. Driving enthusiasts call the 250 SWB (Short Wheel Base) one of the best driving of all time. Automotive historians argue that the 250 GT Lusso is one of the most beautiful automotive shapes to ever grace human eyes. Those are incredible superlatives, and they are all based on the same Ferrari 250. Incredible what an automaker can do with a singular platform.
Today, Ferrari continues to produce some of the most impressive road cars in the world. From the “Entry-level” 458 Italia and California, to the insane-hybrid-hypercar, the LaFerrari, the Italian carmaker is to sportscars what Kleenex is to tissues. Simply put, Ferrari is the definitive performance carmaker.
Why Your Car Sucks:
Why then, if a carmaker is renowned as the best in the world, is it so damn paranoid? The brand is constantly playing control games with the press, even Chris Harris from DRIVE is banned from test driving them for life, for writing a scathing expose on how Ferrari tries to control the press. In it, he describes how two separate cars were tuned differently for journalists. One was tuned for the track, and the other was tuned for the road. Basically they were rigging a test.
For his observations, Harris was blacklisted by the Italian carmaker, so he took to driving cars owned by individuals and dealers. Once again, the practice of reviewing a non-press-prepared Ferrari will get you banned from testing their vehicles. The level of paranoia is Watergate-ian. Or Nixonian, or what-have-you. They already make one of the best cars in the world, so why rig the test? It is pure paranoia.
Also, here is a poorly kept secret about Ferraris: the break down. All. The. Time. While enthusiasts used to joke FIAT once stood for “Fix It Again Tony,” the same could also apply to Ferraris. The cars are temperamental, and through the 70s and 80s were regarded as junk by those who worked on them. It really was not until Acura debuted the original NSX, that supercar-makers finally improved their reliability– Ferrari included. Ferrari’s of the near and far past are highly regarded, but there was a time when the cars were chided as substandard supercars. Consider that, then next time you see a 308.