Ferrari Patents Tesla-Style Modular Battery Architecture

There’s more hybrid drivetrain tech coming from Maranello. Will this end Ferrari’s front-engine V12?

byBen Keeshin|
Ferrari Patents Tesla-Style Modular Battery Architecture

Ferrari’s technological riches are about to trickle down. Italy’s most beloved supercar company has filed a patent for a new hybrid drivetrain to be used in an upcoming front-engined sports car, like the replacement for the F12 Berlinetta and, eventually, the GTC4 Lusso (née, FF). No longer will the LaFerrari harbor Ferrari’s only hybrid drivetrain—electro-boost is coming to the brand’s “accessible” options. While the forward-looking drivetrain will definitely trim down those emissions and lap times, the announcement brings with it rumors of something ominous: The end of the 12-cylinder, front-engine Ferrari. That lineage includes the 125 S, the first genuine Ferrari, as well as the 599 GTO, Daytona, and, of course, the 250 Testa Rossa. Within the decade, the glorious 6-liter V12 that howls from the bows of the F12 and GTC4Lusso will likely be sacrificed on the altar of Green Driving.

In fact, it’s not only Ferrari’s grand tourers that could get their “old school” motors yanked. Though the patent describes a front-engine, rear-wheel drive layout with two battery pack beneath the floorpan, Tesla-style, the design is modular, meaning that it could be adapted to fit a mid-engine design, like the entry-level Dino that Ferrari has in the works.

Regardless of layout, Ferrari’s hybrid system will combine hefty battery packs, a version of the brand’s dual-clutch transmission with an electric motor attached, and a downsized, forced-induction engine. Together, those components allow the system to travel around 30 miles on electricity alone—great for urban centers like London’s with carbon taxes—while providing power fill for the ICE during more dynamic spurts in open country.

If you crave a V12, have the means and haven’t picked up an F12 yet, do so. If you lust for ‘lectricity but didn’t nab one of the LaFerraris, worry not. This new system will be even wilder than that supercar’s mild versions. We’ll mourn what’s loud and glorious about the old, but you know this new charged system is going to be a riot.